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Gary Speed’s death for a non football fan

ALAS, I had no idea of Gary Speed’s existence until he ceased to be. How tragic to have reached the end of his life and not be known by me. Can there be sadder fates?

My first assumption on learning of the death of someone whose life was a matter of oblivion to me was: Ah, a satsuma moment. You know, man throttles himself for testicular release with the aid of fruit segment. Anoxia I think it’s called. It’s one of the tabloid faves and usually features a promising politician, RIP.

But no fruit segment was found by Gary’s side. Nor signs of testicular release. People said he was the happiest man that ever lived – he discussed footie morning, noon and night. Why would anyone want to kill themselves in such circs? I couldn’t help thinking: What a blessed release for the poor man.

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Posted: 31st, January 2012 | In: Key Posts, Sports | Comments (35)

Gary Speed: inquest leaves questions unanswered

GARY Speed is dead. And the tabloids pile in on Louise Speed, the widow and mother to his two young sons.

The inquest into the death of the man who played football for Leeds, Newcastle, Everton, Bolton and Sheffield United found that he died by hanging. Why did he place a noose about his neck? We don’t know. The therapy industries spoke long and loud about how Speed was a depressive, making him the leader of a Suicide FC. The PFA issued a glamorous pamphlet reminding young footballers of famous faces who had suffered from mental illness. This was death by football. The private man would be defined by his job held in the public eye even after his death.

It’s unlikely we ever will know why Gary Speed died. We don’t even know if he killed himself – the coroner ruled an open narrative verdict, meaning Gary Speed could have died in an accident. Coronoer Rheinberg says it may have been a “dramatic gesture” gone wrong. The coroner stuck to the facts.

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Posted: 31st, January 2012 | In: Key Posts, Sports | Comments (3)

Gary Speed is dead – time to ruin Louise Speed’s life

GARY Speed’s widow Louise Speed has given evidence at the inquest into the death of the Wales manager.

Key points are:

* The coroner says he may have killed himself by accident
* The word depression is not mentioned once by the coroner
* Louise Speed says they had argued the night before she found his body – she had spent the night in the car
* Louise Speed says her husband texted her an idea that he might kill himself – but he swiftly discounted it and vowed to do best with the couple’s two sons

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Posted: 30th, January 2012 | In: Key Posts, Sports | Comment

Gary Speed’s accidental death – coroner sticks to the facts

SO. Why did Gary speed kill himself? Was it wilful? Was it an accident that he died? We don’t know.

The Leveson Inquiry into media standards and phone hacking debates caused the story of Gary Speed to be glossed over by the tabloids. The talk was of depression – although we heard no record of Speed being a sufferer. The therapy industries milked the death of the Wales manager, the PFA produced a glamorous booklet, and current and former players orchestrated their grief on twitter and in newspaper columns. The Daily Star wondered how many more footballers would die – turning the game into a death cult.

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Posted: 30th, January 2012 | In: Sports | Comments (2)

Gary Speed: smears, lies and Fleet Street’s desperation

WHEN Gary Speed died the tabloid press reported the facts and little more. There was some emoting and grandstanding grief on twitter and the therapy industry cop-opted the dead man for their own purposes. The PFA glamorised his death as being something unique to football. But the tabloids were relatively retrained. Why? Answer: the Leveson Inquiry into media standards.

It is believed Gary Speed took his own life. He was 42. He left behind a wife and two children. And that is where the facts end.

The Times editorial is worried, saying that we know “possibly a great deal less than there is to know”.

Do we have a right to know why Gary Speed committed suicide, as it appears? No. Can you sense in that Times line the side-ways eye of a cynic tapping his nose?

In the past, tabloids would have hunted this story down. Doing this now, however, might not seem wise. The press is, after all, under investigation. And, because some newspapers have failed to make the public interest case for their stories, they have lost confidence in their ability to do so. Many newsrooms are also, rightly, questioning their methods. As a result, this story is being left alone.

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Posted: 24th, December 2011 | In: Sports | Comments (4)

Gary Speed Never Did Play Cricket But Luke Sutton Did

WE’VE no idea why Gary Speed committed suicide but the Liverpool Daily Post manages to conjure up the news story:

FORMER Lancashire wicketkeeper Luke Sutton has become the first high profile sports star to publicly admit to seeking treatment for depression and anxiety since the death of Gary Speed.

Sutton, who played for Somerset, Lancashire and Derbyshire, is quoted:

“I have been aware for some time that I have problems with certain aspects of my mental health.”

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Posted: 8th, December 2011 | In: Sports | Comments (9)

Are The Tabloids And PFA Glamourising Gary Speed’s Suicide?

CAN the Sun turn Gary Speed’s death into a campaign?

Well, it can try to.

