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Shay weeps for tragic friend Gary Speed

SHAY GIVEN'S face was etched with grief as he paid tribute to his friend and former team-mate Gary Speed, who has died at the age of 42.

Given and Speed were together at Newcastle United for six seasons, from 1998-2004, and the pair remained close friends after Speed's departure to Bolton Wanderers.

And Given's pain of losing Speed at such a young age was evident in yesterday's Premier League game between Aston Villa and Swansea

"Shay told me the news 10 minutes before I was due to talk and my blood ran cold," said Villa manager Alex McLeish.

"My players were very upset pre-match. I was worried about Shay. The minute's silence turned into applause and I was worried about losing him."

His Villa team-mate James Collins said: "Shay was obviously devastated, same as everyone. Shay was very close with him and you could see that in the minute's silence.

"He was so emotional that you didn't know if he was going to play the game. That just says it all, how seriously affected everyone's lives are. We're all just devastated and our thoughts are with his family."