- Bernard Halford has been reported dead at age 77 after a brief illness
- The former club secretary was named City's life president after retiring from his 40 year service at the Etihad Stadium
Former Manchester City secretary, Bernard Halford, has passed away at the age of 77 after a brief illness.
Halford, popularly referred to as the club's life president, spent close to four decades as the club secretary - signing off on hundreds of player transfers during his career.
The former administrator, who bagged the title of the Citizens 'life president' on his retirement was said to have been battling unconfirmed illness.
Reacting to his death, Man City boss Pep Guardiola admitted that Bernanrd's death was an unpleasant news to his hears.
"It is such sad news to hear of Bernard Halford’s passing. City boss told club's official website.
The Spanish born tactician further stated that: "It was an honour and a privilege to meet and talk football with him and his knowledge of this football club was amazing.
“He was a great man, but moreover, he was also a great football man with a complete understanding of the game from grass roots level up.
"His whole life was dedicated to the game, but mostly to Manchester City and we were lucky to have him."
The Citizens were said to have invited Halford to join them in the Royal Box at Wembley to lift the FA Cup after their victory over Stoke.
During an interview last year, Halford said: "On the day of the match, I got told that if we won the Cup, I was going up to receive it. The only person, other than a player or a manager, to lift the Cup at Wembley!
“I was 69 years old and I lifted the FA Cup in front of 90,000 people at Wembley. Can you imagine?
"I remember sitting watching Stanley Matthews win it in 1953. Fifty-eight years later, it’s Alice In Wonderland stuff.”
Club chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak said: “The loss of Bernard Halford marks an extremely sad day for our football club.
"Bernard was an incredibly dedicated, loyal and wonderful part of the City story for almost five decades. I was fortunate and privileged enough to know him for ten of those years.
"He lived and breathed Manchester City and was a tireless advocate for us. His depth of knowledge about Manchester City was unparalleled and his enthusiasm for the Club infectious.
"Even as his health deteriorated, he was a familiar face at the City Football Academy or at the Etihad Stadium.
"In reflecting on his life, I am reminded of the enormous pride he – and we - took from him being able to realise a boyhood dream by lifting the FA Cup in 2011. It was a special moment not only for Bernard, but for everybody connected with Manchester City.
"Though this is incredibly sad news for everyone, I know that his love of the Club and his many friends here were a constant focus for him, particularly over a difficult last year.
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