Former Liverpool captain, coach Ronnie Moran dies
LONDON (AP) — Ronnie Moran, a former Liverpool captain whose later coaching prowess helped the club dominate European and English soccer in the 1970s and 80s, has died. He was 83.
The death of Moran, who spent almost 50 years as a player or coach at Liverpool, was announced by his family on Twitter and confirmed by the club on Wednesday. He was diagnosed with vascular dementia four years ago.
"I am devastated to tell everyone on behalf of the family that my dad passed away this morning after a short illness," Moran's son Paul wrote on Twitter.
As a player or coach, Moran won 13 league titles, four European Cups, two UEFA Cups, five FA Cups and five League Cups.
"The success we enjoyed during that period is something that we are all able to look back on with immense fondness and pride, but it should never be forgotten that without people like Ronnie it would not have been possible for us to achieve as much as we did," former Liverpool great Kenny Dalglish said.
"In fact, even after he left the club right up until the present day, the club have continued to feel the benefits of the groundwork he laid through his sheer talent and passion."
Moran made 379 appearances from 1952-68 before being asked by manager Bill Shankly to join his renowned "Boot Room."
Although a tough disciplinarian renowned for his petrifying demeanor, Moran was admired by those under his command and even some of Liverpool's fiercest rivals.
"I wish that I'd had 1 pound for every argument I've had with Ronnie, but after the game he was always the first to offer you a drink," former Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson said. "There is no question Ronnie Moran is one of Liverpool's all-time greats."
Born near Liverpool in 1934, Moran combined his work as an apprentice electrician with trying to break into soccer. The left back made his first team debut in 1952 and was so devoted to the club that he played on the afternoon of his wedding in 1957.
Toward the end of the 1960s, Moran began his foray into the second successful phase of his Liverpool career as a coach.
He worked under first-team managers Shankly, Bob Paisley, Joe Fagan, Dalglish, Graeme Souness and Roy Evans as Liverpool won 11 top-flight titles and four European Cups.
Moran had two spells as caretaker manager, the first coming in 1991 after Dalglish's resignation. Then, after Souness underwent heart surgery in 1992, he led Liverpool to the FA Cup title at Wembley Stadium. Moran retired in 1998 but remained a regular presence at the club.
"He taught me everything in my early years at Liverpool and the traditions of how the game should be played," Jamie Redknapp, a midfielder at Liverpool in the 1990s, told Sky Sports television.
"Young players now would be petrified of him because his bark was so loud. He had an amazing way of getting information across. You could hear him, no matter where you were on the pitch."