A former soccer player for Barranquilla's Atletico Junior was gunned down and the case is being investigated by the Metropolitan Police of that Colombian city on the Caribbean, officials said.

Cristian Racero was murdered early Sunday.

The star winger, who played between 2000-2006 with the Junior squad, moved on to Atletico Huila in 2007 and to Venezuela's Minerven in 2008.

Racero later played for Boyaca Chico and the Patriotas, both home teams of the central municipality of Tunja, until he retired from professional soccer in 2010.

At 5:00 a.m. Sunday a group of people accompanying the former soccer star began quarreling with a man who, infuriated, left to go home but soon returned with a gun and shot Racero in the abdomen, Barranquilla's El Heraldo newspaper reported on its Web site, citing eyewitnesses.

Racero was taken to the Prado Clinic where he died an hour later.

The ex-athlete was born on April 24, 1981, in San Bernardo del Viento, a city in the northwestern province of Cordoba. EFE