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Tributes to footballer Ian Redford

Tributes have been paid to Ian Redford, once Scotland's most expensive footballer, who was found dead at the age of 53.

The midfielder played with Rangers, Dundee, Dundee United, Ipswich, St Johnstone, Brechin and Raith Rovers in a career that lasted almost 20 years.

He was found dead in Irvine, Ayrshire, yesterday morning. It is understood there are no suspicious circumstances.

A police spokeswoman said a body was found in a wooded area and a post-mortem is to be carried out.

Mr Redford started his career with Dundee before joining Rangers for a then Scottish record fee of £210,000 in 1980.

A statement on the Dundee's website described him as ''one of the most talented kids to come through the Dens' youth system over the last few decades''.

It read: ''Ian was mainly a striker during his time at Dens - and he scored four goals in one match against St Mirren in 1978 in a 4-1 win, something not done by an individual since.

''It was the kind of performance that brought attention from richer clubs and Ian was sold to Rangers for a Scottish record transfer fee not long afterwards.

''While there he won trophies and his return to the city to play for rivals Dundee United saw him earn runners up medals in the Uefa and Scottish Cups.

''Ian was a silky and attacking player who was not quite the stereotypical footballer - he'll be missed. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time.''

John MacDonald, who played with Redford at Rangers in the 1980s, was shocked to hear of his death.

''It's unbelievable," he said.

''He was a brilliant player, his pace and skill down the wing was great and he set up a few goals for me. He was great to play with, I remember him scoring the winner in the 1981 League Cup final against Dundee United and that was a great day.

''You couldn't meet a nicer guy off the park."

The midfielder moved to Dundee United in 1985 where he played in their Uefa Cup Final defeat by IFK Gothenburg in 1987.

The club said: ''The memory of his performances for United at a time when the Club competed in the higher echelons of European football will forever be part of our history and his winning goal against Borussia Monchengladbach in the semi final of the Uefa Cup in 1987 will always be looked back on with particular fondness by Arabs everywhere.

''Our thoughts and prayers are with Ian's family at this very sad time.''

Rangers manager Ally McCoist paid tribute to Redford, who he played with in the 1980s.

There will be a minute's silence held in memory of the 53-year-old before Rangers' match against East Fife this afternoon.

McCoist said: "We are deeply shocked to hear the very sad news that Ian has passed away. I had the honour of playing with him early in my Rangers career and he was a terrific lad and an extremely talented footballer who will be sadly missed.

"Everyone at Rangers sends their sincere condolences to Ian's family and our thoughts are with them at this very difficult time."


From Belfast Telegraph