BREAKING NEWS: Charlotte FC defender Anton Walkes dies aged 25 after a boating accident in Florida on Thursday morning, as tributes pour in for the former Tottenham and Portsmouth player
- Former Tottenham Hotspur defender Anton Walkes, 25, has died in a boat crash
- Walkes was found involved in a boating accident in South Florida Wednesday
- Click here for all your latest international Sports news from DailyMail.com
Charlotte FC have announced English defender Anton Walkes has died at the age of 25.
Walkes was discovered unconscious following a crash of two boats near Miami Marine Stadium, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Walkes, who has a young daughter called Ayla with his girlfriend Alexis, received CPR from Miami Fire Rescue Wednesday but died early Thursday.
‘We are heartbroken from the loss of Anton Walkes, a truly incredible father, loving person, and outstanding human being,’ Charlotte’s sporting director Zoran Krneta said in a statement.
Charlotte FC’s English defender Anton Walkes died aged 25 following a boat crash in Miami
Walkes, an English defender who started at Tottenham Hotspur, died early Thursday
‘Anton embodied what it means to be a part of Charlotte Football Club and our entire community is grieving over this tragedy.
‘The impact he made in the locker room and throughout Charlotte will never be forgotten. We are thinking of his lovely family during this time and will support them fully in every way imaginable.’
DailyMail.com has reached out to Miami Fire Rescue for comment.
In their own statement, Major League Soccer expressed their pain at the ‘tragic’ news of Walkes’ death early Thursday, following an accident in South Florida.
‘There are no words to describe the sorrow of everyone in Major League Soccer today after learning of the tragic passing of Anton Walkes of Charlotte FC,’ the statement read.
Walkes (left) was born in Lewisham, London, and emerged through Tottenham’s academy
He excelled as a youngster at Tottenham but found first team opportunities hard to come by
‘Anton was a talented and dedicated player who was loved by his teammates and fans. We extend our deepest condolences to his partner, family, friends and the entire Charlotte FC family.
‘MLS is coordinating with Charlotte FC to provide players and family members with the resources and support they may need during this tragic time.’
Less than 24 hours ago Walkes shared a photo of him training on his Instagram story. Charlotte arrived in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, January 9 for a 12-day training camp.
Walkes turned professional in 2016 and began his career being nurtured through Tottenham Hotspur’s academy in England.
From there he had loan spells with Atlanta United and Portsmouth, before going on to have permanent spells at both clubs.
On December 14, 2021, Walkes was picked up by Charlotte as part of the expansion draft.
Last season, Walkes started 21 games for Charlotte.
He made a loan, and later permanent, switch to Atlanta United and impressed in MLS
Charlotte FC owner David Tepper said: ‘Everyone at Tepper Sports & Entertainment is devastated by the tragic passing of Anton Walkes. He was a tremendous son, father, partner and teammate whose joyous approach to life touched everyone he met.
‘Anton made those around him better people in all areas of life and represented Charlotte FC to the highest standard both on and off the pitch.
‘He will be greatly missed by many and our thoughts and prayers are with Anton’s family during this heartbreaking time.
‘The club offers its full support to all those impacted during this period of mourning.’
Charlotte are scheduled to play a pre-season match against St Louis City on Saturday, before their season-opening match against New England Revolution on February 25.
In their own statement, Atlanta United, where Walkes started 64 out of 70 games there across his two spells, said: ‘We are heartbroken to learn of the tragic passing of Anton Walkes.
‘An inaugural member of Atlanta United, Anton was the epitome of a great teammate with a personality that lit up every room he entered.
‘He will be deeply missed by all of those who knew him. On behalf of everyone at Atlanta United, we send our deepest condolences to Anton’s family, friends and Charlotte FC.’
MORE TO FOLLOW.
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