Monday, 29 July 2013


Ecuador international Christian Benitez has been confirmed dead today, Monday 29th at age 27, by his club, El Jaish.

The former Birmingham, Santos Laguna and Club America striker, nicknamed Chucho, who just completed a £10M move to the Qatari outfit from Club America passed away before making his debut.

El Jaish released a statement confirming the news today saying: 'The club would like to offer its sincere condolences to the family of the player.

Benitez who recently joined the club from Club America for three seasons, participated for the first time with the team during yesterday's match against Qatar Sports Club in the Sheikh Jassem Cup and did not complain of any health problems.

'His sudden departure is a big shock for each member of the technical and administrative staff. He was a player that over the short period he was here was regarded for his high moral character.' Ecuadorian team-mate Antonio Valencia of Manchester United expressed his condolences having been informed of Benitez's death.

"You'll always be my brother. This pain is hard, my brother, but we love you," the winger, who also played alongside the 27-year-old at El Nacional, posted on Twitter.

Cleber Chala, another former team-mate of Benitez's at El Nacional, tweeted: "You will live in our hearts forever, Chucho."

The ex-Santos Laguna and Birmingham City forward appeared 58 times for Ecuador during his career, scoring 24 goals.

The Doha-based club are yet to confirm the cause of Benitez's death.

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