Tributes pour in for popular Arran footballer

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Tributes have been pouring in for Tony McDowall who tragically passed away while on holiday in Istanbul, Turkey.

The sad news that 28-year-old Tony fell to his death from a hotel balcony while on holiday with his friends has had a profound impact on all those that knew him and especially his teammates who played football with him.

Tony was heavily involved in football on the island. Playing since school age to then represent Brodick in the Arran Dairies League, he helped to win countless trophies for the team. Tony was voted player’s player of the year by his opponents in 2015 when he was the man pulling the strings in the middle of the park, leading Brodick to another league title.

He then moved away and linked up with Southside United AFC in Glasgow where he made a big impact and was held in high regard by the men at the club, fitting in seamlessly on and off the field.

Once the new Arran Amateur Football Club was founded Tony was enthusiastic about going to play for his native Arran team to join up with many of his old school mates. Unfortunately a serious injury held him back but at the start of 2020 he signed with the team and contributed to their success.

A spokesperson from Arran Amateur Football Club said: ‘The club and the Arran community are devastated to learn of the tragic and untimely passing of Tony, a great footballer, athlete and an even better person.

Southside United AFC echoed the sentiments shared by their contemporaries on Arran, saying: ‘We are devastated to hear the news of the passing of Tony McDowall whilst on holiday.

‘Tony played a huge role when we gained promotion to the premier division. Tony was a great player and more importantly a great guy. Our thoughts are with his family and friends. RIP Tony.’

Friend and teammate at Arran Amateur Football Club, Archie McNicol, created a JustGiving page in honour of Tony McDowall with the intention of raising £1,000 to purchase a headstone. Within 15 hours of launching, the crowdfunding initiative surpassed its target by 892 per cent with £8,920 being raised by 251 supporters.

Archie McNicol said: ‘Last week we lost Tony McDowall to a tragic accident whilst on holiday. Since then his family and friends have all been overwhelmed with the many messages they have received, from so many, offering their condolences and support during this incredibly difficult time.

‘Tony was always the first to offer his support during hard times for others and this is something that has shone through within the many stories that people have shared with his family and friends. This is an opportunity to repay the love and support that Tony shared with others and to pay tribute to Tony’s memory and the many great times and nights out we all shared.’

The fundraiser can be found by searching for Tony McDowall on the JustGiving page at

Tony, second from the right, pictured with his friends and teammates from Arran.

Tony McDowall was a well-known and much loved character on Arran. No_B39tributes01

Tony, second from the right, pictured with his friends and teammates from Arran. No_B39tributes02