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Saturday 17 November 2018

Football world mourns passing of Joe Carolan

SAD LOSS: Former Ireland and Manchester United defender Joe Carolan. Photo: Getty
SAD LOSS: Former Ireland and Manchester United defender Joe Carolan. Photo: Getty

Irish football is mourning the loss of former Ireland international and Manchester United player Joe Carolan at the age of 81.

Having learned his trade with Home Farm, he moved to Manchester United in February 1956 - but only after rejecting an offer from Liverpool as he had started an apprenticeship as a cabinet maker and Carolan's father insisted he see out his apprenticeship.

Coming through the ranks at United in the aftermath of the Munich Disaster, he made his league debut in November 1958 as a left back. Having made an impressive 64 league appearances over two seasons (1958-60) he lost his place in the side to Shay Brennan and played his last game for the Old Trafford side in August 1960.

Carolan played twice for Ireland's senior team while a United player, winning his first cap alongside fellow debutant John Giles against Sweden in Dalymount Park in November 1959 and then playing for the second, and final time, against Chile at the same venue in March 1960. In August 1960 he was sold to Brighton for £8,000 and had two years with the Seagulls and played non-league football in England before returning to Ireland.

"We would like to pass on our condolences to the family, friends and team mates of Joe Carolan. Joe left us back in the '50s with dreams of playing for Manchester United and Ireland, which he did in style. Joe will always be remembered by us, a true legend," his schoolboy club Home Farm said.

A Manchester United statement said: "Everyone in the Manchester United family extends their sincerest condolences to all of Joe Carolan's family and friends at this extremely sad and upsetting time."

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