PFA saddened by passing of Jim Smith

Jim Smith

Former Derby County, Oxford United & Portsmouth manager Jim Smith has passed away.

Smith spent the majority of his playing career in the lower leagues but went on to manage nine different clubs.

He was an expert at achieving club promotion, helping Oxford United, Colchester United and Birmingham City to climb divisions.

He is regarded as a legend at Oxford where he had three spells in charge, guiding the club from Division Three to Division One with back-to-back league titles in the 80s before returning in 2006.

Among his career highlights were a League Cup final appearance with Queens Park Rangers in 1986 and promotion to the Premier League with Derby in 1996.

Smith managed Newcastle United for a time and also had assistant manager spells at Coventry City, Portsmouth and Southampton.

PFA chief-executive Gordon Taylor OBE said, “God bless Jim Smith and sincere condolences to all his family.

“A no nonsense Yorkshire man who loved life and loved football.

“I loved playing for him after he bought me from Birmingham and Dave Wagstaffe from Wolves for Blackburn on deadline day March ' 76.

“He deservedly went on to have a very successful career in management.

“Great company great humour great character! He will be sadly missed by all who knew him but never forgotten! R.I.P.“

The thoughts and condolences of everyone at the PFA are with Jim’s family and friends.