Friends and colleagues at the Evening Leader in Wrexham have paid tribute to chief football writer David Lovett, who has died aged 60.
The sports journalist (pictured) had covered Wrexham Football Club for more than 35 years, firstly at the Shropshire Star and then for the Evening Leader, where he had worked for the past 16 years.
He was also a lifelong fan of the club, and following his death 3,000 football fans rose and stood in silence at the Racecourse football ground in memory of the man who brought them the highs and lows of the club.
David had last year been treated for a heart complaint – during which time he only missed one match – but had appeared to have recovered well.
He was found dead at his home after he failed to turn up for work.
Evening Leader editor Richard Williams said: “David Lovett was a football writing legend in North East Wales. His byline guaranteed readers exclusive stories, written with authority and passion.
“He was a genuine character and never ducked from controversy.
“We have been absolutely inundated with tributes from journalists, readers and footballers. He will be sorely missed.”
Evening Leader sports editor Nick Harrison also paid tribute.
He said: “David Lovett’s match reports were masterpieces. He was the sports writer who put the pun into football punditry.
“He was humourous, sometimes boisterous but always extremely generous. Wherever he went, Dave left an impression. Whether it was good or bad, he didn’t mind – as long as he got his Exclusive by David Lovett!
“He never ducked out of confrontational issues no matter how big the manager or the player.
“He asked the questions others wouldn’t ask and then the rest of Press gang would home in on the scraps like vultures.
“Dave would stand out a mile at Press Conferences. He was the only one taking a proper shorthand note while others went for the easy option and thrusted dictaphones in the manager’s face.
“He was proud of his Pitman’s note. He was part of the old school.”
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