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Match to remember gifted footballer, 20, found dead at home.

Byline: KELLY WILLIAMS Daily Post Chief Reporter kelly.williams@reachplc.com

A CHARITY match will be held in memory of a gifted footballer who was found dead at home.

Joel Darlington was described as a "bubbly person" who "aways had a smile on his face" and was "loved by many."

Now his team mates are organising "one last game for Joel" to remember the 20-year-old from Gellifor, Denbighshire.

An inquest opening held last month gave a provisional cause of death as hanging.

A full hearing is expected to take place later this year.

Friend Matthew Pleavin said: "Joel was a bubbly character who always had a smile on his face, he was a genuine nice guy and and will be deeply missed by everyone. His death came as a real shock.

"He had played for several local football teams and was remembered as an incredible talent.

"Joel first played junior football for Ruthin winning the treble in the first season of the youth team before signing for Bala Town Academy.

"He also had spells for Llangynhafal FC in the Llandyrnog and District Village Football Summer League.

"Joel had previously been given a six week trial at Manchester United, but it had to be cut short after he broke his arm.

"Our fundraiser event is called 'One last game for Joel.' "RIP Joel, this game is for you."

Joel signed for Shrewsbury for four years before returning to Maes Tegid, signing for the first team in January 2017.

Joel also represented Wales at youth level and was the academy's top goalscorer during 2016/17.

Llangynhafal FC said: "Joel Darlington was a gifted footballer, but more importantly a deeply valued friend.

"Many of the lads have memories with Joel that will be cherished for a lifetime.

"We send our deepest condolences to Shaun, Dawn, Chris, Kyran, Lauren, Joel's extended family and his friends.

"A big presence both on and off the pitch, we will miss you dearly Joel, rest easy up there mate."

The talented footballer also played for Denbigh Town Football Club, after being signed in June 2017.

| The charity match will take place on Friday, April 19 (Good Friday) at Lon Fawr pitch.

Kick off is at 6.30pm.

CAPTION(S):

| Joel Darlington who was regarded as an "incredible talent."

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Publication:Daily Post (Conwy, Wales)
Article Type:Obituary
Date:Apr 16, 2019
Words:380
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