Gra­ham Tay­lor dies

The Herald (Zimbabwe) - - Sport -

LON­DON. - For­mer Eng­land soc­cer team man­ager Gra­ham Tay­lor died yes­ter­day at the age of 72 af­ter suf­fer­ing a sus­pected heart at­tack.

Tay­lor made his name as the mas­ter­mind be­hind Wat­ford’s rise to the English top-flight in the 1980s and also en­joyed a suc­cess­ful spell as As­ton Villa boss be­fore spend­ing three years as Eng­land man­ager.

“With the great­est sad­ness, we have to an­nounce that Gra­ham passed away at his home early this morn­ing of a sus­pected heart at­tack,” a state­ment from the Tay­lor fam­ily read.

“The fam­ily are dev­as­tated by this sud­den and to­tally un­ex­pected loss.”

Lead­ing Wat­ford and then As­ton Villa to the run­ners-up spot in the old First Divi­sion es­tab­lished Tay­lor as one of the bright­est man­age­rial minds of his gen­er­a­tion.

Tay­lor ap­peared to have landed his dream job when he took over as Eng­land boss in 1990, but his ill-fated reign ended when he re­signed in 1993 af­ter the team failed to qual­ify for the 1994 World Cup.

That dif­fi­cult pe­riod, which saw Tay­lor harshly lam­pooned by tabloid news­pa­pers, couldn’t de­tract from the re­spect he was held in across the foot­ball world.

The news of his death drew a shocked re­ac­tion as stars paid trib­ute to one of the English game’s most me­morable char­ac­ters.

“Com­pletely shocked by news of Gra­ham Tay­lor. Al­ways held him in the very high­est re­gard - the man who gave me my first eng­land cap. So sad,” for­mer Eng­land cap­tain Alan Shearer tweeted. - AFP

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