A former Preston North End youth player has appeared in court charged with the murder of an off-duty police officer.
Christopher Spendlove, 30, appeared at Liverpool Crown Court alongside Andrew Taylor, 28, after being charged with the murder of PC Neil Doyle.
The 36-year-old officer died following an attack in Liverpool in the early hours of Friday morning which left two of his colleagues injured.
Spendlove, from Brandearth Hey, Stockbridge Village, played for Everton and Preston North End as a schoolboy and is currently listed as an assistant coach at American side Oklahoma Energy FC.
Spendlove and Taylor, from Huyton, both spoke only to confirm their identities. They both stand accused of the murder of Neil Doyle on December 19, together with charges of unlawfully and maliciously wounding Michael Stephenson and Robert Marshall during the same incident.
The representatives of neither man sought a bail application and they were remanded in custody by Judge Clement Goldstone, QC, to await a preliminary hearing on January 6. A trial date will be set at the next hearing but it likely to be in the early summer.