Blackpool Supporters' Trust pays tribute to Jimmy Armfield
Blackpool Supporters' Trust (BST) have released a statement paying tribute to Jimmy Armfield following his death at the age of 82.
BST secretary Steve Rowland said the news has hit Blackpool fans like a "physical blow".
The Trust are planning a tribute to Armfield prior to Blackpool's game against Charlton Athletic at Bloomfield Road on Saturday, with details due to be announced in due course.
Rowland said: "We all knew the day would come when Blackpool’s greatest ‘fighting back’ would not be able to fight back any longer, but news that Jimmy Armfield has died has hit many of us like a physical blow.
"It’s hard to take the loss of one who did so much not only for Blackpool FC, the only league club he ever played for (on over 600 occasions) and England but for his adopted town of Blackpool and for the greater good of football as manager, columnist, radio pundit and all-round ambassador for the game.
"Those who were fortunate to see Jimmy play for the ‘Pool cannot speak highly enough of his attributes on the field – his speed, vision, tackling ability, distribution skills, all-round fitness and ability to motivate his team mates.
"He was the template for the over-lapping attacking back and although he never won honours in a tangerine jersey, in his penultimate season for the club he helped Blackpool regain their first division status, an achievement of which he was rightly proud.
"Pool fans might choose to gloss over his years in management (first at Bolton Wanderers and then Leeds United) but he enjoyed reasonable success at each club.
"Most of us however know him from his days as a football summariser and pundit on BBC radio, where his distinctive voice, deep knowledge of the game and sense of humour entertained millions of avid listeners. We will miss hearing his words of wisdom.
"Through all of his later career it was his passion for Blackpool FC that shone through and it was fitting that he should have been vice-president of the club.
"For him the performance and progress of the team was paramount and he was regularly at Bloomfield Road offering advice and assistance to whoever was at the helm.
"Jimmy Armfield will be much missed and Blackpool fans and the whole football world should take the opportunity on Saturday to celebrate his life and contribution to the game as well as marking his passing with respect."