Former Manchester City and England midfielder Colin Bell has died at the age of 74 from a short illness.
Bell is a city legend, making just under 500 appearances for the club and winning the Premier League title, FA Cup, League Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup. He was also selected 48 times by his country during his career, with the Three Lions at the 1970 World Cup in Mexico.
The sad news was overturned by a statement posted on City’s website, which read: “It is with the deepest sorrow and heaviest of heart that we announce the passing of Manchester City legend Colin Bell.
“Colin passed away peacefully this afternoon after a short illness unrelated to Covid, aged 74. He leaves behind his wife Marie, their children Jon and Dawn and their grandchildren, Luke, Mark, Isla and Jack.
Bell was nicknamed “Colin the King” by city supporters and a booth at Etihad Stadium was renamed in his honor in 2004.
Citizen Chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak added his own tribute to one of the club’s best players.
“Colin Bell will always be remembered as one of Manchester City’s greatest players and the very sad news today of his passing will affect everyone linked to our club.
“I am fortunate to be able to speak regularly with his former manager and his teammates, and it is clear to me that Colin was a player held in very high regard by all those who have had the privilege of playing alongside him or to see him play. The passage of time hardly erases the memories of his genius. The fact that we have a booth at the Etihad stadium named Colin says a lot about the importance of his contribution to this club.
“Our club has lost a real big one. Thoughts and best wishes from all go to Colin’s family.
Bell started his career with Bury where he spent three years before moving to City. After leaving Maine Road, he spent a brief stint in San Jose Earthquakes before retiring in 1980.
In his later years he did significant charitable work and received an MBE for community service in 2004.