Tribute to footballer killed in crash

Danny Birch who died in a car crash in Coppull
Danny Birch who died in a car crash in Coppull
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A talented footballer was killed in a car crash hours after celebrating a win for his team.

Former Albany Science College pupil Daniel Birch scored in Croston Sports Club reserve team’s 4-1 win over Gillibrand Saints on Saturday, just hours before he was involved in an accident.

The 23-year-old died after losing control of his green Ford Focus car on the A5106 Wigan Road in Coppull at around 4am.

Today, tributes have been paid to a “treasured son” and talented centre half.

In a statement, Daniel’s family said: “Our most darling treasured son, brother, grandson and everyone’s best mate he would do anything for anyone.

“He lived his life for every moment but his moments too few he leaves a hole that can never be filled he will be deeply missed forever in our hearts and never ever forgotten.”

Jon Hayes, headteacher of Albany Science College said: “He was a lovely, caring hard working young man, who in Year 11 became a prefect.

“He was popular and well liked by both staff and pupils. Our thoughts are with his family at this sad time.”

His manager Jason Clarke described him as ‘a good guy and a great centre half.’

Craig Howard, secretary of Croston Sports Club Football, said: “This is heart-breaking news, and everyone at Croston Sports Club would like to pay tribute to Danny.

“He will be sorely missed.

“Arrangements will now be made with both the West Lancashire League and the Chorley Alliance League, so that a minute’s silence will be held before both the First team and Reserve Team’s games on Saturday.”

His fellow team-mates at FC Adlington from the Chorley Nissan Sunday League were also mourning.

A spokesman said: “Danny was one of the founding members of the club and played every other game when he was called upon.”

Meanwhile, police are appealing for more information about the incident.

Sgt John Wharton from the road policing unit said: “I would appeal to anyone who was in the area at the time and who may have witnessed something to come forward and contact the police.

“This is a very difficult time for the man’s family, and we have specially trained family liaison officers supporting them.”

Anyone with information about the incident should contact Lancashire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.