He came from an ordinary working family background, the youngest of seven brothers and sisters and a life full of love but not a lot of luxuries, he made it to the top.
He was an outstanding player who was cursed by injuries, he struggled through all of them to overcome his bad luck and still survived in a profession which can by turns be glorious and cruel.
He was blessed with skill, a sweet left foot, lungs like Red Rum and the temperament and nerve of a 'river boat gambler' and now at the ridiculous age of 35 yrs. he is gone.
I've known others before who had great ability and talent only to have it all snatched away from them by cruel fate, Phil. had a good career but he and everyone else around him would gladly give that up to still have him with them, I don't ever remember him being sent off or being picked up off the pavement drunk or being involved in any scandals of any kind, a real pro. 'the first name on the team sheet'.
His loved ones are distraught as is all of football but life will go on and his family will survive, the pain and emptiness they feel now will gradually ease all though they won't believe that at the moment.
A time will come when they will remember with a smile and tell some good stories about a brief but worthwhile life and the happy memories will last for ever. If god's watching I hope he takes care of him and them.