Shock at death of ex-Norther Ireland captain Alan McDonald, 48
Saturday 23 June 2012
The sudden death of former Northern Ireland football captain Alan McDonald at the age of 48 is devastating news, a close friend from the sport said.
Sammy McIlroy said he was stunned to hear of the loss of his former team mate.
The QPR stalwart won 52 caps for his country and was a member of Northern Ireland's World Cup side in 1986.
McDonald went on to manage Glentoran, winning the Irish League title in 2009, and also coached his country's under-21 side.
An Irish Football Association spokesman said: "We are deeply shocked at the death of Alan, who won over 50 caps for Northern Ireland. To die at such a young age is terrible."
Former Northern Ireland manager Sammy McIlroy, a close friend and former team-mate of McDonald's, said: "I'm shell-shocked. Words can't even enter my head at the moment.
"Forty-eight is so young. Alan was always larger than life - during his career and after.
"I've just spoken to Norman Whiteside and he is devastated."
The Belfast-born footballer was said to have died suddenly while playing golf.
A short statement was also posted on the IFA's official website.
"The Irish FA is saddened by this morning's news of the sudden death of Alan McDonald. Our thoughts are with his family at this time," it read.
Latest in Sport
Laura Trott and Jason Kenny announce engagement
Jose Mourinho says Chelsea deserve to be setting pace going into Christmas fixtures
Manchester United vs Newcastle United preview: Alan Pardew targets rare Old Trafford win to halt Newcastle slump
Sir Alex Ferguson on Jose Mourinho: 'He's good looking, speaks five languages, wins everything - it's unfair'
Arsenal vs QPR: Leroy Fer seeks perfect present for Boxing Day
- 1 PlayStation and Xbox hacked by Lizard Squad
- 2 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 4 Vagina canoe artist defends herself over ‘obscenity’ charges
- 5 The Queen’s speech 2014: Recap and Twitter reaction to Game of Thrones reference
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Alex Salmond has 'broken his word to the Scottish people' says Scottish Lib Dem leader