WHAT THEY SAID:

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE -

JIMMY ARM­FIELD:

“The likes of Bill Shankly and Tommy Docherty idolised him. He, in my opin­ion, is one of the re­ally great foot­ballers that this coun­try has pro­duced.

“Even go­ing back to his early days, the Ital­ians tried to snatch him away from Eng­land – but he wouldn’t leave Pre­ston. He was a loy­al­ist as well.

“As much as any­thing else, and it’s hard to ex­plain to many people to­day, but it was the way he played and the way he car­ried him­self – his whole de­meanour of life. Re­ally, Pre­ston will be a very sad place.”

TOMMY DOCHERTY:

“He was the best player I’ve ever seen, along­side Lionel Messi.

“I watch a lot of Barcelona and when I watch Messi, I close my eyes and can see Tom. I'm se­ri­ous when I say that Messi is the Tom Fin­ney of to­day.

“Just like Fin­ney, Messi is al­ways get­ting fouled, but doesn’t com­plain and just gets up and gets on with the game.

“If Tom was in­jured and couldn’t play, Pre­ston would de­lay nam­ing the team un­til af­ter 2pm on a Satur­day be­cause the gates would halve if he wasn’t on the teamsheet.

“If Gareth Bale is worth £100m, then Sir Tom would be worth far in ex­cess of that in to­day’s mar­ket. In fact, there is not enough money in foot­ball to buy him.”

PRE­STON CAP­TAIN KEVIN DAVIES:

“We have lost a foot­balling Leg­end. A true gent and a loyal ser­vant to his beloved PNE. RIP Sir Tom Fin­ney.”

GARY LINEKER:

“Sir Tom Fin­ney has left us. One of the great­est play­ers this coun­try has ever seen and a true gen­tle­man.”

FOOT­BALL LEAGUE CHAIR­MAN GREG CLARK:

“He was quite pos­si­bly the finest player to have ever played in the Foot­ball League and was a true gen­tle­man.

“He was also the epit­ome of the one-club man with few people ever hav­ing con­trib­uted as much to a sin­gle team, their city or our com­pe­ti­tion.”

BILL SHANKLY ONCE SAID:

“Tom Fin­ney would have been great in any team, in any match and in any age ... even if he had been wear­ing an over­coat.”

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