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Sudden death of Northern Ireland fan puts historic result 'into perspective' - IFA

Published 16/06/2016

Irish FA chief Patrick Nelson expresses sadness at death of a fan
Irish FA chief Patrick Nelson expresses sadness at death of a fan
Superintendent Nigel Goddard

There has been intense sadness at news a Northern Ireland fan died during the Euro 2016 match against Ukraine on Thursday.

The man, aged in his 60s, collapsed around 50 minutes into the match.

The PSNI said it has received confirmation from French Police tonight that he died at the Stadium in Lyon during the NI v Ukraine match.

PSNI Superintendent Nigel Goddard has spoken of his sadness at the death which comes just days after the Darren Rodgers tragically died earlier this week.

Euro 2016: Northern Ireland fans pay respects to tragic Darren Rodgers in Nice

The senior police officer who is in France to help act as a liaison with French police said the man's family has been contacted.

"Our thoughts are tragically with a second family this week mourning the devastating loss of their loved one," he said.

"We understand the man aged in his sixties collapsed during the game and was attended to by emergency services in the Stade de Lyon.

"It is extremely sad that this is the second death of a Northern Ireland fan in France during the Euro 2016 games.

"We have been liaising with French Authorities and local PSNI officers have been in touch with the man's family in Belfast."

The Foreign Office has confirmed it is providing support to the family of a British national who has sadly died in France, adding that the man died of natural causes.

The Irish Football Association has expressed its deep sadness at the man's death.

Irish FA Chief Executive Patrick Nelson said it puts the historic result of the game into perspective.

“The fan passed away as he was watching the game in the stadium. This puts any result of a football match into perspective," he said.

“The thoughts of the board, management, players and staff are with his family and friends at this sad time.”

Northern Ireland Sports Minister Paul Givan, who was at the match in Lyon, also expressed his sadness.

He said his thoughts and prayers are with the man's family.

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