A non-league footballer has died after being attacked during a night out, police have said.
Jordan Sinnott, who was playing on loan at Matlock Town, was found unconscious in Market Place, Retford, Nottinghamshire, at about 02:00 GMT.
Police have launched a murder investigation after the 25-year-old midfielder was discovered after “two large-scale disturbances” in the town.
He sustained a fractured skull and died in hospital. A man has been arrested.
The 27-year-old remains in police custody and was earlier being questioned on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm.
Det Insp Justine Wilson said: “Mr Sinnott’s death is a sad and significant development in this investigation.
“Our investigative team’s focus will remain on identifying those responsible and bringing them to justice.”
On Saturday, Matlock Town, who play in the Northern Premier League, said players found out about Sinnott’s condition when they arrived for their match against Mickleover Sports and “agreed it should be postponed to a future date”.
The club issued a statement after he died, which said: “His family and friends were with him at his bedside and we send our sincere condolences to them all at this very sad time.”
They tweeted: “You weren’t just a footballer, you were our friend and brother. You gave us incredible memories and scored your first career hat-trick in your final game for the club. Rest easy Jordan, we love, miss and will never forget you.”
Sinnott had joined Matlock on loan from National League North side Alfreton Town, who also issued a statement in which they described the player as a “model footballer and an exceptional talent”.
Others have paid tribute on social media:
Police said officers had attended a “large-scale fight” between eight men and women at the Dominie Cross pub car park in Grove Street at about 23:25 GMT on Friday.
Sinnott was found a couple of hours later following another “large-scale disturbance”, police said.
“Officers were later called to assist ambulance crews who were attempting to treat Sinnott after he was found unconscious with a suspected fractured skull following a subsequent incident,” Nottinghamshire Police said later.
Police said a 27-year old man suffered a suspected broken nose and a 44-year old man was left with a suspected broken jaw.
Det Insp Wilson said: “We are appealing to anyone who was in Retford town centre late last night and in the early hours of this morning to come forward.
“This incident happened at a very busy time and we believe there are still a number of witnesses who have still not yet come forward who may hold vital information about how a young man came to lose his life so tragically.”
Sinnott, from Bradford, is the son of former footballer Lee Sinnott.
He started his career as a youth player at Huddersfield Town, for whom he made five appearances between 2013 and 2014, before joining non-league Altrincham.
After a spell at Halifax, he went on to play again in the Football League, joining League Two Chesterfield for the 2017-18 season.
Earlier this month he scored the first hat-trick of his career during a game against Basford United.