A murder inquiry has been launched into the death of a man who was found with head injuries in Swinford, Co Mayo last Saturday.

Joseph Deacy, 21, of St Albans in England, was found outside a house at Gortnasillagh. The alarm was raised by a passer-by at about 6am.

Gardaí and Emergency Services attended the scene.

He was taken by ambulance to Mayo University Hospital and later removed to Beaumont Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on Sunday evening.

State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy conducted a post-mortem examination.

A forensic examination of the scene has been carried out and an incident room has been established at Claremorris Garda Station.

It is understood Mr Deacy was on holidays from Britain visiting a friend. Members of his family have travelled to Mayo. 

Gardaí have appealed to anyone with information to contact Claremorris Garda Station on 094-9372080 or the Garda Confidential Line 1800-666-111.

St Colmcilles GAC in Hertfordshire, where Mr Deacy was a member, has paid tribute to the 21-year-old.

In a statement, the club said: "At 21 years of age, Joe had a bright future ahead of him. He had an amazing energy and a real lust for life. He was a great friend and people were drawn to his character, his humour and outlook on life."

The statement added: "It is difficult to say goodbye to anyone at any age but when it happens to someone so young it is especially difficult.

"He will be sorely missed by us all. Our thoughts and prayers are with Joe's family and friends at this time.

"You will always be remembered by all of us here at the club, your friends and teammates."