Taribo West 'was 40 when he said he was 28', claims former Partizan Belgrade chief

Former Derby County, Plymouth and Inter Milan defender Taribo West has been accused of lying about his age.

The former Nigeria centre half, now retired, joined Serbian team Partizan Belgrade in 2002 after leaving Derby County and told club bosses he was 28.

But now the ex-president of Partizan, Zarko Zecevic, has accused him of lying, saying the defender was actually 40.

Accusation: Taribo West was 40 - not 28 as he claimed - when he played for Partizan Belgrade, according to the club's former president Zarko Zecevic

Ram raider: West (right) challenges Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink while playing in the Premier League for Derby County

'He joined us saying he was 28. We only later found out he was 40, but he was still playing well so I don’t regret having him on the team,' Zecevic said.

But according to the Croatian media, the former defender known for his colourful hairstyles also lied when trying to join Croatia’s Rijeka club.

At the age of 44, they said West told club doctors he was only 32.

It was only after an examination that the doctors raised suspicions with the club because West’s knees suggested he was older.

He wasn’t signed to the team but later joined Plymouth and then Iranian side Paykan FC, where he ended his career at the age of 46 in 2008.

Today his Wikipedia entry says he is 39.

Milan spells: West made his name with Inter Milan but also played a few games for rivals AC (below)

Blue boy: West with Teddy Shedingham during Sir Alex Ferguson's testimonial match

Super Eagle: The Nigeria defender coloured his hair green to go with his national side's kit at France 98

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