Tributes pour in for former Cliftonville goalkeeper Paul Straney
'A legend of the local game'
Former Cliftonville goalkeeper Paul Straney has died, aged 42.
Straney played for the Reds between 2001 and 2007 and became a club legend with his wholehearted performances.
Kilmore Rec, with whom Straney had been coaching, called him 'a legend of the local game'.
A club statement read: "Absolutely devastating news of the passing of First Team Assistant Paul Straney tonight. A legend of the local game, a winner and a true gent.
"Paul brought passion, enthusiasm and a wealth of experience to Kilmore and he will be very sadly missed by all his friends at the club. We would like to pass on our sincere sympathy’s to Paul’s family and friends at this very sad time. RIP Paul."
Cliftonville chairman Gerard Lawlor said: "Sadly once again the Cliftonville family is in shock & mourning, not only have we lost a former player & coach but also a true friend, a Red & one of our own. Rip Paul Straney, thanks for all u did & achieved at Solitude. Deepest Sympathy to his family at this sad time."
A minute’s applause will be held before kick-off at Solitude on Saturday, when Cliftonville host Glentoran.
When news of his passing broke on Thursday night, tributes poured in on social media.
Paul Straney played with a passion, drive and focus that will forever make him a Cliftonvlle fans' favourite. As well as being a fantastic goalkeeper, he was also a very nice man whose off-pitch persona was far removed from the on-pitch madman who revelled in winding people up. pic.twitter.com/f6mALuInM3— Conor McLaughlin (@CMcLaughlin84) December 14, 2017
Paul Straney was the confident, competent, eccentric goalkeeper that you wanted on your side. Partial to the odd red card as he was fired up for every game, I have him to thank for saying that I have done nets in the Irish League! A real character who will be sorely missed 😢— Ciaran Donaghy (@ciarandonaghy) December 14, 2017
Thoughts are with all friends and family of former #Cliftonville goalkeeper/coach #PaulStraney after his passing. An absolute gentleman on and off the field always holding great knowledgable conversations into the coaching techniques of the game.— AMMG Sports (@AMMGSports) December 14, 2017
RIP Paul. #YouRed 🔴⚪ #NIFL pic.twitter.com/TXsw0xzuJb
Such terrible news at the passing of Paul Straney 😢 was a hero of mine growing up watching the reds and had the pleasure of getting to know him personally was a hell of a man ❤️ Rip mate gone way to soon. You red 🔴⚪️ ❤️❤️— Gary Warwick (@GazzaWarwick8) December 14, 2017
Belfast Telegraph Digital