Former Mossley manager John Sainty has died at the age of 77.
Sainty had a seven-month spell as Lilywhites manager in 1987, winning 10 and drawing nine of his 33 games.
He combined his job at Mossley with being landlord of the Railway Inn, Woodley.
Tony Bugby, who was covering Mossley for the Oldham Evening Chronicle at the time, fondly remembers working alongside Sainty who initially turned around a struggling side before a disappointing start to the 1987/88 season saw him lose his job.
He said: “It was pre-internet, social media and mobile telephones and covering football was far removed to the present day.
“It was a case of ringing John at the pub on a landline or, as my route home from the Chronicle took me past John’s pub, I would sometimes call in to get the latest news.
“John was an extremely likeable individual and his knowledge of football extraordinary. He was also a coach with a great reputation in the game.”
Sainty also managed Chester City, Armthorpe Welfare and Glossop at the end of a successful playing career.
A former England schoolboy international, Sainty, who came from Poplar in the east end of London, began his playing days at Tottenham Hotspur but never made a senior appearance before being sold to Reading for their club record transfer fee.
Forward Sainty went on to play more than 200 times for Reading, AFC Bournemouth, Mansfield and Aldershot.
Sainty had a lengthy association with John Bond who he met when playing for Bournemouth.
They were reunited when Bond became Norwich City manager and appointed Sainty as first-team coach.
Sainty became assistant manager when Bond later managed both Manchester City and Burnley.
After his foray into management, Sainty later became assistant manager to both Danny Bergara and Dave Jones at Stockport County and followed Jones to Southampton where he was chief scout and academy director with his most prized capture Adam Lallana from AFC Bournemouth’s Centre of Excellence for a £10,000 fee at the age of 12.
After settling back on the South Coast, Sainty managed Lymington and New Milton and Bemerton Heath Harlequins in the Wessex League.
Sainty, who latterly lived in Verwood, Dorset, leaves wife Lindsay and family.