A former goalkeeper who killed himself had a “difficult time” following the birth of his son who had cerebral palsy, an inquest heard.
Tim Carter, who played two games on loan for Birmingham City in 1991, hoped for a son who would follow in his footsteps as a professional footballer, his brother told the hearing. He hanged himself from a tree near a lay-by a day after he returned alone to the UK from a family holiday in Majorca.
South Manchester deputy coroner Joanne Kearsley was told the week-long break started badly over a row with an airline about seating arrangements for his son on the outbound flight.
It culminated in a “domestic situation” when Mr Carter, aged 40, left his wife, Gina, his son and his daughter behind as he flew back, the inquest heard.
His wife returned the following day on June 18 this year and alerted police when there was no sign of her husband at the family home in Durham.
There was also some concerns about the content of text messages sent to her by Mr Carter shortly before his death, the hearing was told. His body was found in bushes in Stretford, Manchester, on June 19.
A blue nylon rope was discovered hanging from the branch of a tree and Mr Carter’s body was beneath it lying in undergrowth.
It was believed Mr Carter, Sunderland AFC’s youth academy goalkeeping coach, was staying at the Tulip Hotel in Trafford Park, Manchester.
A search of his room took place but no trace of Mr Carter was found and his Renault Laguna was not in the car park.
Officers later combed a stretch of the A57 in Greater Manchester after it was established he had earlier sent a text message along the route.
Acting Chief Insp Tonge said his body was discovered just after midday in bushes close to a lay-by in Highfield Close, Stretford.
He had an obvious neck injury which was consistent with someone having been hung. There were no suspicious circumstances and a post-mortem examination showed he died as a result of asphyxia.
The coroner recorded a verdict that Mr Carter had taken his own life.
He played 50 games for Premier League club Sunderland between 1987 and 1992 before later rejoining them in a coaching capacity.
He was capped three times with England’s youth squad in 1985 and made his Football League debut for his local team Bristol Rovers aged 18.
Mr Carter joined Sunderland on Christmas Eve in 1987 and went on to appear for Newport County, Carlisle United, Bristol City, Birmingham City, Hartlepool United, Millwall, Blackpool and Oxford. He ended his playing days in 1999 at Halifax Town.