Football Obituaries

Discussion in 'General Football & Other Sport' started by zztop, Dec 21, 2019.

  1. zztop

    zztop Eurovision Winner 2015

    Very sad for those that still cling on to England's only World Cup success.

    Has battled alzheimer's apparently.

    Great player and great memories .

    I Blame Bassett likes this.
  2. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    I don’t know who said it but my favourite quote about him was when he was in the autumn of his career at Norwich and he was reckoned then to be “now only nine years ahead of his time”.
    Five of the eleven gone now.
  3. wfc4ever

    wfc4ever First Team Captain

    A player before his time they said.

  4. SkylaRose

    SkylaRose Administrator Staff Member

    Another great joins the footballing angels. R.I.P good sir. Prayers to family and friends. Xxx
  5. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

  6. Teide1

    Teide1 Squad Player

    A very good underrated player, never hear a bad word about him! R.I.P. Sir you were very highly thought off!
  7. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    That's very good!
    Always came over as a gentleman and such a cerebral player.
    One by one the boys of that halcyon moment leave us. Very poignant,as they remain to use an Elton/Taupin lyric "forever always young" in my memory.
  8. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    FA Cup winner Billy Hughes whose brother John was one of the Lisbon Lions has also passed. Scored several times in their famous 1973 FA Cup win and took the corner that led to Ian Porterfields winner. Coatbridge was a hotbed of football (the town of Jock Stein and George Graham) but it shows how far Scotland have fallen because at the time Hughes only ever managed one cap for them. A bustling direct forward a bit like our own Troy. One hundred percent commitment and no little skill.

    Holding the FA Cup with Ian Porterfield after their famous win over dirty Leeds:

  9. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Ron Saunders passed away a couple of weeks ago. A striker good with both feet and his head he scored almost at a ratio of a goal every two games including the peak of his career in the top flight with Portsmouth where after another falling out he left for us. He really made his name as a no nonsense manager taking three team to League Cup finals and like Graham Taylor had the magic touch of taking teams on the slide and bringing them back into the top division as with Aston Villa and Birmingham City. His no nonsense attitude however led to fractious relations with the immovable object of Doug Ellis at Villa Park and led to him resigning months before the side he had created won the European Cup under his assistant Tony Barton.

    Ron played for us in the 1964-65 season where we finished ninth in the third tier no little thanks to Ron bagging a goal every two games. Other players in that squad included Dennis Bond, Terry Mancini and the also sadly passed Duncan Welbourne and Jim McAnearney.

    Peters, Hughes and Saunders all suffered from dementia a horrible slow killer. Dementia is age related but it's onset can vary due to genetic factors. The prevalence is higher among footballers and this generation regularly headed heavy footballs. The concussive effect is hardly conducive to brain health.

    I will say this about Peters and something which is very true in football. There is seldom anything really new in the game that has not been done before and though he was mightily skilled at bursting into the box and ghosting in hence his nickname the Uruguayan Jose Leandro Andrade (a rather tragic life story) was one of the earliest and highly skilled midfielders to do it in the twenties. It was something that caught out European club and national teams completely by surprise given the rigidity of their formations at the time.
  10. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    Very sorry to hear that. The ‘73 Cup Final was a great day for all football fans that hated Leeds, which of course was all fans who weren’t Leeds supporters.
  11. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Chris Barker (1980-2020) passed away.


    A Cardiff City stalwart very much liked there:

    Barker had recently spoken to the Cardiff City website about his time with the Bluebirds, telling the club last December how much the support of the fans meant to him.

    “It was a terrific atmosphere, and great for the home team to have 16-17,000 fans standing up and supporting you throughout. I think we would have started matches 1-0 up just from the crowd having your back.

    “The supporters were fantastic to me throughout my time at the Club. I received player of the year one season, after I’d come back from a loan at Stoke City.

    “I think that was a highlight for me during my time at the Club. To come back from that loan spell at the beginning of the season to then play around 40 matches for City was good enough in itself, but for the paying fans who come out every week and watch to then vote for me at the end of that campaign was an achievement that I am still proud of to this day."

    This time of year can be very difficult for those who have lost loved ones and it seems losing his father recently still weighed heavily on him. As usual puts football into perspective.

    zztop likes this.
  12. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    He was no age at all.
    Very sad.
    Jumbolina likes this.
  13. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Norman Hunter 1943-2020.

