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Former Tottenham defender Goran Bunjevcevic dies aged 45

Goran Bunjevcevic shrugs off a challenge from Laurent Robert

Ex-Tottenham defender Goran Bunjevcevic has died at the age of 45, his former club Red Star Belgrade have announced.

Bunjevcevic, who had been working as a sporting director for the Serbian Football Association (FSS), underwent emergency surgery last month after suffering a stroke.

"Goran fought bravely for over a month after suffering an aneurysm on 20 May this year, but has today tragically lost the battle," Red Star said in a statement on their website:

He played 169 matches for Red Star between 1997 and 2001, winning four trophies including two league titles. Bunjevcevic joined Tottenham in 2001 and spent five seasons at the club before ending his playing career at Dutch side ADO Den Haag a year later.

He also made 16 appearances for the Yugoslavia national team.

After scoring Serbia's winner in their World Cup opener against Costa Rica, Roma and former Manchester City full-back Aleksander Kolarov dedicated the triumph to Bunjecevic.

Kolarov said: "We dedicate this win to our Director [Goran Bunjevcevic], and we want him to know that we are all supporting him.

"He's had some health problems. We want to relay this message to him and his family that we are 100 per cent behind him."

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