The headline runs:

Gary Speed suicide: 
Aces confess own troubles – 50,000 footie stars get depression guide

No, not a guide to getting depressed. You can’t catch it. But “footie stars” – 50,000 of them! – are being taught about depression. Get a lod of those “aces” who suffer from the illness.

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Posted: 2nd, December 2011 | In: Key Posts, Sports | Comment

Newcastle United Boss Takes Moral High Ground By Standing On Gary Speed’s Coffin: Joey Barton Tweets

HOW much worse can the PR get at Newcastle United? Derek Llambias has a go at making the club look bad.

Joey Barton has made a dickish comment about his former club:

“Myself, Kevin Nolan, Alan Smith, Steve Harper and Andy Carroll – probably the bigger-name players at the time – advised the playing staff not to sign the bonus sheet and that filtered back to boardroom level. It’s no coincidence that I got sold – well, given away – Andy Carroll was sold, Kevin Nolan was sold, Steve Harper – a fantastic servant for the football club – has been forced to go on loan and maybe his position has become untenable.”

That would be Andy Carroll, a players sold for a well over the odds £35m, ageing Nolan and a reserve ‘keeper? Barton then goes on twitter to say of Newcastle’s managing director Derek Llambias:

“If he’s worried now, him and his fat mate should be ******** it, if I decide to write a book. There’ll be no holding back on those 2 muppets.”

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Posted: 1st, December 2011 | In: Sports | Comments (3)

Therapy Industry Is Using Gary Speed’s Death To Advertise Its Services

MORE Gary Speed opportunism in the Scotsman, where Nicola Peckett, head of communications at the Samaritans, uses the Wales manager’s death to promote her own cause…

Nicola Peckett: Gary Speed in group most at risk from suicide

But we do not know what Gary Speed died. How can he represent an entire demographic?

The group most likely to take their life through suicide is men in their 30s, 40s and 50s. That is quite different to what most people think, as they tend to believe younger men are more at risk. Three out of four people who die by suicide in the UK are men, and those from poorer backgrounds have the highest risk. But suicide can also affect people from more affluent backgrounds, who appear to be successful in their work and home lives.

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Posted: 30th, November 2011 | In: Key Posts, Sports | Comments (6)

Exploiting Gary Speed’s Death: How Many Footballers Will Die?

WE do not know why former Leeds United footballer and Wales manager Gary Speed died. The coroner has yet to rule that it was suicide. Yet the Daily Star manages to produce a front-page headline that warns:


On brink of what?

Jerry Lawton has news:

TEN top footballers have begged for help fighting depression following Gary Speed’s shock suicide.

First up: we do not know that Gary Speed suffered from depression. Unless a medic who was prescribing him treatment steps forward, or Speed’s wife choses to say something, we never will. We don’t need to know. We are nosy and curious. But knowing is none of our business. Secondly, Lawton’s opening line makes it sound as if the root of the ten footballer’s depression is Gary Speed’s suicide.

The desperate stars contacted Tony Adams’ Sporting Chance Clinic after the Wales manager was found dead at his £2million mansion.

Gary Speed drove them to it? 

The players, who have not been named, complained they had been secretly struggling to cope with the pressures and stress of the game at the highest level.

So. Speed’s death did not make them suicidally depressed. Is it that their work, in this case football, making the 10 grown men suicidally depressed? But how do we know there are “ten top footballers” battling mental illness? How do we know they have “begged” for help.

Last night the Professional Footballers’ Association revealed the 10 could be just the tip of the iceberg. They fear that many more are too scared to come forward in case their problems are exposed to team-mates, rivals and fans.

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Posted: 30th, November 2011 | In: Sports | Comments (4)

Gary Speed: Feeding Speculation And Waiting For The Secrets We Have No Right To Hear

GARY Speed’s death is occupying minds at the Sun. The paper’s front-page headline says of the man who represented Leeds United, Newcastle United, Everton, Sheffield United And Bolton Wanderers:

“Gary didn’t argue with wife, he wasn’t depressed”.

We do not know why Gary Speed died. The manager of the Welsh football team was found hanged in the garage at his home near Chester. An inquest will be opened at the coroner’s court at Warrington Town Hall on Tuesday.

We may never know why he died. But do we need to know? Do we deserve to know?

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Posted: 29th, November 2011 | In: Key Posts, Sports | Comments (6)

Gary Speed RIP: Wales Manger Dies At 42 (A Life In Photos)

OVER the internet comes news that Gary Speed, the manager of Wales, has died at age 42. He will forever be remembered for his role in that season when Leeds United won the Premier League…


Picture 1 of 20

Chris Fairclough, Jon Newsome and Gary Speed celebrate Jon Newsome's goal


Posted: 27th, November 2011 | In: Sports | Comment