Gary Lineker pays tribute to Sir Bobby Robson

Gary Lineker has paid tribute to former England manager Sir Bobby Robson, who died on Friday after a long battle with cancer. He was 76.

The Match of the Day presenter and former England football star told BBC Sport: “It is a sad day and a great loss. He was a wonderful man and will be deeply missed by everybody in the country.

“Bobby was hugely significant in my career and gave me my chance to play for England. I played in two World Cups under him and I never played under a more enthusiastic man. He gave so much to the game.”

Alan Shearer, former England and Newcastle striker, also told the BBC: “I will always remember him being a great great man – not only for football.

“For me as an individual, he saved my career at Newcastle. He knew what to do with me and how to deal with the team – but he kept us in the top-flight and then got us into Europe.”

Floral tributes have already been laid at St James’ Park in memory of Sir Bobby, who is best known for leading England to the 1990 World Cup semi-final.

The Newcastle ground will also be open over the weekend and there will be a two-minute silence before Friday’s friendly match between Ipswich and Valladolid.

Sir Bobby, who was knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2002, was first diagnosed with cancer 18 years ago in 1991.

He has since fought bowel cancer in 1992, a malignant melanoma in 1995, and a tumour in his right lung and a brain tumour in 2006.

A statement issued on behalf of Sir Bobby’s family said: “It is with great sadness that it has been announced today that Sir Bobby Robson has lost his long and courageous battle with cancer.

“He died very peacefully this morning (Friday) at his home in County Durham with his wife and family beside him.”