    Another player from what was the football hotbed in England the north east. A ferocious uncompromising centrehalf who could if asked play as a defensive midfielder and set up play Norman Bite Yer Legs was one of the pillars of the Leeds team that under Don Revie won numerous titles but also the accolade of Dirty Leeds for their degree of fouling and skullduggery. Nonetheless he was a most capable player and part of the 1966 World Cup squad playing second fiddle to the equally nasty Jack Charlton (with whom he formed a brick wall at Leeds in the centre of their defence) and more cultured Bobby Moore.


    Another sad loss following swiftly in the wake of Peter Bonetti.
  14. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    Although Leeds were the dominant team in the country for a period in the late 60s/early 70s they didn't actually win the number of titles they should have. They won the league twice, just one FA Cup and one League Cup and two Fairs Cups in Europe. However they often just missed out as their list of eleven runner-up places shows: 5 times in the league, 3 times in the FA Cup and 3 more times in Europe, including their last hurrah at the 1975 at the European Cup Final. All that in the space of eleven seasons.
    RIP Norman.
  15. zztop

    zztop Eurovision Winner 2015

    Blimey, very sad.
  16. The Voice of Reason

    The Voice of Reason First Team Captain

    Norman "Bites yer Legs" Hunter RIP
  17. hornetboy1

    hornetboy1 First Team Captain

    Will now be know as Norman "Bites the dust" Hunter.
  18. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Several English clubs were diddled by referees during this period. Leeds and Derby being notable victims in the European Cup. Brian Clough indeed called the officials cheating bastards before storming out of a press conference. Christos Michas was the official for the Leeds game against AC Milan that saw Hunter sent off. Derby had Gemill and McFarland booked against guess who Juventus. That meant both were ruled out of the replay. Juventus obtained an enormous number of free kicks as well in that game making David Coleman suspicious as well.

    Then Leeds against Bayern in 1975. Lorimers goals ruled out for nothing and 2 clear penalties not awarded. The side was being managed by the great Jimmy Armfield. Too much of a gentleman to complain.

    Anderlecht paying the referee Emilio Guruceta to win the second leg of their tie 3-0 after Forest won the first 2-0. Shocking officiating.

    WillisWasTheWorst likes this.
  19. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member


    Silvio Marzolini 1940-2020. Not a name well known in England anymore unless you are a fan of South American football or are a historian of the game. When all time lists are drawn up of national sides Argentina has a very extensive list to draw upon. But one of the very first to be pencilled in for that game in the sky at left back would be Silvio Marzolini.

    Marzolini started out at in senior football at Ferro Carill Oeste a football club and fallen giant of the Argentine game founded by British engineers working on the railway lines that would bring beef and wheat to the port of Buenos Aires. His performance against Boca Juniors aged 19 in the top flight saw him leave for the blue and yellow team where he played for twelve years becoming a club legend and national team regular who played at both the disastrous 1962 campaign in Chile and the 1966 effort where the South American teams felt badly treated on and off the pitch and which ultimately led to Stanley Rous losing his position as head of FIFA to Joao Havelange and the introduction of Ken Astons red and yellow card system.

    In between the Brazilians held a four team tournament in Rio de Janeiro fully expecting to be crowned champions in celebration of their 1962 triumph and what was expected as a formality of another title in 1966 in England. England as the next hosts along with a mighty fine Portuguese team were the European invitees while Argentina were expected to be cannon fodder.

    Argentina had appointed an interim manger in Jose Minella after the national team had seen several managers come and go in Pozzo like fashion after the 1962 debacle. Minella was one of the fabulous players in River Plates La Maquina team that played total football years before the term had appeared in Europe and as a manager of the same club Minella had outstanding success in winning domestic titles.

    Minella looked at his team and ever the pragmatist decided to focus on a counter attacking strategy with one highly skilled central playmaker Ermindo Onega ( who tragically had a rather short life dying in a car crash) and relying on both fullbacks to get forward when they could to provide width and attacking support.

