Celtic legend Billy McNeill dies aged 79

Legendary former Celtic captain Billy McNeill has died aged 79.

McNeill was the first Briton to lift the European Cup with the Scottish champions back in the late ’60s.

He led Celtic when they beat Inter Milan 2-1 in 1967 and captained the club to nine successive titles, seven Scottish Cups and six League Cups.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – OCTOBER 15: A statue of Billy McNeil is seen prior to the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Motherwell at Celtic Park Stadium on October 15, 2016, in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

In two spells as Celtic boss, he won four titles and four cups. He managed Manchester City and Aston Villa too.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - MARCH 31: Scott Brown and Scott Bain of Celtic are confronted by Andy Halliday of Rangers at the final whistle during the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Rangers at Celtic Park on March 31, 2019 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

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McNeill had been suffering from dementia since 2010 and was unable to speak during his final years.

A statement from his children on the Celtic website read: “It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our father Billy McNeill.

“He passed away late last night (Monday, April 22) surrounded by his family and loved ones. He suffered from dementia for a number of years and fought bravely to the end, showing the strength and fortitude he always has done throughout his life.”

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