Tributes to former England and Middlesbrough defender Ugo Ehiogu

Former England, Middlesbrough and Aston Villa defender Ugo Ehiogu has died aged 44, Tottenham have announced.
Former England, Middlesbrough and Aston Villa defender Ugo Ehiogu has died aged 44, Tottenham have announced.

Tributes have been paid to former Middlesbrough and England player Ugo Ehiogu, who has died aged 44.

Ehiogu, who worked as Under-23 coach at Tottenham Hotspur, collapsed at Spurs' training centre on Thursday after suffering a cardiac arrest.

Ugo received immediate treatment after suffering a cardiac arrest at the Training Centre yesterday before being transferred to hospital, where he passed away in the early hours of this morning.

John McDermott, head of coaching and player development at Spurs, said: "Words cannot express the shock and sadness that we all feel at the Club.

"Ugo’s immense presence will be irreplaceable. Our heartfelt sympathies go out to his wife Gemma and his family."

A statement added: "The Club sends its deepest condolences to Ugo’s family. Gemma has specifically asked that the family are given privacy at this difficult time.

"We should also like to place on record our thanks to all the medical professionals including those at North Middlesex University Hospital, Royal Brompton Hospital and Harefield Hospital for their care and support."

Tributes have been made across football.

The tribute on the official @England Twitter account read: "We're devastated to hear the news that Ugo Ehiogu has passed away. Our thoughts and sympathies are with all lucky enough to know him."

Middlesbrough tweeted: "MFC are deeply saddened to learn of the tragic passing of our former player Ugo Ehiogu. Our thoughts go out to Ugo's friends and family."

Ehiogu's former club Villa, for whom he played more than 300 games, tweeted: "We are deeply saddened to hear of the death of our former defender Ugo Ehiogu.

"Our thoughts are with his family at this terribly sad time."

The club added: "We will be holding a minute's applause before our derby with @BCFC...

"Both sets of players will wear black armbands as a mark of respect."

The former West Bromwich Albion, Aston Villa and Middlesbrough player won four caps for England, scoring once in a win over Spain in 2001.

He also represented the Three Lions at Under-21 and B level in a career that also saw him play for Sheffield United and Glasgow Rangers.

More recently, the 44-year-old had been working for Tottenham Hotspur as their U23 coach having graduated through the Pro Licence course at St. George’s Park, during which he was part of the coaching staff for England U20s at the World Cup in Turkey in 2013.

FA Chairman Greg Clarke said: "On behalf of The FA, my sincere condolences are with the friends and family of Ugo Ehiogu and his colleagues at Tottenham Hotspur at this desperately sad time.

"A hugely popular figure across English football but particularly at Aston Villa and Middlesbrough, he was also close to many at Wembley and St. George’s Park through his England connections – both as a player and as a coach.

"He will be much missed by the game he served so well."