- Samuel Oji spent four years with Arsenal as a teenager between 2000 and 2004 when he moved to Birmingham City
- The former defender went on to make appearances for several lower-tier teams in England including Leyton Orient and Bristol Rovers
- Oji has been serving as an assistant manager at non-league outfit Highgate United who mourned him as "a leader and legend"
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Arsenal have been plunged into mourning following the unfortunate and tragic death of former youth star, Samuel Oji.
Oji started off his career as a youngster with the Gunners in 2000 but failed to make the grade.
He subsequently moved to Birmingham in 2004 and went on to turn out for a number of English clubs including Doncaster Rovers, Leyton Orient, Bristol Rovers and Hereford United.
Until his death, the former defender was an assistant manager at non-league outfit Highgate United who ply their trade in the Midland League Premier Division.
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Oji's tragic death was confirmed by the ninth tier English side, with the club mourning the 35-year-old as "a leader and legend."
"All it is with a very heavy heart that I am deeply saddened to inform you, that our beloved Captain, Leader and Legend Samuel Oji has sadly passed away," the club said in a statement.
The former player's death came only hours after Highgate United denied media reports he had passed away.
In a tweet sent earlier, the club admitted Oji was "extremely I'll" but "still fighting like a warrior."
Several tributes have since been sent out in the wake of the tragic news, with Leyton Orient and Arsenal among the clubs who have mourned him.
"We are deeply saddened by the news that Samuel Oji has passed away. A graduate from our academy, he was loved by coaches and teammates alike," Arsenal said in a tweet.
"Our thoughts and condolences are with Samuel’s friends and family," the club added.
Vinny O'Connor, his former teammate at Galway United described Oji as "friendly and accommodating."
"Infectious smile, bubbly personality, always friendly and accommodating," The Sun quoted O'Connor saying.
Meanwhile YEN.com.gh earlier reported that Arsenal are already weighing up their option of bringing ex-Chelsea boss Antonio Conte to replace Mikel Arteta.
Manager Arteta has been heavily criticised and he is under pressure to deliver in their next five league matches before the international break in October.