A British soccer player has died suddenly at just 30 years old, his team has confirmed.
Welsh player Charlie Batcup tragically passed away during a trip to the Netherlands.
Batcup’s devastated team, Pontlliw FC in Swansea, South Wales, has paid tribute to the “heartbeat” of the sport.
Batcup was described as a “dear friend” by his “heartbroken and devastated” team.
His grieving family is now being supported by the UK Foreign Office.
In a statement, the club said:
“Pontlliw FC is heartbroken and devastated to announce that our player, club man, and dear friend Charlie Batcup has tragically passed away.
“Charlie was a huge part of the club in a way that words cannot describe and his passing has left a huge void in our club which we will never be able to replace.
“A lifelong Pontlliw player with fantastic ability Charlie was a massive asset on the pitch in every team that he played in.
“Off the field, he was the heartbeat of our club community and personified our ethos of camaraderie, inclusivity, and cohesion.
“We are struggling to imagine an away day, social event, or even a Saturday afternoon without Charlie’s presence and he will always be in our thoughts now and forever.
“However difficult it seems to us right now we believe that Charlie would want us to carry on, to continue growing this great club and achieve our future aspirations.
“His input has shaped this club over recent years and we will often ponder in the future: ‘What would Charlie say?’ when faced with a decision to make.
“Thank you, Charlie, you have enriched the lives of all our players and club members. Sleep tight.”
Also taking to social media to share a heartfelt tribute to the late soccer player, was Charlie’s brother, Josh Batcup.
On Facebook, Josh shared a series of photos from when the pair were young boys, to them as adults watching a game of soccer.
He wrote: “I can’t quite believe I’m writing this but my Brother Charlie has tragically passed away.
“You were the heartbeat of Pontlliw Football Club and village.
“There will be an emptiness in many people’s lives now you’re gone.”
He went on to describe his “kind” brother as “simply an amazing person” who was “so well loved by everyone.”
“You are my only brother and the thought of you not being around anymore is unbearable,” Josh added.
“Life as I’ve always known it will never again be the same without you in it and not a day will go by when I won’t think about you.
“I love you so so much Charl, I just wish I could tell you this in person one more time.
“Rest in peace little bro, I will miss you immensely for the rest of my life.”
A Foreign Office spokesman said:
“We are supporting the family of a British man who has died in the Netherlands and are in contact with the local authorities.”
The cause of the rising soccer star’s death has not yet been revealed.