A LEGENDARY footballer and England star went from playing in the World Cup to a millionaire selling toilet paper.
Iconic former Manchester City striker, Francis Lee, scored 148 goals in 330 appearances for the club.
Tragic news of the England legend’s death at the age of 79 after a long battle with cancer was announced yesterday.
Man City released a statement saying: “It is with the deepest sadness and heaviest of hearts we announce the passing of former Manchester City player and Chairman Francis Lee, aged 79.
“A Club legend in every sense, Francis made 330 appearances for City, scoring 148 goals.”
It continued: “Everyone at Manchester City would like to send their condolences to the friends and family of Francis at this very difficult time.
“As a mark of respect, flags around the Etihad Stadium and City Football Academy are flying at half-mast.
“More tributes from the club will follow in the coming days.”
The iconic player shot to fame across his successful 17 year career.
He won the First Division title, FA Cup, League Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup during his seven years at Maine Road between 1967 and 1974.
The player stared at Bolton in 1959, and he also went on to earn 27 caps for England between 1968 and 1972, scoring 10 goals.
“Frannie” Lee was awarded with Man City’s Player of the Year award in 1970 as well as the First Division Golden Boot in 1972.
Lee won the second First Division title of his career when he played with Derby in 1975.
The following year he hung up his boots when his two year stint with the club came to an end.
However, he returned to Man City in 1994 where he held the job of chairman for four years.
After his retirement from playing on the pitch, Francis went on to continue his successful career as a businessman.
The entrepreneur had set up a company manufacturing toilet and kitchen roll made from recycled paper when he was still a footballer.
Based in his hometown of Westhoughton, Bolton, F.H Lee eventually expanded to selling handkerchiefs, kitchen foil, and cling film.
It went on to become a major UK supplier to several huge firms.
Comedy legend Peter Kay even worked for the company as a young man.
Speaking to The Bolton News, Francis once said: “I was in business all the time I was playing football.
“It was part of the condition set by my father that if I wanted to try and become a footballer I had to plan for when the game had finished.”
He also added racehorse training to his list of profitable ventures after his final match.
In 1984, the toilet roll company sold for a whopping £8.35million.
The England star is survived by his wife, Gill, and their three children, Charlotte, Jonny and Nik.
Source: The Sun
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