THE family of an Irish Liverpool fan left critically injured after an attack near Anfield stadium on Tuesday say they are "completely devastated".
Relatives of Co. Meath native Sean Cox, 53, described him as an "amazing and wonderful" person and a "truly decent man".
The father-of-three received serious head injures after he was set upon by two Roma fans before Liverpool's Champions League semi-final against the Italian side.
He remains in a critical condition at Walton Neurological Centre.
The heartbreaking statement from Sean's family reads: "Sean is the most amazing and wonderful husband, dad, friend, son, uncle, and brother.
"He has brought us all nothing but joy. He is a truly decent man who adores Liverpool FC and just came over from his home in County Meath, Ireland, to watch his beloved team.
"We are completely devastated by what has happened to our lovely, caring, Sean and all we want is for him to come home to his loving wife and three children.
"We hope Sean makes a full recovery from the injuries he sustained and that we will all be back together soon as a family in Ireland spending precious time together."
Two Italian men were arrested in the stands during Tuesday night's match, which ended with a 5-2 win for Liverpool.
Filippo Lombardi, 20, has been charged with violent disorder and wounding/inflict grievous bodily harm.
Daniele Sciusco, 29, has been charged with violent disorder.
They are currently being held by police and will appear in court today.
Detectives believe Sean was knocked to the ground with a belt outside the Albert pub, close to Anfield stadium, shortly after 7.30pm.
Witnesses believe the Irishman was singled out as he was middle-aged and part of a small group.
Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson and midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have written heartfelt messages to Sean.
Henderson wrote: "The thoughts and prayers of all the players are with the Liverpool fan who is currently very poorly in hospital, after being badly hurt ahead of our game last night.
"He came to watch a football match and support our team – the only result that matters to us now is that he recovers and can return home to be with his family and loved ones."
Oxlade-Chamberlain added: "I’m going to give everything I have to make sure I’m back [from injury] as quickly as possible. However, this all pales in comparison to how the family of the Liverpool fan badly hurt before last nights game must be feeling.
"My thoughts are with him and his loved ones. Thank you for all your kind words, messages and support. I’ll see you soon #YNWA".