Football pays tribute as Leyton Orient manager Justin Edinburgh dies aged 49

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Tributes have been paid to Leyton Orient manager Justin Edinburgh, who has died at the age of 49 after suffering a cardiac arrest.

The former Tottenham defender was taken to hospital on Monday, just weeks after guiding Orient to promotion back to the Football League.

An Orient statement read: “It is with profound and utmost sadness that Leyton Orient announces its manager Justin Edinburgh has passed away.

“Justin suffered a cardiac arrest last Monday and passed away on Saturday.

“All our thoughts are with Justin’s wife Kerri and their children Charlie and Cydnie at this very sad time.”

Edinburgh became Orient boss in November 2017 after spells in charge at Newport, Gillingham and Northampton, all of whom sent their condolences.

As a player he won the FA Cup and League Cup during a decade with Spurs while also turning out for Portsmouth and Southend.

Tottenham were quick to pay tribute to their former player, saying on Twitter: “We are deeply saddened and shocked to hear of the passing of Justin Edinburgh.

“Our heartfelt condolences and thoughts go out to his family and friends at this terribly difficult time as well as everyone that worked alongside Justin at Leyton Orient.”

His former Spurs team-mate Darren Anderton tweeted: “Can’t believe it.. such sad news about’s not fair. One of the greatest guys you could ever wish to meet. When you were around him, you just laughed and smiled constantly. RIP mate.”

Orient chairman Nigel Travis told the club’s website: “We are completely heartbroken by this tragedy.

“All our thoughts and love are with the Edinburgh family and we know from the messages that have flooded into the club over the last week that the wider football world will share our sentiments.

Leyton Orient v Braintree Town – Vanarama National League – Breyer Group Stadium
Justin Edinburgh celebrated promotion in April (Mark Kerton/PA)

Orient striker Macauley Bonne tweeted: “There are no words to describe the loss of our gaffer, our leader & inspiration.

“First & foremost, my deepest condolences to Justin’s family. He brought us all together – we’re eternally grateful for everything you’ve done.”

League Managers’ Association chairman Howard Wilkinson said: “Justin will be remembered by all in the game as a true professional.

“A hard-working man who became successful as a player at the highest level of the game and turned his love of football into a life-long career as a coach and as a manager.

“At a time when he should be celebrating the success of his team and preparing for the rewards of league football next season, he has been lost to the game and to his community too soon.”

The Professional Footballers’ Association said: “We’re saddened to hear the news about Justin.

“Our thoughts are with his friends and family and, of course, Leyton Orient at this difficult time.”

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