Ex-England schoolboy footballer dies after being hit at 'car meet' – BBC


A footballer has died after being struck by a vehicle at a "car meet" in Cheshire.
Former England schoolboy international Sam Harding was struck by a black Audi S3 at Kingsland Grange in Warrington on Sunday night, police said.
The 20-year-old from Stockport was taken to hospital and later pronounced dead.
A 21-year-old man from Leeds was arrested at the scene on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.
Mr Harding's family described him as a "sweet angel" and "a much loved son, brother, grandson, nephew and friend to many".
Mr Harding played for North West Counties Football League (NWCFL) Premier Division side Ashton Athletic, based in Ashton-in-Makerfield in Greater Manchester.
Chairman Jimmy Whyte said everybody at the club was "devastated".
"Sam was only at our club for one season and was a huge factor in our improved form since his arrival," he said.
"He was a quiet, well-mannered young man and will be sorely missed by everyone."
His former club FC United of Manchester also paid tribute to him.
Academy manager Tom Conroy said he had been "one of the best academy players we have ever had and that was proven when he was successful in England schoolboy trials, earning caps for his country".
"Sam is always spoken about to future academy players as a perfect example of the type of player we want at the club, not only with regards to… footballing ability, but the type of person he was – kind, polite, hard working and professional," he said.
"He will be sadly missed and I would like to pass my love and condolences to Sam's family."
In a tweet, NWCFL said Mr Harding's "dedication and sheer love for the game will always be remembered", while another of his former sides, Glossop North End, said the club was "shocked and deeply saddened" by his death.
All of us at the NWCFL are devastated by the passing of Sam Harding and send our most sincere condolences to his family.

A tragic loss for our footballing community, Sam's dedication and sheer love for the game will always be remembered💛💙 https://t.co/N6KGu12fDE
GNE is shocked & deeply saddened to hear of the tragic passing of former player, Sam Harding, who sadly passed away last night aged just 20. Sam came through @glossopjuniors & we all join together in sending our deepest & sincere condolences to Sam's family at this difficult time pic.twitter.com/61rziXeGFZ
The club are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Sam Harding, who was killed in a car accident last night. Sam made a number of appearances for Prescot Cables during the 2019-2020 season. Our thoughts are with his friends, former teammates and family at this time. RIP Sam. pic.twitter.com/Ka5yxRJ5hb
Sgt Simon Degg said inquiries were in "the early stages".
"We know that there were a large number of people present at the car meet and as part of our investigation we are keen to hear from witnesses," he said.
"The same goes for anyone with any video footage from the event.
"I'd urge anyone with any information, no matter how small, to get in touch."
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