London, Sept.25 : British cops have quashed wild rumours suggesting that troubled former England soccer ace Paul Gascoigne had died. According to The Sun, hundreds of fans bombarded police switchboards with calls asking if Gazza, 41 - who is battling booze and drug problems - was still alive. But Northumbria Police confirmed: "We've had lots of calls on this but there's absolutely no substance to it."
Footie websites were also besieged. Dozens rang in from Gazza's native North East and others from as far afield as Essex and Scotland.
Gazza, 41, was last week pictured trying to get into a pub in Gateshead before ten in the MORNING.
He had just returned from three weeks in Portugal, where he was rushed to hospital after a pills and booze overdose.