Tributes paid to Celtic legend Billy McNeill
Tributes have been pouring in for former Celtic captain Billy McNeill, who has died at the age of 79.
McNeil, who also managed the club during two separate spells, was confirmed by the club to have died on Monday night.
McNeil captained The Bhoys to their 1967 European Cup triumph, beating Inter Milan 2-1 in the final to become the first Briton ever to lift the trophy.
He also led the Glasgow side to nine successive league titles, as well as a total of 13 domestic cups.
Several players and clubs have posted tributes to the Scot on social media, hours after his former club Celtic had confirmed his death in a statement which said that he “had died surrounded by his family and loved ones.”
Family’s immense sadness as #CelticFC legend Billy McNeill passes away.
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) April 23, 2019
Old Firm rivals Rangers also posted a tribute to McNeill on their official Twitter feed.
The Directors, players and staff of Rangers Football Club are today saddened to learn of the death of Celtic legend Billy McNeill.
— Rangers Football Club (@RangersFC) April 23, 2019
Several players and former players also sent their condolences to the family of the former Scottish international including Chris Sutton, who said his thoughts were with the family of an ‘inspirational leader, a legend and a lion’.
Inter Milan, Celtic’s opponents in the 1967 European Cup final, paid tribute to McNeill on Twitter.
— Inter (@Inter_en) April 23, 2019
Manchester City, who were managed by McNeill between 1983-1986, also paid tribute.
We are sad to learn of the passing of Billy McNeill who managed the Club between 1983-86.
Everyone at Manchester City would like to send our sincere condolences to Billy's family. 💙 pic.twitter.com/GVnooh05Yj
— Manchester City (@ManCity) April 23, 2019
McNeil also enjoyed success during two spells as manager at Celtic Park, winning four cups and four league titles.
The Scot also managed Aberdeen, Clyde and Aston Villa.
His family said in a statement that he had ‘”fought to the end” and also urged supporters to share their stories and memories of him.
McNeil had been suffering from dementia since 2010.