The former clubs and team-mates of Liam Miller have joined the outpouring of tributes paid to the former Celtic and Manchester United midfielder, who died on Friday aged 36.
Miller, who earned 21 caps for the Republic of Ireland and also played for Sunderland, Leeds United and his hometown club Cork City, revealed he was battling pancreatic cancer in November. He leaves behind his wife Clare and three children.
Wayne Rooney, who played with Miller at United, tweeted: “Gutted to hear the sad news about Liam Miller. Thoughts are with his family and friends.” Rooney’s team-mate Michael Carrick added: “Terribly sad to hear the news of Liam Miller passing away this morning. Liam was at utd when I first signed. Same age as me. So very sad. Thoughts and prayers with his friends and family.”
His former team-mate at Cork City, Alan Bennett, also posted an emotional message. “In 5 months Liam Miller’s life changed dramatically. His young children & wife, his family, his friends lives changed forever. The future is guaranteed to no one. Brutal Sad-humble, funny, extremely talented and privilege to watch & play football with. Rest in peace Liam x.”
Cambridge United’s Irish manager Shaun Derry described Miller as “a gifted footballer and a true gentleman” while the former United and Ireland defender Paul McGrath said he was “taken way too soon.”
The wider world of football and sport paid tribute including Fifa, Rangers and Munster Rugby. Irish rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll tweeted: “Awful to wake up to the sad news of Liam Miller’s passing. I didn’t know him but like the rest of the country I felt I did. Thoughts are with his young family. May he RIP.”
Celtic held a minute’s silence before their Scottish Premiership game against Partick Thistle on Saturday, as did Melbourne City, another of Miller’s former clubs, before their match against Sydney FC.