Three tragedies rock English football

The helicopter belonging to the owner of Leicester City crashed shortly after take-off outside the club's ground. (Photo: Hugh Trainer, Flickr)

Leicester City Football Club owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is believed to be among up to five people killed in a helicopter crash, and ex-England star Glenn Hoddle is in serious condition after a series of tragic incidents linked to the Premier League overnight.

      • A helicopter believed to be carrying the Leicester City chairman crashed outside King Power Stadium shortly after its traditional takeoff from the ground.
      • An elderly fan collapsed shortly before kickoff at Brighton-Wolves, and was pronounced dead at Royal Sussex County Hospital.
      • BT Sport pundit Hoddle collapsed at TV studios after his Saturday afternoon broadcast, and was described as “seriously ill”.

Srivaddhanaprabha, a 60-year-old Thai billionaire who purchased the Foxes in 2010, also owned King Power Duty-Free, providing naming rights for the stadium which became the scene of the disaster.

He became a household name and a celebrated figure within the Leicester region after their stunning and historic Premier League triumph in the 2015-16 season under his tenure.

His son Aiyawatt, who was appointed vice-chairman, was not on board at the time of the crash, nor was Leicester City Director of Football Joe Rudkin.

The BBC reported that Leicester manager Claude Puel may have been on board at the time of the accident, but there has been no confirmation.

The helicopter took off from the centre of the pitch about 30 minutes after the end of a 1-1 draw with Bournemouth.

Elsewhere, Brighton & Hove Albion were mourning the death of an elderly fan who collapsed at the American Express Stadium before the start of their 1-0 win over Wolverhampton.

The man was attending with his son and reportedly fell ill, receiving treatment shortly after from Brighton club medical staff.

He was eventually pronounced dead after being taken to Royal Sussex County Hospital.

Additionally, BT Sport pundit and former England player and manager Glenn Hoddle was hospitalised after suffering a reported heart attack shortly after an appearance on the Saturday morning TV broadcast.

Hoddle, capped 53 times by England and a past winner of the FA Cup and what is now the Europa League with Tottenham, was confirmed by fellow BT personality Jake Humphrey as having “taken seriously ill” at the BT Studio this morning.

The man considered a catalyst for Chelsea’s renewed success in the 21st century was on his 61st birthday, and was quickly flooded with messages of support from the clubs he was once involved with.