Ferguson salutes straight-talking fellow Scot and 'great friend' who reported from 14 World Cups
DEATH OF MALCOLM BRODIE:Warm tributes have been paid to the former Belfast Telegraph sports editor and football writer Malcolm Brodie who has died aged 86 – with Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson one of those to salute his compatriot.
Brodie attended 14 World Cups – his first the 1954 tournament in Switzerland which was won by West Germany. They included the three World Cups in which Northern Ireland was involved, in 1958 when the North reached the quarter finals, 1982 when Northern Ireland famously defeated the Spanish hosts and again reaching the quarters, and in 1986.
He was also in the press box for the World Cup finals featuring the Republic of Ireland, in 1990, 1994 and 2002.
Several sportspeople yesterday fondly remembered Brodie who arrived in Northern Ireland as a teenager after he was evacuated from Glasgow during World War Two.
On BBC Radio Ulster yesterday Ferguson, who knew him for 40 years, marvelled at how Brodie through all his life maintained his enthusiasm and energy for soccer.
“Malcolm was a fantastic man and a respected sports writer, and he was a great friend and was always good value in terms of his opinion,” he said.
“He cut to the chase, quite simply that’s how he was. He was straight talking and one thing I always admired about him, he never changed his accent, which is very difficult living in a place like Belfast.” added Ferguson.
Brodie started his journalistic career in Portadown before moving to the Belfast Telegraph where he set up the newspaper’s first sports desk.
Fifa president Sepp Blatter also haspaid tribute to Brodie. In a letter to Jim Shaw and Jim Boyce, the president and honorary life president of the Irish Football Association respectively, Blatter wrote: “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. May his legend continue to inspire today’s sports reporters.”