‘The face of a football generation’ - tributes paid to Jimmy Hill who has died aged 87

File photo dated 09/04/87 of footballer turned broadcaster Jimmy Hill. Photo: PA Wire

File photo dated 09/04/87 of footballer turned broadcaster Jimmy Hill. Photo: PA Wire - Credit: PA

Former football player and Match Of The Day presenter Jimmy Hill has died aged 87, his family have confirmed.

Jimmy Hill, forward for Fulham Football Club, trains at the clubs Craven Cottage ground. Photo: PA

Jimmy Hill, forward for Fulham Football Club, trains at the clubs Craven Cottage ground. Photo: PA - Credit: PA

The Londoner, who made his name playing for Fulham in the 1950s, enjoyed a second career as a distinguished broadcaster.

He died after suffering from Alzheimer's disease for a number of years.

In a statement, Jane Morgan, spokeswoman for Hill's wife Bryony, said: 'It is with great sadness that Bryony Hill and the children of Jimmy Hill have announced that Jimmy passed away peacefully today aged 87 after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease. Bryony was beside him.'

Hill will be cremated at a private ceremony.

Match of the Day presenter Jimmy Hill on set on 1 September 1973. Photo: BBC/PA Wire

Match of the Day presenter Jimmy Hill on set on 1 September 1973. Photo: BBC/PA Wire - Credit: PA

A service for his friends and colleagues will be held in the new year, Ms Morgan said.

Stars from the world of football paid tribute to Hill.

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BBC Sport presenter Dan Walker said: 'Very sad to hear about Jimmy Hill. He did everything in the game. Much of what we take for granted came from his drive to innovate.'

Radio presenter and former Liverpool striker Stan Collymore described him as 'the face of football for a generation'.

Jimmy Hill pictured in 2002. Photo: Tim Whitby/PA Wire

Jimmy Hill pictured in 2002. Photo: Tim Whitby/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Former England goalkeeper David James hailed him as 'a legend', while broadcaster Piers Morgan said he was 'a great football man'.

Tony Hall, director general of the BBC, said: 'For generations of fans Jimmy Hill was an authoritative voice as both a presenter and analyst.

'He was committed to innovation in every aspect of the game, including broadcasting, and always believed supporters came first.

'His influence lives on in the programmes we enjoy today.'

Jimmy Hill (left) collecting money at half time for the SPARKS charity at Craven Cottage, in 2007. P

Jimmy Hill (left) collecting money at half time for the SPARKS charity at Craven Cottage, in 2007. Photo: Rebecca Naden/PA Wire - Credit: PA

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