Birmingham City goalkeeping legend Gil Merrick has died at the aged of 88.
The Sparkhill-born hero made more than 700 appearances for Blues between 1939 and 1960, and was capped 23 times by England.
Last year, Blues renamed their Railway Stand at St Andrew's the Gil Merrick Stand, while in August he became a recipient of a Broad Street Star on the Birmingham Walk of Fame, beating off competition from several other nominated Blues legends.
He said at the time: "First Birmingham City decided to name a stand after me and now this. I’m almost speechless!"
He was Blues' goalkeeper in the 1956 FA Cup Final when they lost to Manchester City, a match made famous by his opposite number Bert Trautmann playing despite breaking a bone in his neck during the game.
After Merrick's playing career, he took over managing Blues and led them to League Cup glory, beating Aston Villa in the 1963 final over two legs.
Colin Tattum's tribute to Gil Merrick will appear in Friday's Birmingham Mail.
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