Football fan who lost leg after attack by hooligans left with ‘life sentence’

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A Scottish football fan who lost his leg and almost died when he was attacked by hooligans after an Old Firm match says his life has now been ruined.

Glaswegian Pro golf caddy Francis McCann, 50, said he’s the one left with a life sentence after being stabbed in the neck by Kyle Beard, 27, during a brawl following a game between Glasgow's Celtic and Rangers – two teams with fierce rivalry – in 2019.

Meanwhile, Beard was sentenced to just five years in prison last week.

Celtic fan Francis, who now wears a prosthetic limb, told the Daily Record: “He was charged with attempted ­murder but he is lucky it wasn’t murder.

“It’s only thanks to paramedics and nursing staff I’m still alive. He will be out in no time whereas I’ve been left with the life sentence.

“I don’t know what the rest of my life holds for me. I can only live from one day to the next and can’t plan for the future.

“I don’t even know if I have a future. My entire life has ground to a halt.”

Francis, of Drumchapel, Glasgow, had gone to meet friends in the city centre and watch the Celtic v Rangers game on TV.

He left the bar at 4.30pm to get a bus home, turned a corner into Albion Street and said he walked into a mass brawl.

CCTV showed ­Francis was attacked by Beard and stamped on and kicked by a group of other men.

Francis has little recollection of the attack until he was found bleeding to death in the street.

A picture showed paramedics trying to stem the flow of blood from his neck as they treated him at the scene.

Dad-of-two Francis said: “I remember seeing a group of young men fighting and then found myself caught up in it.

“I felt a sharp pain in my neck then ­nothing. I was dead at one stage for 15 ­minutes but can also remember the paramedics trying to save me.”

He was rushed to Glasgow Royal Infirmary where doctors fought to keep him alive for a second time after he lost five litres of blood and had a cardiac arrest.

Surgeons worked on Francis until 2.30am the next day. He had to have his left leg amputated five days after the attack as a result of complications from his treatment.

After three-and-half weeks he was moved to Queen Elizabeth University Hospital where he had to have surgery on his amputated limb after it became infected.

Though he now has a prosthetic limb the loss of his leg has left Francis a prisoner in his own home. He said: “I’m now a very vulnerable person which I wasn’t before.

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“Though I survived the attack the whole experience has ruined my life.”

Beard pled guilty to attempting to murder Francis two days into his trial at the High Court in Glasgow. Not guilty pleas to assaulting three other men that day were accepted by prosecutor Bill McVicar.

Eight others had also been accused of attempting to murder Francis.

James Quinn, 23, William Barclay, 30, and Jack Docherty, 30, were given community payback orders and tagged after pleading guilty to lesser assaults on Francis. Jamie Kinnaird, 27, and James Gemmell, 25, were jailed for 10 and nine months respectively for their attacks.

  • Crime

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