Sir Tom Finney, 5 April 1922 – 14 February 2014

Hearing of the passing of English football legend Sir Tom Finney brought back fond memories for me of one of the best players to have played for England and Preston North End.

Tom Finney was one of my boyhood heroes and I did have the pleasure of having dinner with Tom in the Four Seasons Hotel in Preston some years ago. The dinner was a gathering of ex-footballers from England and Scotland, including Mike Summerbee, formerly of Manchester City, and Paddy Crerand, formerly of Manchester United, plus most of the Lisbon Lions. It was a fantastic night for me meeting Sir Tom, as I had heard so much about him being not only a great footballer but also a fine man and extremely humble about his achievements.

Both the occasion and the man lived up to all my hopes and expectations and it is sad now to say goodbye to such a perfect gentleman.

(For more on Tom Finney’s life and career, visit the website sirtomfinney.com.)