Everton manager Sean Dyche and his club captain Seamus Coleman paid tribute to the late Bill Kenwright by laying a wreath outside Goodison Park following the former chairman’s death aged 78.
Kenwright died Tuesday after undergoing surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from his liver. The Merseyside club mourned while numerous athletes expressed their condolences.
Farhad Moshiri was among the names who paid tribute to Kenwright following his death, while Everton’s rivals Liverpool also offered support – and now coach Dyche and his captain have joined the ranks in making an emotional gesture.
Everton posted a photo on social media on Wednesday afternoon of the couple delivering the floral tribute to a statue of club legend Dixie Dean outside the stadium at Goodison Park.
The club’s flowers were accompanied by a note that read: “In loving memory of our chairman, our leader, our friend and our inspiration.” With love and thanks from everyone at Everton Football Club.
Everton manager Sean Dyche and captain Seamus Coleman laid a wreath outside Goodison Park to pay tribute to the late Bill Kenwright
In a statement on behalf of the club, Kenwright was described as “our leader, our friend and our inspiration.”
Everton announced the news of Kenwright’s death in a tweet shared on Tuesday evening
They joined a line of fans who had already left flowers outside the stadium.
Everton continued to make gestures towards Kenwright and players held a minute’s silence before their training session on Wednesday.
The club released a picture of players standing with their arms behind their backs while a picture of Kenwright was visible in front of them.
In a full statement on Kenwright’s death, his company said: “After a long battle with his illness, Bill passed away peacefully last night surrounded by his family and loved ones.”
“Bill was driven by his passions and dedicated his life to them; his deep love of theatre, film, music and his beloved Everton and the families that founded them. He has impacted the lives of thousands, whether by launching careers or through his unending loyalty, generosity and unwavering friendship and support.
Everton showed their players observing a minute’s silence for Kenwright before training
“During his time as majority shareholder and chairman of Everton FC, Bill led the club through a period of unprecedented change in English football.” We will remember him with great love and admiration – the shows will of course go on as he would have wished , and his tremendous legacy will endure.
“A celebration of Bill’s life and career will be announced in due course.” “We ask for privacy and respect for Bill’s family and friends at this very difficult time.”
As tributes came from across the football world, Everton released a statement saying they were mourning the death of the man who had been on the board since 1989, while rivals from across the city sent a heartfelt message of condolence.
“Rest in peace, Bill Kenwright.” The Reds wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “The thoughts of everyone at Liverpool FC are with Bill’s family, friends and everyone at Everton.”
Anfield legend and Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher also expressed his sadness at the news, saying: “It’s really sad news.”
“A great Evertonian who served and loved his club to the last detail.” I will never forget his and Everton’s support every year around the Hillsborough memorial. RIP invoice.
Kenwright was last pictured at Everton’s game against Liverpool on February 13 this year
Kenwright sold his majority stake in Everton to Farhad Moshiri in 2016 but remained chairman
Birmingham City manager and former Everton star Wayne Rooney praised a “great man” in his statement to Kenwright. Rooney burst onto the scene as a youngster and thrilled the Goodison Park supporters. He was keen to highlight the former chairman’s influence on his development.
“Devastated to hear the sad news about Bill Kenwright,” he said. “I have known Bill since I was a teenager and he has had a huge influence on me as a person and my career.” Great man and a great inspiration. “Thoughts are with Bill’s family and friends.”
Kenwright struck up a love affair with the Toffees at a young age, inspired by his idol, center forward Dave Hickson. After taking a place on the board in 1989, he was appointed deputy chairman after buying a 68 per cent majority stake in the club from Peter Johnson in 1999.
He succeeded Sir Phillip Carter as Everton chairman in 2004. A year later, the Toffees secured a place in the Champions League qualification under the leadership of coach David Moyes.
He was convinced to stay in the role earlier this year by Moshiri, to whom Kenwright sold his stake in 2016.