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Tributes to former Bristol Rovers player Ray Mabbutt

Tributes have been paid to former football player Ray Mabbutt, who played for Bristol Rovers.

RIP Ray Mabbutt 1936 - 2016 Credit: Bristol Rovers

Bristol Rovers have said they are saddened to learn of the death of their former player, who passed away at the age of 80 after suffering a heart attack.

Mabbutt signed for Rovers when he was 20 for just £9 a week.

He went on to play almost 400 times for the club over 15 years. He was still playing - for West Harptree - in his 40s.

He proved to be an exceptional signing, for he was still performing to a high standard over a decade later, having served the club through the majority of the glory years in Division Two and, following relegation in 1962, the seasons of re-establishing the side in third tier football.

A solid, dependable wing half.

– Bristol Rovers, via their website

You might say football was in Mabbutt's blood - two of his three sons grew up to become stars.

Kevin played for Bristol City before being signed by Crystal Palace, while Gary followed his father's footsteps to play for Bristol Rovers before going on to Tottenham Hotspur. He was capped 16 times for England.

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Bristol Rovers manager Darrell Clarke gives damningly honest assessment of 5-1 defeat to Swansea

Bristol Rovers manager Darrell Clarke has given a damningly honest assessment of his side's 5-1 defeat to Swansea.

When asked if he expected to face anyone as strong as his Premier League opponents next season Clarke said: "Let's bloody hope not!"

He was speaking after Saturday's gruelling defeat at the Memorial Stadium - with goals from Andre Ayew, Leroy Fer, Kyle Naughton and Wayne Routledge.

Forest Green striker joins Colchester United

Kurtis Guthrie joins Colchester United Credit: Forest Green Rovers

Forest Green Rovers striker, Kurtis Guthrie, has agreed a deal to join League 2 side, Colchester United.

The Us were relegated from League 1 at the end of last season.

Guthrie moves to the Essex club from Forest Green Rovers, who were beaten by Grimsby in the National League play-off final at Wembley in May.

The 23 year old spent two seasons with the Green Devils and made 43 league appearances for them last term, scoring 11 goals.

Jersey-born Guthrie earned his first professional contract in 2011 at League 2 club, Accrington Stanley, and went onto have spells with Bath City, Welling and Forest Green before securing his move back to the Football League with Colchester.

FOOTBALL: Lee Tomlin signs for Bristol City

Operations Manager Mark Ashton, New signing Lee Tomlin and Head Coach Lee Johnson at Ashton Gate today Credit: Bristol City FC

Lee Tomlin has signed a three-year contract to complete a switch from Premier League side AFC Bournemouth for an undisclosed fee.

He spent part of last season at Ashton Gate on loan - scoring six goals in 18 appearances

From the day the season finished I just wanted to come back.

I loved every minute of my loan spell at Bristol City; the people and the fans.

It was stressful at times this summer but I was just so desperate to come here. I can’t thank Steve Lansdown, Mark Ashton and the gaffer enough for making it happen.

It feels like a big weight off my shoulders now that it’s done. Hopefully I can start where I left off from last season.

– Lee Tomlin
Lee Tomlin in action for City against Hull in April Credit: PA

Head coach Lee Johnson says the club is delighted to welcome Lee back to Ashton Gate.

I believe we’ve signed the most talented player at Championship level in terms of ability. He was fantastic for us last season and I believe his best football is ahead of him.

– Lee Johnson, Head Coach, Bristol City
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