Football: Manchester City great Bell dies aged 74

London (AFP) – Former Manchester City and England midfielder Colin Bell has died aged 74 following a short illness, the club announced on Tuesday.

Bell scored 152 goals in 492 appearances for City during a 13-year career with the club after joining from Bury.

“Colin passed away peacefully this (Tuesday) afternoon after a short, non-Covid related illness, aged 74,” said a club statement.

“He leaves behind wife Marie, children Jon and Dawn and grandchildren, Luke, Mark, Isla and Jack.” Bell was a member of the City side that won the old First Division title in 1967/68 and the FA Cup in 1969.

He also helped City win two trophies in the 1969/70 season – the English League Cup and the European Cup Winners’ Cup.

In addition to his City honours, Bell won 48 England caps and was in the squad for the 1970 World Cup in Mexico during a career cut short by a knee injury.

City said “few players have left such an indelible mark” on the club as Bell, nicknamed “The King of the Kippax” after one of the terraces at their former Maine Road home.

Such was the respect in which Bell was held at the club that City fans voted to name a stand at the Etihad Stadium after him in 2004.

City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak told the club’s website: “Colin Bell will always be remembered as one of Manchester City’s greatest players and the very sad news today of his passing will affect everybody connected to our club.

“I am fortunate to be able to speak regularly to his former manager and team-mates, and it’s clear to me that Colin was a player held in the highest regard by all those who had the privilege of playing alongside him or seeing him play.

“The passage of time does little to erase the memories of his genius.” Meanwhile, his former City team-mate Mike Summerbee paid tribute to “a lovely, humble man”.

“He was quiet, unassuming and I always believe he never knew how good he actually was,” Summerbee told the club’s website.

“He was just the greatest footballer we have ever had.

“Kevin De Bruyne reminds me a lot of Colin in the way he plays and the way he is as a person.” Former England international Summerbee added: “He was adored by the City fans and for our supporters to say he is the best they have ever seen, you don’t get a better compliment than that, do you?”

More on this topic

Source: Read Full Article