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OBITUARY

Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson’s wife dies aged 84

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Sir Alex Ferguson credited his wife with persuading him not to retire in 2002

Lady Cathy Ferguson, the wife of former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, has died aged 84.

The couple married in 1966, spending 57 years as husband and wife, and had three sons, including Peterborough boss Darren Ferguson.

“We are deeply saddened to confirm the passing yesterday of Lady Cathy Ferguson,” a statement from the Ferguson family said.

“The family asks for privacy at this time.”

Cathy and Sir Alex Ferguson first met 59 years ago

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Flags at Old Trafford have been lowered to half-mast as a mark of respect, and the men’s and women’s teams will wear black armbands in their fixtures this weekend.

Manchester United said in a statement: “Everyone at Manchester United sends our heartfelt condolences to Sir Alex Ferguson and his family on the passing of Lady Cathy, a beloved wife, mother, sister, grandmother and great-grandmother, and a tower of strength for Sir Alex throughout his career.”

Cathy and Sir Alex, 81, met in 1964 while they were both working at a typewriter factory.

For 27 of their years together Sir Alex was manager of Manchester United, and Cathy is said to have played a key role in persuading him not to retire in 2002.

Writing in his autobiography, Ferguson said she had told him: “One, your health is good. Two, I’m not having you in the house. And three, you’re too young anyway.”

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When Sir Alex did announce his retirement 11 years later, he said: “My wife Cathy has been the key figure throughout my career, providing a bedrock of both stability and encouragement.

“Words are not enough to express what this has meant to me.”

Several clubs paid tribute to Cathy on social medial.

Manchester City posted on X: “Everyone at Manchester City sends their condolences to Sir Alex Ferguson and his family at this very difficult time.”

Arsenal offered their “heartfelt condolences”, adding: “May Lady Cathy rest in peace.”

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Sir Alex’s former club St Mirren said: “Everyone at St Mirren Football Club sends its deepest condolences to Sir Alex Ferguson and family following the sad news of the passing of Lady Cathy Ferguson.”

Aberdeen, another of Sir Alex’s former clubs, also sent their condolences, while Peterborough said: “Everyone at Peterborough United Football Club offers our sincere condolences to Darren Ferguson and his family on the passing of his beloved mother, Lady Cathy.”

-BBC

 

 

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Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

OBITUARY

CAF commiserates with  family of the late Egyptian player, Ahmed Refaat

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The Confédération Africaine de Football has conveyed its condolences to the family of Ahmed Refaat, saying that it is saddened by the news of the sudden passing of the Egyptian player.

 Ahmed Refaat, 31,  who played for Morden Future in the Egyptian Premier League, suffered cardiac arrest last March died on Saturday, 6th  July 2024.

CAF President, Dr Patrice Motsepe conveys heartfelt condolences to the family and also to  Egyptian Football Association and the entore Egyptian Football family.

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OBITUARY

Egypt international Refaat dies aged 31

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Egypt international Ahmed Refaat has died aged 31, his club Modern Sport said on Saturday, following a heart attack during an Egyptian Premier League match in March.

Refaat was placed in an intensive care unit on March 11 after collapsing in the 88th minute of Modern Future’s league match against Al-Ittihad Alexandria.

The striker, who was fitted with a pacemaker, was discharged a month later and continued to receive treatment.

“Modern Future FC announces the death of Ahmed Refaat, first team and Egyptian national team player, as a result of a serious deterioration in his health,” the club said in a statement.

“He was transferred to the hospital to die after an uphill journey of struggle following the health crisis that occurred on March 11 2024.”

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Egypt captain and Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah paid tribute to his teammate.

“May God continue to bless his family and all his loved ones,” Salah wrote on X.

-Reuters

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OBITUARY

 Nigeria loses former sports minister

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A former Minister of Youth and Sports and one-time Military Administrator of Benue State, Air Vice Marshal Adebayo Lawal (retd.), has died at the age of 83.

The Punch reports that the  retired military officer passed away in his sleep in the early hours of Sunday, June 23, 2024, at his home.

The news was confirmed to The Punch by his daughter, Mrs. Yinka Enahoro, and corroborated by the Sergeant At Arms at the National Assembly, Air Commodore Sani Zakari (retd.).

Zakari stated, “AVM Frank Ajobena (retd.) further informed us that AVM Bayo Lawal passed on in his sleep at the early hours of Sunday, Jun 23, 2024.”

Born on September 14, 1941, in Offa, Kwara State, Lawal was a pioneer officer of the Nigerian Air Force, which he joined in 1963.

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He received his training as a military pilot in West Germany, graduating in 1964.

Throughout his illustrious career, Lawal held numerous high-ranking positions within the NAF.

These included Commander of NAF Port Harcourt (1969-1970), Commander of Enugu Air Force Base (1970-72), and two stints as Commander of NAF Kano (1972-1973 and 1975-1977). He also served as Air Officer Commanding HQ Tactical Air Command NAF Makurdi from 1977 to 1978.

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