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Dublin: 5 °C Monday 24 September, 2018

'I owe him a huge debt for bringing me home' - Ex-Newcastle chairman Freddy Shepherd dies

A popular figure at St James’ Park, he passed away today at the age of 76.

Shepherd with Alan Shearer and Graeme Souness in 2005.
Shepherd with Alan Shearer and Graeme Souness in 2005.
Image: Owen Humphreys/PA Archive/PA Images

FORMER NEWCASTLE UNITED chairman Freddy Shepherd died “peacefully at his home” today at the age of 76, his family have confirmed.

Born in 1941, Shepherd, along with John Hall, helped the north-east club secure Premier League status in 1993 and was pivotal in attracting Kevin Keegan and Alan Shearer to join during his time at St James’ Park.

The businessman — who was awarded the freedom of the city of Newcastle earlier this year — sold his share of the club to Mike Ashley in 2007 after a 10-year stint as chairman.

“Freddy Shepherd, former chairman of Newcastle United and chairman of Shepherd Offshore Group and Triple S Sports & Entertainment Group, sadly passed away peacefully at his home last night,” the family announced in a statement.

“At this difficult time the family have asked that their privacy be respected and all media enquiries should be directed to Mark Whittle of Triple S Communications.”

Shearer led the tributes to his ”great friend” on social media, thanking Shepherd for bringing him back to his home city in 1996 for a world-record fee of £15million.

Long-serving former Ireland goalkeeper Shay Given also paid tribute to a man he spent many happy years working alongside.

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