Luis “Matador” Tejada, a Panama soccer legend, died suddenly after collapsing Sunday at a veterans soccer game outside Panama City. The former soccer player is believed to have suffered cardiac arrest prior to his death.
According to The Daily Caller, Tejada was a former Panama striker who played 108 games for Panama’s national soccer team. With 43 goals, Tejada holds the record for the most goals scored by a player on Panama’s soccer team.
The Panamanian Football Federation confirmed the former Panama soccer striker’s death in a post on X, formerly Twitter.
According to ESPN, local media reported that Tejada collapsed during a veterans game near Panama City and was transported to a local clinic, where the famous soccer player was pronounced dead. Reports have suggested that Tejada died as the result of a heart attack.
“It was a cardiac arrest. He asked to be substituted and left the game. Outside the field, he collapsed and was taken by ambulance to Santa Librada Polyclinic (on the outskirts of Panama City), where he was pronounced dead,” an anonymous source close to the famous soccer player reportedly said.
Celebrating the legacy of Tejada, who was instrumental in Panama’s qualification for the country’s first World Cup in 2018, the Panamanian Football Federation explained that the soccer player was “synonymous of development and football” in Panama, adding, “We express our sincere condolences. We will never forget you matador.”
In another post, the Panamanian Football Federation wrote, “The number 18 in the national team #PanamáMayor has always been and will always be synonymous with our eternal scorer Luis ‘Matador’ Tejada. Fly high legend, you will always be in our hearts.”
One social media user posted a tribute to Tejada alongside a cartoon graphic of the famous Panama soccer player, highlighting the soccer star’s legacy.
“We lost a great local footballer today,” X user Pana Lemon wrote. “He died from heart attack, but his legacy from being a top goalscorer and sending my country to their first World Cup will always be remembered.”