Former Liverpool manager, Gerard Houllier dies aged 73

Gerard Houllier, former Liverpool manager, has died at the age of 73. He managed the Reds from 1998-2004 and won five major trophies, including the FA Cup, League Cup, and UEFA Cup treble in 2000-01.

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Houllier managed French sides Lens, Paris St-Germain, and also the French national team prior to handling Liverpool, and after leaving the Reds, he won two Ligue 1 titles at Lyon.

English side Aston Villa was where he had his last managerial outing, but he left in 2011 after nine months, following heart problems.

Liverpool said in a statement they were “deeply saddened” by Houllier’s death.

“We are mourning the passing of our treble-winning manager, Gerard Houllier,” the club said.

“The thoughts of everyone at Liverpool Football Club are with Gerard’s family and many friends.”

Aston Villa said: “All at Aston Villa are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Gerard Houllier, our manager during the 2010-11 season.

“Our thoughts are with Gerard’s loved ones at this incredibly difficult time.”

In the 1980s, Houllier made a name for himself while managing Lens and PSG before taking over the French national side in 1992.

However, after Les Bleus failed to qualify for the 1994 World Cup finals – with Houllier blaming a mistake from winger David Ginola for their exit – he resigned from the role.

He then moved to England in 1998 and took charge of Liverpool as joint-manager alongside Roy Evans.

Evans tendered his resignation three months later handing the reins of control to Houllier who rebuilt the Reds and led them to the unprecedented treble in the 2000-01 season.

In October 2001, having suffered from chest pains during a home match against Leeds he had an open-heart surgery, but returned to the dugout at Anfield and remained there for another three years before leaving in May 2004.

He joined Lyon after leaving Liverpool and led the French outfit to two French titles before joining the French Football Federation in 2007. Aston Villa dragged him back into management in September 2010 where he signed a three-year deal.

But Houllier was admitted to a hospital the following April with chest pains and Gary McAllister stepped in to help Villa survive relegation trouble.

Following concerns that a return to the dugout could cause further health issues, Houllier stepped down from the role at the end of the 2010-11 season.

He has since held the head of football role at Red Bull, and in November became technical director of women’s football clubs, Lyon and OL Reign.

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