    Portugal had been brushed aside resulting in a match against Brazil in the Maracana that was deemed to be the final of this little World Cup despite both teams still having to play a match afterwards. Ironically the England players were behind Argentina having been pelted by the Brazilian crowd with fruit and other objects when the selecao led by Pele and Gerson dismantled them 5-1. Minella tasked one player Messiano to man mark Pele and employed his counter attacking strategy of defending in depth. It worked. Pele frustrated at not being able to break free elbowed Messiano breaking his nose. Messiano was replaced by Roberto Telch. Onega and Telch with a brace dispatched Brazil and then England to take the title.

    Marzolini along with several other players had been scapegoated for the failure in 1962 despite the complete shambles in preparation, changes in management and selections made on favouritism rather than actual form. He had watched on in 1964 wondering if his young career for the seleccion was over before it had even really started.

    Wind forwards to 1966. Minella despite the success of 1964 was not retained and the managerial role was up for grabs prior to the 1966 tournament. Osvaldo Zubeldia the creator of the offside trap and tactical foul among other things and coach of the hugely successful Estudiantes team of the late sixties had relinquished the role leaving a vacuum that was stepped into by the affable Juan Carlos Lorenzo who had recently led Lazio to a scudetto.

    Marzolini due to his club form with Boca winning national titles as a matter of routine was back to being a fixture with the seleccion. Boca had even offered to bring Bobby Charlton to Buenos Aires with the Argentina economy still buoyant under the rule of the Peoples Radical party led by Arturo Illia. A far cry from the current climate where the power lies completely with the so called big European teams.

    As a player Marzolini was two footed, agile and possessed of a great body balance allowing him to get forward and past defenders to attack the box or deliver sweet left footed crosses. Tenacious as a defender his reading of the game allowed him to be in the right place at the right time. He had that quality that marks all great players, a languid ease on the ball and being able to slow the game to his pace. Beloved by many women for his good looks he graced many a El Grafico cover and there was great excitement in the press when the team arrived in England hailed by the local press as one of the favourites.

    Argentina based themselves in Birmingham in far from salubrious conditions and their training compared to today was rather haphazard to say the least involving at one point an escape to Lilleshall without training kit and footballs to avoid it was supposed by Lorenzo the eyes of Spanish and German spies. Marzolini recalled team morale as being very high with Valentin Suarez head of the AFA delegation making all the right noises with the hosts visiting a local childrens hospital and the coach in confident spirits mirrored by the captain Antonio Rattin, El Caudillo his Boca team mate.

    That all changed pretty soon after a 2-1 win over Spain the European champions where the myth of those vicious Argentines sprang up after Luis Suarez had to leave the field with a pre-existing knee injury. Mistakenly press reviewers thought he had been forced off by a mild innocuous challenge that was inflated in the telling to some mortal body blow. Matters were not helped in the next game against West Germany a physical 0-0 draw. Rafael Albrecht was sent off for a foul but the Germans escaped punishment. Billy Wright and Danny Blanchflower watching on were amazed that for a similar foul Wolfgang Overath escaped without any censure at all. The Argentina officials were spoken to but the West German delegation had no such warning. The Brazilians for once in agreement with the Argentines complained about how Bulgaria and Hungary had been allowed to hack their players continually without any fear of punishment. Most notably Pele. It led to Pele threatening never to play again at a World Cup declaring that conditions had been fixed. Needless to say Bulgaria and Hungary never received any warnings as with the Germans. Rous had also received criticism for having forced the African teams to playoff against the winners in Asia and Oceania to compete such that they withdrew and boycotted the 1966 World Cup. Rous who has thankfully had his name removed from Vicarage Road was also a keen supporter of South Africa and regularly fought to keep it within FIFA despite the apartheid system in place.

    Alberto had reverted to the system that Minella had employed meaning Marzolini was still very much focused on a defensive role but his performances led him being awarded best player of the group stages cup and ultimately best left back of the tournament. Ahead of players like the great Il Magno Fachetti and Nilton Santos of Brazil. Then came the match that soured the previous warm relationship between the two national sides.

    The first bone of contention was Rous. His handling of the referee selection left the Uruguayans and Argentines angry. The selections were made at a Kensington hotel but by the time officials from both nations arrived at the scheduled time they were told the decisions had already been made. A German referee for England against Argentina. An English referee for Germany against Uruguay.

