Shaun Woodburn, 30, passed away yesterday after police were called to reports of a “disturbance” at Great Junction Street in Leith at 2am.
The former Bonnyrigg Rose player had been out with friends celebrating Hogmanay at Gladstones Bar in Leith prior to the incident.
He was taken to hospital in a critical condition but died from his injuries. Two teenage males, aged 16 and 18, were arrested and are set to appear in Edinburgh Sheriff Court today.
Mr Woodburn signed with Bonnyrigg Rose in 2012 and hundreds of people have taken to social media to pay tribute following news of his death.
Paying tribute, he said: “I can’t believe that today we have lost probably one of the nicest guys you could ever meet. Such a horrible world with horrible people ruining other people’s life’s.
“Shaun was a true gentleman loved life and would never hurt a fly.
“Everyone loved Shaun personally I loved the guy to bits had so many amazing memories with him and could look up to him like a brother.
“Shaun had been staying with my family for a couple of days and honestly such an amazing person to have about the house always happy and cheering everyone up.
“Heaven has truly gained another angel.”
His uncle Peter Swanson, 56, has run Gladstone’s for the last 30 years and said he’d known Mr Woodburn for years and that his nephews had played football with him.
He told the News: “He [Shaun] was a lovely laddie. He’s a one in a million guy. The posts that are coming through on Facebook are a tribute to him and his attitude.
“He had everything going for him, it’s just a tragedy. The anger on the street is just unbelievable as well as the sympathy and grief.
“You could put a thousand people in a room and he’d be the last person to cause bother. He’s just that type of guy - not a bad bone in his body.
“Everyone is gutted, it’s just hard to believe.”
Mr Swanson added flowers had already been laid outside the pub, which come in addition to dozens of messages of support.