Thursday 24 May 2018

Former Arsenal and Chelsea midfielder denies rumours he has become a jihadist in the Syria war

Lassana Diarra
Lassana Diarra

Former Premier League player Lassana Diarra has denied rumours on social media websites that he had become a jihadist in the Syria war.

The Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder "denies in the most formal, the most categoric, the most absolute fashion that he has gone to Syria," said Diarra's lawyer Eric Dupond Moretti.

"He has never set foot in Syria. It's absurd. He is not a jihadist, he is a footballer with Lokomotiv Moscow," the lawyer added.

It was rumoured this week that Diarra, who used to play for Chelsea, Arsenal and Portsmouth, had gone to Syria where the war is now into a fourth year and has cost the lives of over 150,000 people, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The lawyer said Diarra, 29, is expected to take part in Lokomotiv's league game on Sunday.

Diarra, who was a member of the Real Madrid squad that won the Spanish league title in 2012, last played for France in 2010.

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