Former Liverpool and France manager Gérard Houllier passes away at 73

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Padraig Whelan

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Veteran French coach Gérard Houllier has sadly passed away at the age of 73, it has been confirmed.

He died after returning home on Sunday, having undergoing another heart operation at a Parisian hospital three weeks ago.

Heart problems had plagued Houllier’s health over the last two decades and ultimately led to his retirement in 2011.

Following a 12-year playing career, it was in the dugout that Houllier truly shone, quickly earning prominent roles at Lens, Paris Saint-Germain and assistant for France in the 1980s.

He became Les Bleus’ number one in 1992 but resigned in November the following year after their failure to qualify for the World Cup in 1994.

After coaching spells at underage level with the national side, he moved to Liverpool in 1998 as joint-manager along with Roy Evans.

Evans’ departure just a few months later saw Houllier take over as sole manager until leaving in 2004.

During his time at Anfield, he won a memorable treble in 2001, in addition to the Charity Shield, Uefa Super Cup and then League Cup for a second time in 2003.

Houllier returned home and won two league titles with Lyon in 2006 and 2007 before concluding his career by leading Aston Villa to a ninth placed finish in 2009.

In the past decade, he had worked in an advisory role to the Red Bull clubs as well as at Lyon.