French football coach and former Liverpool manager Gérard Houllier dies at the age of 73

Former France manager Gerard Houllier, who also coached Olympique Lyonnais, Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool, has died, local media reported on Monday.

RMC’s sports and sports daily L’Équipe said he had died at the age of 73 after having heart surgery in Paris.

Houllier had a long history of heart problems and goes back to when he was rushed to hospital during the break of a Premier League game between Liverpool and Leeds United in 2001.

After an insignificant playing career in France’s lower leagues, Houllier began coaching in 1973 and earned his first major job with Lens before taking over at Paris Saint-Germain.

He became France’s assistant coach in 1988 and then head in 1992 but had a short, failed spell and resigned after failing to take the team to the 1994 World Cup in the United States.

France has qualified for every World Cup since then and lifts the trophy in 1998 and 2018.

Houllier focused on youth coaching immediately after the World Cup debacle but rebuilt his reputation in Liverpool, where he won the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup in 2001.

He also had success in France with Lyon, leading them to back-to-back Ligue 1 titles.

He returned to the lead after taking a break in 2010 with Aston Villa but left the role the following year after further heart problems.