Liam Miller: A Tragic Loss for Football

Former Manchester United and Celtic star, Liam Miller, has passed away at the tender age of just 36. The Irish midfielder, who won 21 caps for the Republic of Ireland, had been suffering from pancreatic cancer.

After starting his career at Celtic, Miller’s footballing potential took him to Old Trafford for the start of the 2004/05 season. Miller then made 22 senior appearances for the Reds, before spending a spell on loan at Leeds United and then signing a three-year deal with Sunderland. The Irish international then went on to represent Queens Park Rangers, Hibernian, Perth Glory, Brisbane Roar and Melbourne City. After a short spell playing for his hometown club Cork City in 2015, he enjoyed success in America, playing for the Wilmington Hammerheads in North Carolina.

However, in November 2017, Liam announced that he was leaving the game to receive treatment for cancer. His short, but very brave battle sadly came to an end just last week. He leaves behind a wife and three young children.

This week football has put rivalries aside to pay tribute to not only an excellent footballer but an incredibly popular man.

His former boss Sir Alex Ferguson, who he played under at Manchester United, made a heartfelt statement: “I am very sad to hear that Liam has died. He was a good professional, who served our club in an excellent manner. He was a quiet, unassuming young man and was popular with everyone at Carrington. On behalf of all my staff who worked with Liam at the time, we send our deepest sympathy to his family.”

Fellow Corkman Ronan O’Gara tweeted: “Brutal news to wake up to. Too many young men being taken from us. Thoughts with his fans in Cork and worldwide, his teammates, his parents, his lovely wife, sons and daughter. Very difficult to accept. RIP Liam. Cork Legend.”

The impact of Liam Miller’s premature death has been felt by sports fans across the globe. Premier League and SPL sides have worn black armbands in remembrance of the young man this weekend, and no doubt, Miller’s talent and exceptional attitude towards the game will resonate with people for years to come. 

By Eva Curless