Football

Former Ireland International Theo Foley Passes Away At 83

Former Ireland International Theo Foley Passes Away At 83

Former Ireland international Theo Foley has died at the age of 83.

Foley, who hailed from Inchicore, played the majority of his career in England, having started as a professional at Home Farm.

The former Charlton and Burnley man is most widely known as being George Graham's assistant whilst at Arsenal. He was one of the key men behind Arsenal's sensational title win in 1989, defeating Liverpool with a last gasp Michael Thomas goal to secure the league.

Foley left Arsenal in the aftermath of the title win to manage Northampton Town. Foley captained the Cobblers during his playing days, supplementing his football income by running a chipper in the town.

In 2018, Foley wrote an autobiography with his son, 'Theo Give Us A Ball: A Life In Football'. The book details the inner-workings of Arsenal's dressing room at the time of their league triumph. Foley singled out Niall Quinn as the worst trainer in the Arsenal dressing room at the time.

"Forwards are generally a bit moanier, a bit lazier and Quinny was no different, he moaned like hell when he wasn’t happy with what we were doing.

"Then he’d start moping along the big old Dub lump. He was a great lad all the same."

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In the book, Foley also recounts buying a leather coat out of the boot of former England captain Bobby Moore's car, as well as seeing the World Cup winner struggling to get into a bar a Wembley.

"I saw him at the old Wembley trying to get into the private bar after an England game and some arsehole on the door wouldn’t let him in without a pass.

“‘Can you get me in here, Theo?’ he said, as I walked past. The captain of the England World Cup winning side at the home of English football. What a joke.

“I pulled the doorman aside and gave him one hell of a bollocking as Bobby was just too modest to have a go.

"Ironically, there is now a bar at the New Wembley named after him as well as a restaurant and a statue outside. All correct and only right but all too late, unfortunately.”

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Sean Meehan

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