OBITUARY: Francois Sterchele

Francois Sterchele, the leading scorer in the 2006-07 Belgian First Division, was killed Thursday morning after he lost control of his Porsche and hit a tree near the city of Antwerp.

Sterchele, 26, had been capped four times for Belgium and was completing the first year of a five-year contract at Club Brugge. He had scored 11 goals with one game to play in the 2007-08 season.

He was remembered as a player who played like he lived -- going all out all the time. One Belgian newspaper called him Belgian soccer's "bling-bling" player.

Last season with Germinal Beerschot, Sterchele was the top scorer in Belgium's Juliper League with 21 goals.

Sterchele, born in the eastern city of Liege from a family with Italian roots, was a late bloomer. He only made his debut in the top level of Belgian soccer three years.

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