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Liverpool legend dies at 46

Liverpool FC, anfieldreview.com, Martin Kelly

It is with heavy hearts that we have to report on the death of Gary Ablett, who has fought against non-Hodgkin's lymphoma for the past 16-months. The contributors to this site have all had the pleasure of watching Gary play with distinction for Liverpool Football Club.

He made his debut back in December 1986 against Charlton Athletic coming into a team that would go on to win two League Championships and FA Cup and three Charity Shields (one shared). He played at left back and centre half and played with distinction in one of the greatest Liverpool teams, which due to the Heysel tragedy never got to grace the European stage.

Gary went on to play for Everton, winning another FA Cup medal and then went on to coach the Liverpool reserves before taking the managers job at Stockport County and another coaching role at Ipswich Town.

The League Managers Association (LMA) released a statement stating "On behalf of Gary Ablett's family the LMA has today confirmed that Gary passed away peacefully last night following a hard fought 16-month battle against non-Hodgkin's lymphoma," said an LMA statement. "Respected throughout the game by players, coaches and managers alike Gary will be sadly missed. The LMA's thoughts and condolences are with Gary's wife Jacqueline and children."

"Liverpool Football Club were today saddened to learn of the death of former player Gary Ablett," said a statement from the club. The staff of Liverpool FC would like to send our condolences to the family and friends of Gary."

A statement from Everton said: "Everyone at Everton was saddened to learn of the death of Gary Ablett. "The thoughts of everyone at Everton are with Gary's family and friends at this tragic time."

Former club Birmingham have announced a minute's silence will be observed before their npower Championship match at Peterborough today with another minutes silence to be held at St Andrew's on Saturday before their FA Cup third round match with Wolves. "The thoughts of everyone connected with Birmingham City Football Club are with the friends and family of Gary Ablett," said a Birmingham City statement.

Former Liverpool and Germany midfielder Dietmar Hamann, who became Stockport manager in 2011, said on Sky Sports, "It's devastating news. He's a very highly regarded and respected man on Merseyside and a true legend."

All the contributors to this site, would like to thank Gary for the joy he gave us as a player and hope that although this is a sad time for his family, they should be proud that he gave so much pleasure to not only Liverpool and Everton fans, but football fans around the world. Our thoughts are with his family at this time and may God bless him and may he rest in peace.

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