Mike Jones, who was working with MLS side New York Red Bulls, was stabbed to death near Union square early on Sunday morning. The 25 year old was found with a severed ear and multiple stabs wounds around his head and chest near Manhattan.
Jones, who coached the New York youth side, was pronounced dead upon his arrival at Bellevue Hospital. The NYPD has confirmed that a homicide investigation is taking place to capture the attacker.
Also, CCTV footage of the attacker has been released to the media in hope that members of the public may recognize who the man is. It is understood that the killer could have mistaken Jones for another man he fought with in a bar.
He was said to be out with his girlfriend the night of his death and was seen arguing with a man.
Medics who answered the emergency call found him at 04:30 on West 14 Street with stab wounds to his neck and chest.
Jones, who is originally from England, will be missed by many – colleagues, friends and loved ones.
Mike coached players from the ages of seven to thirteen for a programme run by the New York Red Bulls.
A statement was released from the MLS side by a spokesperson:
“We are aware of this tragedy and on behalf of the entire organisation, want to send our most heartfelt condolences to Michael’s family, friends and loved ones. He was a tremendous individual, a fantastic coach who loved soccer and a terrific friend for many of us.
This is truly a sad day for our soccer community and we will do our utmost to help authorities in their investigation of this case. Our thoughts and prayers are with Michael’s family at this time.”
John Parkinson, the treasurer for Tarleton Corinthians where Jones was a former player, released a statement expressing his sadness:
“We are trying to come to terms with it. He was a genuine lad, no trouble. He was not a lad who would look for trouble or anything like that. He is not the sort of lad that would be up to no good … It’s a big shock to us. We are stunned.”
His former manager also conveyed his disbelief:
“I feel anger, upset and absolute devastation. You wouldn’t want that to happen to anyone. Mike was such a nice guy – down to earth, outgoing, funny, always up for some banter but he knew when to be serious, loving and caring.”
His family are said to be in a “state of shock” as they were contacted soon after his death by the British Foreign Office. Mr Jones was understood to be a former student of Tarleton High School and Edge Hill University, Southport.
Written by Siobhan Pedroza
Follow her on Twitter @briefcase_wanka
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