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Tributes for former Rangers ace Arnold Peralta gunned down in Honduras


Arnold Peralta

Arnold Peralta


The scene of the shooting in a shopping centre car park in La Ceiba in which Arnold Peralta was killed

The scene of the shooting in a shopping centre car park in La Ceiba in which Arnold Peralta was killed

© Diez TV

Arnold Peralta

A former midfielder for Rangers Football Club has been shot dead in his home town in Honduras.

Arnold Peralta, who also played for the Honduran national team, was found dead in the car park of a shopping centre in La Ceiba.

The 26-year-old played with Rangers for 18 months.

The club have said it would hold a minute's silence before today's game against Morton and the players will wear black armbands in his honour. Peralta left the club in January, returning home to play for Club Deportivo Olimpia after helping Rangers win the 2013-14 Scottish League One title.

He had won 24 caps for his country and played at both the 2014 World Cup and the 2012 London Olympics.

His father Carlos spoke of the devastating pain he was feeling at the news. "This is terrible - they killed my exemplary son," he said. "I can't say more because of the pain I feel."

A statement posted on their Facebook page read: "Rangers Football Club is deeply shocked and saddened to hear the tragic news about former player Arnold Peralta.

"Our thoughts go out to Arnold's family and friends at this very difficult time.

"The club will pay its respects with a minute's silence before tomorrow's game against Morton. The players will also wear black armbands in his honour."

Kris Boyd, who spent six months playing alongside the midfielder at Rangers, said: "It's just tragic. I don't really know the ins and outs of it, so all I can do is pass on my condolences to his family.

"He was always somebody who would come into training with a smile on his face. He worked hard and did everything to the best of his ability.

"I only knew Arnie for a few months, but I knew exactly how he was as a person. The biggest tragedy for me is that there is a partner there now who will have to bring up a child by herself."

Rangers striker Nicky Clark posted a picture of himself hugging Peralta on Twitter and wrote: "Horrible news this morning, RIP Arnie."

The Honduran Ministry of Security said the car park had its own private security, and robbery had been ruled out as a motive because the victim had not been stripped of his belongings.

Director of the Honduran national football federation Osman Madrid added: "This is a tragic death that the national sport mourns."

Peralta's club has also expressed its sympathies online.

Belfast Telegraph