RIP Cyrille Regis: West Brom Icon Sadly Passes Away Aged 59

Cyrille Regis

"Devastated this morning my hero my pioneer the man behind the reason I wanted to play football has passed away", former England striker, Andy Cole, said on Twitter.

He subsequently moved to Coventry City where, as the highlight of a seven-year stint from 1984-91, he lifted the FA Cup in the thrilling 1987 final, won 3-2 against Tottenham Hotspur.

The forward, alongside Laurie Cunningham and Brendon Batson, formed a trio nicknamed the Three Degrees and played an integral role in the acceptance of black footballers in the English leagues. Our honest condolences go to his family friends and colleagues.

Cyrille Regis, a pioneer for black soccer players in England who endured racist abuse while forging a career with West Bromwich Albion and playing for England, has died.

The PFA tweeted that Regis was "a true gentleman and legend, he will be deeply missed".

As a player, Regis stood out for his powerful performances at centre-forward and his former manager Atkinson believes he should have had more recognition by his country.

"But for me, I will never forget Cyrille the footballer - a wonderful, wonderful player who had everything and who defenders of the time would have hated facing".

Defending champs India beat Pakistan by 7 wickets
Deepak Malik was awarded as Man of the Match, while Muhammad Jamil was recognized as "Most Valuable Player". The win places India at the top of their table while the hosts closely follow them on the second spot.

British broadcaster and West Brom fan Adrian Chiles praised the role played by Regis in dealing with racism in the English game in the 1970s and 1980s.

"They did so much for the game and so much for the cause of black footballers".

He made 614 league appearances and scored 158 league goals during his 19 year professional playing career. Regis later played for Aston Villa, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Wycombe Wanderers and Chester City.

"The worst for me was getting my first England cap and receiving a bullet through the post saying 'if you put your foot on our Wembley turf, you'll get one of these for your knees, '" Regis recalled.

West Brom signed Regis in May 1977 for 5,000 pounds. He was part of Coventry's FA Cup-winning side in 1987.

Football Association chairman Greg Clarke said: "Cyrille will not only be remembered across the West Midlands and England for his goalscoring exploits, but as someone who broke new ground and paved the way for a generation of young black players in this country during the 70s and 80s".

He was awarded an MBE in the Birthday Honours in 2008 for his services to football.

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