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Tribute to footballer full of promise

PUBLISHED: 18:01 02 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:36 03 March 2010

THE MANAGER of the football team Daniel Williams played for today paid tribute to the promising young player who died when falling from a hotel balcony.

THE MANAGER of the football team Daniel Williams played for today paid tribute to the promising young player who died when falling from a hotel balcony.

David Parsons, manager of Needham A team, also said that as a mark of respect a minute's silence will be held at tonight's home game against Leiston Town where (Tues) the Needham first team will be wearing black arm bands.

Mr Parsons added: "Daniel was one of the nicest people you could wish to meet.

"He was liked by everybody. He was always smiling, just a really nice guy. He had no enemies. It is just total shock and disbelief that something like this should happen."

The 27-year-old lost his life when he plunged from a hotel balcony on holiday in Cyprus after a prank went horribly wrong. He was due to return home that day.

Meanwhile a heartfelt tribute written by his best friend will be read by thousands of Ipswich Town fans at the club's next home game.

The football club has promised to include a special message in memory of Mr Williams in the match programme of Town's clash against Everton on October 13.

His best friend Matt Elliot, of Roy Avenue, Ipswich, said Mr Williams had been a dedicated Blues fan and had followed the club's progress since he was a toddler.

"He would have loved the fact that Ipswich Town were doing something like this and would have been so pleased to see his name included in one of the programmes," said the 26-year-old, who works for electricity supplier 24seven.

For the past four seasons Daniel, of Battisford, played in Division Three of the Suffolk and Ipswich League (SIL) and last season he was voted Player's Player of the year.

Of the three games the team played so far this season Daniel had scored four of the eight goals.

In his last game on September 15, Daniel scored a hat trick in a 4-1 victory against Walsham-le-Willows.

Mr Parsons said: "Today I have been phoning the players on Daniel's team and their reactions had been one of pure disbelief - actual shock. It is horrendous I am lost for words.

"He was the second oldest member in our team. We have a lot of 17 and 18-year-old boys joining and Daniel was one of the players the younger ones looked up to.

"It is just so very sad for Needham Market football club with a player of Daniel's ability, you just can't replace them that easily - as a player or individual.

"He was certainly coming up to the right age. You play your best football when you are about 30-years-old.

"He was at the highlight of his career really. He had impressed people really greatly these last two seasons. The award the players gave him showed respect towards that."

A club game was coming up the first Saturday Daniel was away.

Mr Parsons said: "The last words that Daniel said as he was going out the club house a fortnight ago was "Make sure you get victory for me lads so I can be in the next round."

"The team did and unfortunately Daniel won't be there to play. It is a great loss. Not only as a player but was such a nice guy as well."

Daniel was trying to jump from one first floor balcony to another while joking with friends.

He died from head injuries at the scene after slipping and falling three metres to the ground at the holiday resort of Ayia Napa.

It is thought Daniel had a T-shirt printed and was trying to put it on a friend's balcony as a surprise.

People will have an opportunity to pay tribute to Daniel via the club's website on

www.needhammarketfc.fsnet.co.uk

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