The New York Red Bulls will be honouring the life of Michael Jones at their last home game of the season on Saturday.
The US Major League Soccer side has announced that tributes will be paid to the 25-year-old junior football coach, from Tarleton, ahead of their match against Sporting Kansas City in the Red Bull Arena.
Mr Jones was stabbed to death in New York on Sunday, October 7, in what is believed to have been a case of mistaken identity. The chief murder suspect, Orlando Orea, 32, remains at large in Mexico.
Prior to kick off at 7pm (local time), the club has asked that all fans join the team in a minute of celebration and applause to honour the former Tarleton Academy pupil, as a photo montage will be shown in memory of his life and all the work he did in his five-plus years with the Red Bulls’ youth programs.
On the field, all Red Bulls players will wear black armbands and the number six on their shorts, the number the passionate Liverpool FC supporter wore throughout his playing career.
Gerard Houllier, the former Liverpool manager who is head of global soccer for the Red Bulls, is expected to attend the game.
The club, managed by Jerome De Bontin, said fans could pass along condolences to Mr Jones’ family by stopping by a youth training programs tent in their interactive fan zone outside the arena from 5.30pm.
Armonk United SC, the club team Mr Jones was coaching at the time of his death, have also created a special memorial fund in his honour.
To find out more and to see how you can help, visit www.mikejonesmemorialfund.com.
Last weekend team-mates from Tarleton Corinthians, Mr Jones’s former club, held a minute’s silence for him before their match against Baxters FC.
The players released 25 red balloons, one for each year of his life, printed with the number six.
Meanwhile, Hesketh Bank AFC made a gesture by playing in Tarleton’s kit.