TRIBUTES have been paid to a former Southport FC goalkeeper who recently passed away.
Jack Richardson, who made 103 appearances for the Sandgrounders between 1956-1959, died at Southport and Ormskirk Hospital on Sunday, May 30 - just a few days after he turned 88.
Jack was born in Rock Ferry but lived in Formby since 1967.
An obituary penned by long-time Southport supporter Michael Braham, read: “Supporters who, like me, have been following the fortunes of Southport Football Club for over 60 years, will be saddened to learn of the death of Jack Richardson.
“Some 25 years ago when my son Alex and I were playing imaginary games of football in the back garden and it was my turn to go in goal I would tell him ‘I’m Jack Richardson’. I have never forgotten my first Haig Avenue hero. Jack joined Southport on a two months trial as a part-time professional, making his Lancashire Combination debut against Lancaster City in the opening day of the 1956-57 season. After successfully completing his trial he was signed for the rest of the season. Turning full time professional in 1958, Jack was an ever-present in the inaugural Fourth Division campaign, which was my first full season watching Southport .
“Jack became my hero after he saved a penalty kick against Barrow. The previous week he had not been at his best as Southport lost to Halifax Town in the FA Cup and he had asked to be placed on the transfer list.
“Although it was reported that Newcastle United were interested in signing him, Jack remained at Haig Avenue until early the following season when he was allowed to join Wigan Athletic.”
Jack was employed as a security officer for many years at the Bank of England and was a popular visitor to Haig Avenue.