Holloway hails legend Jimmy

Jimmy Armfield
Jimmy Armfield
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IAN Holloway believes it is “a deserved and fantastic honour” for Jimmy Armfield to present tomorrow’s FA Cup.

The 76-year-old Blackpool FC legend will watch Liverpool and Chelsea do battle from the Royal Box at Wembley before handing the famous trophy to the winning captain.

Holloway says the FA couldn’t have picked a better person for the task than Armfield.

The Seasiders boss said: “One of the best things about becoming Blackpool manager is getting the chance to know Jimmy.

“I had heard him on the radio prior to getting this job and I knew about his history with England, but to actually get the chance to sit down and talk to him, not only about football but about life in general, has been a privilege.

“He deserves to present the FA Cup. There aren’t many people better qualified to do it.

“But what I like most about Jimmy is that he is first and foremost a wonderful human being.

“He and his wife Anne are lovely people and I hope they have a terrific day at Wembley.

“I also hope the players of Liverpool and Chelsea appreciate just what a legend they will be shaking hands with.”

Holloway also took time out from his play-off preparations to pay tribute to a club already promoted to the Premier League – champions Reading. The Seasiders has sent his congratulations to Brian McDermott’s Royals.

Holloway said: “I think the run they’ve been on since the turn of the year is the best I have ever seen in football. They have been sensational.

“The key moment was when the Wolves job became available. Brian said he wanted to stay at Reading, the board gave him a new long-term contract, and since then there has been non-stop positivity.

“They signed Jason Roberts – a great move by the manager – and got momentum. It just snowballed from there.

“I thought they may come unstuck when they had all those tough away games – at Southampton, West Ham and Brighton – but they won them all.

“They have been the best team in the division.”