Football clubs in West Dunbartonshire - including junior, youth and women players - are to receive suicide prevention training as part of a “groundbreaking” initiative.

With two people dying every day because of suicide in Scotland, the initiative is part of Scottish Government efforts to cut deaths by 20 per cent by 2022.

Professional football clubs will be among the first organisations to receive suicide prevention training.

The new online resource is being made available to the country’s 42 professional clubs, as well as 300 mental health first aiders, who are employed by 80 footballing organisations.

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The Scottish Government says that with the inclusion of junior clubs, as well as youth sections of the game, women’s football, amateur and para-football leagues, the initiative could reach 190,000 players across the country.

The new resource - which includes online animations that aim to raise awareness of the kind of issues that can result in a person considering suicide - is also being rolled out to councils.

Clare Haughey, mental health minister, said: “We want to create a Scotland where suicide is preventable, and where anyone contemplating suicide or who has lost a loved one gets the support they need.

“I’d like to thank the Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) and the Scottish FA who will be among the first to roll this out to players and staff across all 42 clubs.

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“I’d also like to thank Scotland’s councils for their commitment to take this training to almost 250,000 local authority workers across the country.

“Our approach recognises the need to work together across sectors and organisations to identify and support people in distress, strengthen communities, and save lives.”

Neil Doncaster, SPFL chief executive, said football was “proud” to be part of the initiative.