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Pochettino honours Mackay

04 March 2015, 10:08

London - Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has added his voice to tributes to club great Dave Mackay, who has died at the age of 80.

Former Scotland midfielder Mackay, a member of Tottenham's feted 1961 Double-winning team, passed away at a hospital in Nottingham on Monday evening.

Spurs have confirmed they will hold a minute's applause prior to Wednesday's league game at home to Swansea City, while players will wear black armbands and there will be a special tribute at half-time.

"I want to say it is a very sad loss for Tottenham," Pochettino told a press conference.

"It is a great loss for British football. He was a legend for Tottenham and in British football. A very sad day and I want to send condolences to his family and friends.

"He is a legend, big player and manager, and it is a very sad day. It is emotional, yes. Our players know it is important to get the three points (against Swansea)."

Mackay won 22 caps for Scotland and lifted all three domestic trophies with his first club Hearts before moving south of the border to join Tottenham in 1959.

He helped Spurs win the league and FA Cup in 1961 -- making them the first English team to achieve the feat in the 20th century -- and went on to win the FA Cup on two further occasions in 1962 and 1967.

A tough-tackling midfielder, he also steered Derby County to the First Division title as a manager in 1975.

Arsene Wenger, manager of Tottenham's arch rivals Arsenal, also paid tribute to Mackay, branding him an "iconic figure" and describing his death as "a sad moment for English football".

The Scottish Football Association announced there would be a minute's applause in honour of Mackay before Scotland's friendly against Northern Ireland later this month.

"The Scottish FA is deeply saddened by the news of Dave Mackay's death," the SFA said in a statement on its website.

"His last international appearance occurred against Northern Ireland in 1965 and the Scottish FA believe it is appropriate that a minute's applause should be observed in his honour prior to the forthcoming match against Michael O'Neill's side at Hampden Park on Wednesday, 25th March."

Another Scottish football great, former Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson, said Mackay was one of the toughest players he had come up against during his playing career.

"I played against him once and I'm glad it was only once!" Ferguson told Sky Sports News.

"He was hard. He was one of the hardest men of all time -- a great Scottish player. You think of Denis Law, Kenny Dalglish, Graeme Souness; Dave Mackay was along with them.

"He came back from two broken legs. He broke it against Manchester United actually, recovered, and broke it again.

"He went on to play for Derby County and won the league and then became the manager, which was not an easy task because he followed Brian Clough, of course.

"But he's had a fantastic career both as player and as manager. I always remember he was a good friend of mine."



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