The thoughts and prayers of all at Newtownabbey Borough Council are with the family of Alan McDonald after his untimely passing on Saturday aged 48. Alan was inducted into the Newtownabbey Hall of Fame in April 2011 for services to football. He was a true footballing great and all in attendance during the evening were impressed by his eloquent and humble response to the award. He will long be remembered for his massive contribution to Northern Ireland football and will be sorely missed by all who were fortunate to spend time in his company.
Alan McDonald was born on 12 October 1963 and brought up in Newtownabbey. As a player, he spent most of his career with Queens Park Rangers and was capped by Northern Ireland. Most recently, he was manager of IFA Premiership side Glentoran from June 2007.
He joined QPR in the early 1980s as a youth and spent 17 years with the club. Unable to break into the first-team early on in his career, he got his first league experience while on loan at Charlton Athletic.
Alan went to Swindon Town in 1997, making 36 appearances and scoring once in his last season as player, 1997-98.
On an international stage he played 52 times for Northern Ireland including the 1986 World Cup in Mexico and has been assistant coach of the Under 21 side since 2002.