Former Premier League footballer Jlloyd Samuel has died aged 37 in a car crash which unfolded shortly after he dropped his children off at school.
The ex-Aston Villa, Bolton and England Under 21s defender was involved in a collision near his home in Cheshire this morning, it has emerged.
The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association, for whose national team Samuel appeared, announced his death on their official Facebook page.
Former footballer Jlloyd Samuel – pictured with his interior designer wife Emma Pritchard – has died in a car crash which happened shortly after he dropped their children off at school
Samuel, who has three children, had just dropped some of the youngsters off at school
Samuel played Aston Villa, Bolton and Charlton. Internationally, he appeared for England Under 21s before changing allegiances to Trinidad and Tobago
The two-vehicle crash involving a van and Samuel’s Range Rover occurred on West Lane in the village of High Legh shortly before 8am, with Cheshire Police closing the road and asking drivers to avoid the area.
Samuel lived with his wife Emma and three children – Javarne, Lakyle and Amara – in nearby Lymm.
The statement by Trinidad and Tobago’s Football Association read: ‘We’ve received some terrible news that former National defender and Ex-Aston Villa and Bolton Wanderers player Jlloyd Samuel died in a car crash this morning in England.
‘According to reports, Jlloyd was returning home after dropping his kids off to school and collided with an oncoming vehicle. His vehicle caught fire.
‘The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association and his former national team-mates at this time extends deepest condolences to his family members both in the UK and here in Trinidad and Tobago.’
Samuel (top row, third from left) played for the famed Senrab alongside John Terry as a child
Samuel played 228 times in the Premier League for Bolton (pictured) and Aston Villa
Tributes poured in from around the game.
Aston Villa, who team are playing in the Championship playoffs this evening, tweeted: ‘We are deeply saddened to hear of the death of our former player Jlloyd Samuel at the age of just 37 in a car accident.
‘Our players will wear black armbands as a mark of respect tonight and our thoughts are with his friends and family at this very difficult time.’
Bolton Wanderers tweeted: ‘Everybody associated with Bolton Wanderers Football Club is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our former defender, Jlloyd Samuel.
‘Rest in peace, Jlloyd. Our deepest condolences are with his family and friends at this difficult time.’
Samuel spent over a decade in the top flight but recently was managing non-League Egerton
1998-2007: Aston Villa
—-> 2001-2002: Gillingham
2007-2011: Bolton Wanderers
—-> 2011: Cardiff City (loan)
Samuel finished playing top-level football in England back in 2011, moving to Iran, but returned to play non-League in Cheshire as recently as this season.
It is understood he and fellow former professional Nathan Ellington were player-managers at Egerton FC in the 12th tier of English football.
It is understood that the man who was driving the van sustained serious injuries and was immediately taken to hospital for treatment.
Firefighters also attended the crash near Lymm as one of the vehicles was ‘well alight’ near Costcutter.