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Gary Speed 'found hanged after row'

Former Wales football manager Gary Speed was found hanged in his home after rowing with his wife, his inquest has heard.

Speed and his wife Louise had been going through "ups and downs" but were "working through" their problems, she told the hearing at Warrington Coroners Court.

The couple, who married in 1996, were arguing against a background of "stresses" connected to the 42-year-old's job managing the Welsh national team, Cheshire Coroner Nicholas Rheinberg was told.

They "had words" in the hours before he was found dead at 7am on Sunday, November 27, last year, after returning home from a dinner party at a friend's house. Mrs Speed told the hearing: "We walked in the house and we had an exchange of words about something and nothing."

After becoming locked out of the house and spending the night in her car, Mrs Speed found her husband dead in the garage of their home in Huntington, Cheshire.

Recording a narrative verdict, Mr Rheinberg gave the cause of death as hanging but said "the evidence does not sufficiently determine whether this was intentional or accidental". He said Speed had been sitting for some time with a ligature around his neck and may have "nodded off to sleep" with it still in place.

Earlier, Mrs Speed told the hearing that her husband had talked of taking his life in a text exchange about five days earlier.

She said: "He talked in terms about taking his own life and then he moved on and talked about moving forward and how important the boys were to him. It was in the context of the ups and downs of our marriage. The texts went on about our future together and how excited he was about our journey together."

Asked if the Wales job was forcing him to spend more time away from his family, Mrs Speed said: "I think he was spending more hours there than he thought he would do initially."

Mr Rheinberg then asked if it was difficult for both of them "spending long periods apart?", to which she replied: "Yes." The coroner then asked if this had "put some degree of stress" on their relationship. She responded: "I would say so, yes."


From Belfast Telegraph