One of the few remaining from the ‘Busby Academy’ has died today. John Doherty, a Manchester United forward who helped United win the title in 1955-6, passed away at the age of 78. Despite a knee-injury being the catalyst for his departure to Leicester City in 1957, just prior to the Munich air disaster, he was, according to Sky Sports, “an avid United fan and went on to become a chairman of the Association of Former Manchester United Players.”
Past Manchester United footballer, and dear friend, Paddy Crerand, told SkySports of his memories:
“I am absolutely devastated,” Crerand told the club’s official website. “It’s hard to take. He was a great, great lad and such a big fan of United.”“He was always at the games at Old Trafford and obviously had the history of playing for the club as a Busby Babe.
“One of the great things about him was the work he did for the former players. He was absolutely fantastic with his work for the old boys.”
United chief executive David Gill offered a word of condolence too:
“It was a special moment for him to bring on the Premier League trophy at the end of last season with his friends from the Busby Babes’ first title-winning team in 1956; a role he performed with great pride and dignity”
In times of death, especially among the football community, all should come together. Despite the rivalries between clubs, the Busby Babes surely should be respected as a part of Football History. Doherty’s achievements to assist Football in its growth and preservation should be recognized not only as an achievement for Manchester United Football Club but for the football community as a whole.
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