Non-league footballer Jordan Sinnott has died in hospital after being assaulted.
Sinnott, who played for Matlock Town on loan from Alfreton Town, was found unconscious with a suspected fractured skull following a disturbance in Retford, Nottinghamshire, in the early hours of Saturday morning.
A statement from Keith Brown, chief executive of Matlock Town, said the 25-year-old midfielder died on Saturday evening.
The statement said: “His family and friends were with him at his bedside and we send our sincere condolences to them all at this very sad time.”
You weren't just a footballer, you were our friend and brother. You gave us incredible memories and scored your first career hat-trick in your final game for the club.— Matlock Town FC (@Matlock_TownFC) January 25, 2020
Nottinghamshire Police said a murder investigation has now been launched.
Officers initially responded to reports of up to eight men and women being involved in a disturbance in the Dominie Cross pub car park in Grove Street shortly after 11.25pm on Friday.
They were later called to assist ambulance crews attempting to treat Mr Sinnott after he was discovered unconscious with a suspected fractured skull following a subsequent incident at around 2am in Market Place.
Sinnott died in hospital shortly before 6pm, the force said.
Our hearts are broken.— Alfreton Town FC (@AlfretonTownFC) January 25, 2020
Officers said a 27-year-old man who was arrested shortly after the incident on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm remains in custody.
Detective Inspector Justine Wilson issued a fresh plea for anyone with any information about the two “large-scale disturbances” in the town centre to contact police.
She said: “Mr Sinnott’s death is a sad and significant development in this investigation.
“Our thoughts remain with Mr Sinnott’s friends and family, who our specialist officers are continuing to support at this incredibly difficult time.
This is how we choose to remember Jordan Sinnott.— Matlock Town FC (@Matlock_TownFC) January 25, 2020
“Our investigative team’s focus will remain on identifying those responsible and bringing them to justice and, while we have made one arrest at an early stage of our inquiries, we are appealing to anyone who was in Retford town centre late last night and in the early hours of this morning to come forward.
“This incident happened at a very busy time and we believe there are still a number of witnesses who have still not yet come forward who may hold vital information about how a young man came to lose his life so tragically.”
Two other men were also injured during the incidents. A 27-year-old man sustained a suspected broken nose, while a 44-year-old man suffered a suspected broken jaw.
Matlock Town had earlier tweeted that their Saturday away game against Mickleover Sports had been postponed due to “tragic and unforeseen circumstances”.
UPDATE:— Notts Police (@nottspolice) January 25, 2020
Sinnott’s parent club, Alfreton Town, had also called off their Saturday fixture following the incident.
A statement from Alfreton Town following his death said the club are “saddened and heartbroken”.
It added: “Jordan was a model footballer and an exceptional talent during his time at the Impact Arena and had a close affinity with both the manager, assistant and the players he took the field with.
“Rest easy Sinbad, we will never forget you.”
The midfielder, from Bradford, is the son of football manager and former Bradford and Huddersfield player Lee Sinnott.
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