Northern Ireland

Crusaders Strikers FC to dedicate match to young goalkeeper who died suddenly

Kaylee Black has been remembered for her 'pure talent and love for football'. Picture from Crusaders Strikers FC/ Facebook
Kaylee Black has been remembered for her 'pure talent and love for football'. Picture from Crusaders Strikers FC/ Facebook

CRUSADERS women's football team are to dedicate their next match to a young goalkeeper who died suddenly.

Kaylee Black, who played for Crusaders Strikers’ under-13s, has been remembered for her "pure talent and love for football".

She died after going missing on Sunday.

In a post on social media on Tuesday, Crusaders Strikers FC said they will dedicate their game against Derry City Ladies on Wednesday to the young girl.

"Our first team are back in action tomorrow night," the club said.

"The match will be dedicated to the memory of Kaylee Black, our players will wear a black armband and we will hold a minutes silence prior to kick off.

"All ticket money will be donated to Kaylee’s family to go towards funeral costs."

Crusaders Strikers had said on Monday that they were “deeply saddened” to hear of her death.

“Kaylee was goalkeeper and valued member of our U13 SBYL (South Belfast Youth League) league winning side, who lifted their trophy last week at our first game at Seaview," the club said.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, friends, teammates, coaches and everyone who loved her during this sad time.”

It comes as a fundraising page has been set up to help Kaylee's family.

Organisers of the gofundme page, which had raised more than £3,000 on Tuesday, said: "The support you have all giving in such a short space of time is nothing short of remarkable, overwhelming and great to see".

"Words cannot explain what the family of Kaylee Black are going through," the page states.

"A talented young footballer who played for Crusaders girls team, has left a massive space in the hearts of her family.

"As you could understand funeral costs are not cheap, also a time where family do not think straight and can not function properly with so much going on.

"We have set this fundraiser up as a help towards the family in their time of need and to help take some of the stress off them at this time.

"Please give what you can. Thank you."

Northern Ireland footballer Simone Magill also paid tribute to the young girl, describing the news as "heartbreaking".

"Thoughts with the family, friends and club at this very sad time," she wrote on Facebook.

Family and friends have also written of their devastation on social media.

One relative wrote: "R.I.P to my beautiful stunning niece Kaylee.

"You were the most loving beautiful intelligent girl with pure talent and love for football my heart's broken you are and were so loved".

Other tributes described her as "beautiful", while others said her death was "heartbreaking".