O’Neill pays tribute to second dead Irish fan


Saint-Georges-de-Reneins (France) (AFP) – Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill paid tribute to a second Irish supporter dead at Euro 2016, whilst following the British minnows in France on Friday.

Robert Rainey, 62, is understood to have suffered a heart attack at the Stade de Lyon as Northern Ireland won their first match at a major finals for 34 years 2-0 over Ukraine on Thursday.

He was treated in the stands, but attempts to revive him failed.

“We were all shocked when we heard this sad news after the game,” said O’Neill in a statement released by the Irish Football Association (IFA).

“The thoughts of all the players and the backroom staff are with Robert’s family and friends at this time.”

Another Northern Irish fan, Darren Rodgers, 24, fell to his death from a beachside promenade in the southern city of Nice on Monday.

The IFA said they will request the Irish players wear black armbands for Tuesday’s final group game in Paris against Germany as a mark of respect to Rainey.

Northern Ireland sit in third place behind Germany and Poland in Group C, but even a point against the world champions would give them an excellent chance of qualifying for the last 16 as one of the four best third-placed sides from the six groups to progress to the knockout stage.

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