    Even before the matches the national press in both countries were focused on their worry about who would be chosen and why a neutral confederation official could not be chosen. The situation was not helped by the Argentine officials who had told Rattin before the match he could ask the referee for an intepreter over decisions something that had been stopped in the fifties. Valentin Suarez of the AFA had according to Marzolini warned the players not to get involved in any arguments with the referee no matter what but left the idea of the intepreter stuck in the giant Rattin's mind.

    While no angels as Marzolini admitted regarding hair pulling, the quick whack on the back of the leg or elbow while the referee was not looking that was football in those days. Indeed Marzolini planted a kick into George Cohen early on. The turning point was the sending off Rattin by what was deemed the little dictator Rudolf Kreitlein. Footage of the incident shows no foul at all. Rattin was speaking Spanish. The referee German. Rattin had been irritated by the number of free kicks already awarded to England while similar fouls from the English players escaped any action including the deliberate catching of a long ball forward by Bobby Moore. Without warning Kreitlein pointed to the dressing room even though as he admitted later he did not even understand what Rattin was saying.
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2020
  20. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member


    That turned the game although Argentina held out with comfort until Hurst popped up with a header with Roberto Perfumo dragged out wide from central defence to cover Ferreiro who had gone forward for the first time in the match from right back. Despite almost equalizing with ten men after a Marzolini cross was narrowly put wide the game was remembered for the brawl at the end mainly involving some of the Argentine team trying to get at Kreitlein. It was not helped by Ramsay describing the Argentinian team as animals something which several players like Cohen disagreed with. Marzolini did manage to exchange shirts with Bobby Charlton before disappearing down the tunnel to a bemused, angry and frustrated dressing room. Eusebio watching on was left bemused noting that the referee clamped down on any indiscretion by the Argentines while ignoring those from English players.

    In the other match two Uruguayans were sent off from a side almost entirely composed of Penarols world club champions. The English referee again seemed to ignore German tackles leading to intense frustration while one German player Schnellinger performed a save on the goal line to stop a goal bound effort. Not only was there no penalty at 0-0, Schnellinger received no sanction at all.

    After the tournament CONMEBOL were so incensed and that included confederations not present like Chile they pushed for change at FIFA while some press overseas as in Italy described the whole affair as Quel brutto pasticcio dei Mondiali, a mess of a World Cup.

    Suffice to say relations between the two teams and countries went southwards at a rate of knots. As for Silvio he regarded the matter with equanimity blaming some of the Argentina officials for planting silly ideas into Rattin's mind notably about the use of an intepreter. Despite offers from Europe post World Cup about the silky left back Marzolini remained with Boca until his retirement and never again played at a World Cup as the national team hit a barren patch failing to qualify for Mexico. His participation in a player strike in 1971 when chairmen still held all the power led to him being blacklisted as a player. Having been refused a move to France where several clubs had offered him a large sum of francs to sign and finding the move blocked he retired, bitterly regretting his decision not to go in the wake of 1966 to Real Madrid . Or his decision to refuse Internazionale in 1963. Recognized globally as the consummate player he was he played in the Rest of the World team in 1968 that took on Brazil in Rio.

    Moving into coaching in the youth divisions at All Boys in BA (current chairman being none other than the brother of Filbert's favourite player Esteban Cambiasso), giving frequent comments in the media and commentating formed his life subsequently. He led Boca to another title as overall manager in 1981 with a young Diego Maradone at the forefront before returning as a coach at several clubs. Most notably at one of the smaller BA clubs Banfield. Here he was youth coach to a certain Nicolas Tagliafico who shares some of his qualities as a leader, balance off both feet and sheer tenacity and when allowed a love for getting forward.

    An idol at Boca he is one of the finest left backs to have ever graced the field but like many of his generation never received much reward for it.
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2020
    luke_golden likes this.
  21. The Voice of Reason

    The Voice of Reason First Team Captain

    And breathe phew!!!
  22. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

  23. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    Very very sad.
    MND has a very high rate amongst active males, especially in sport and particularly contact sport as you say.
  24. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Alejandro Sabella 1954-2020. Most will remember the balding affable man who led Argentina to the World Cup final in 2014 as manager.

    Born into a wealthy family like most portenos he ended up in the youth divisions of River Plate learning his craft from fine coaches and Norberto Alonso. He also earned the familiar nickname Pachorra when he debuted for the Millionaires playing as the ten due to his slow pace as compared to Alonso. When a homesick Alonso returned from Marseille to replace his apprentice once again Sabella decided to look elsewhere to develop his career.

