Northern Ireland journalist Malcolm Brodie, the former sports editor of the Belfast Telegraph, has died at the age of 86.
Brodie, a Scot, reported on 14 World Cup football finals, his first in 1954.
He was evacuated from Glasgow to Portadown, Co Armagh, during the Second World War. It was here that he started his journalistic career before moving to the Telegraph where he set up the paper's first sports desk.
Brodie was awarded an MBE and an honorary doctorate by the University of Ulster. Fifa also recognised his contribution to journalism.
Jim Gracey, the Belfast Telegraph group's sports editor, said today: "He was a wonderful man and a wonderful journalist who must have taught generations of sports reporters, myself included.
"He had a contacts book like no other. Everybody in soccer - from Pele to Sir Alex Ferguson - knew him.
"The man was beyond a legend."
In a letter to Jim Shaw and Jim Boyce, the President and Honorary Life President of the Irish Football Association respectively, Fifa president Sebb Blatter said: “I would like to express my deepest condolences for the loss of one of the true greats of sports journalism and a personal friend of mine, Dr Malcolm Brodie.
“Quality sports reporting is essential to sports organisations such as FIFA, thanks to its ability to transmit all the colour and emotions of major competitions such as the FIFA World Cup to the fans back home.
"There was none better at this than Malcolm, who covered an incredible 14 FIFA World Cups and whose contribution to the sport was deservedly recognised with the bestowal of the FIFA Jules Rimet Award on him in FIFA’s centennial year of 2004.
“May his legend continue to inspire today’s sports reporters to promote our game and its spirit with the same passion and commitment that he did.”
Please use the comment box below to leave your condolences