Local tributes paid to 'talented' Lancashire football coach

Mike Jones' former school and university have paid tribute to the youth football coach who was stabbed to death in New York yesterday.

Simon Bland, the 25-year-old's PE teacher at Tarleton High School, Lancashire, told local newspaper The Champion:

He had a lot of natural talent. But unlike a lot of people who are good at sport he wasn't big-headed or full of himself in any way - he just got on with it, and was quiet, but very professional and talented ... he was someone you could use as a role model for the younger pupils, because he not only had a lot of natural ability, but he had a great attitude too.

– PE teacher Simon Bland

A spokesperson for Edge Hill University in Ormskirk, which Mr Jones graduated from in 2008, added:

He was a hardworking student who was popular with his peers and with staff from the Department of Sport and Physical Activity. He had a bright future ahead of him, having a forged a successful coaching career in the USA following his graduation.

– Edge Hill University spokesperson

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