    In the wake of the 1978 World Cup English clubs took an interest in signing Argentine players. Ardiles and Villa ended up at White Hart Lane, the mercurial Tarantini at Birmingham City while Sabella ended up at second tier Sheffield United. All became cult heroes. Sabella for his deft skills and willingness to blend in. That has seen an outpouring of sadness and sympathy for their former player. The manager at the time Harry Haslam rejected Diego Maradona as a first choice before settling on Sabella. The mud pitches did not affect him at all considering these were quite normal in Argentina as well. After the Blades were relegated to the old Division Three he left for a season at Leeds before returning to Argentina.

    His ethics (he supported the redistribution of wealth in Argentina), professionalism, kindness, sharp mind and general demeanour endeared him to players, coaches and journalists. He was assistant to Passarella in 1998 when Argentina missed several chances to beat Holland in the quarter final before taking over Argentina as manager in 2011. Argentina were a mess on and off the pitch while Sabella had led Estudiantes to another Libertadores. It shows the character of the man that he turned down a lucrative contract in the Gulf to answer the national call. He fashioned a team that scored plenty with the so called fantastic four Messi, Aguero, Higuain and di Maria and a rock solid defence.

    Unfortunately for Sabella di Maria went out of the tournament early on against Belgium and neither Aguero or Messi were by their own admission fully fit. Despite that there three great chances to seal a win in the final all wasted. He shares many of the same characteristics as Graham Taylor hence the feeling of loss wherever he played and managed. A true gentleman of the game whose last few years since 2014 were plagued by poor health.

    As a young man of twenty starting out in his senior career at River Plate and the man who came so close:

  25. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    Paolo Rossi.
    Hero of '82. Golden boot and golden ball winner and scored in the final.
    No age at all.
    RIP Paolo.
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  26. hornetboy1

    hornetboy1 First Team Captain

    The heaven XI will have made quite a few decent signings this year:- Clemence, Maradona, Charlton, Rossi, Hunter and Stiles.
    iamofwfc likes this.
  27. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

  28. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Rossi, Tardelli , Altobelli went the chant.....

    Last edited: Jan 1, 2021
    I Blame Bassett likes this.
  29. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    I had forgotten Italy missed a penalty in that Final.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2021
  30. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    One of many French coaches and administrators with vision. Chatrier,Rimet,Hagaleur and Wenger amongst others.
    Very pleasant man although he always reminded me of a Gallic Hancock,minus Sid,Bill,Miss Pugh etc.
  31. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Maxim Tsigalko 1983-2020.

    As a young player in the Belarus Maxim tore it up and was deemed to be the next big thing in football from there. He progressed within Dinamo Minsk and won the cup and league with the side but his development was blighted with injuries which led to an eventual retirement in 2010 and given pay was meagre working as a manual labourer. Something which given his medical history was not ideal. The irony is that he remains a legend in Championship Manager 2002 based on scout reports of the time emerging as a go to cheap option as a striker with a world class ceiling. Gone far too soon.
    luke_golden likes this.
  32. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    Crikey 37.
    Poor chap.
  33. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Tommy Docherty 1928-2020. The Doc.

    One of footballs great raconteurs, opinonated a more than decent full back and a manager with ideas before his time. Had it not been an affair of the heart fans on the red side of Salford might be celebrating another Scot long before Alex Ferguson. He loved to play attacking football rather than play in a conservative fashion. It comes hot on the heels of the passing of another volatile character Jim McLean Dundee United legend who took on the Old Firm and beat them. Winning the league title in 1983 meant a run in the European Cup where the Tangerines were beaten by AS Roma. It later turned out the Roma chairman tried to bribe the referee Michel Vautrot with a huge sum of money for the time. Roma were trailing 2-0 after the first leg at Tannadice. The Roma players were also physically and verbally abusive throughout that match.



    CYHSYF likes this.
  34. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett First Team

    Tommy Doc and the excellent line " Managing is about keeping the six players who hate you away from the five who are unsure".
  35. Happy bunny

    Happy bunny Cheered up a bit

    The Doc wasn't a full back, he was a wing-half (misleading term for what is a ball-winning central midfielder these days).
    Smudger likes this.

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