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A fine Scotsman

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On June 15, 2023, former Manchester United and Scotland defender Gordon McQueen died aged 70. McQueen during his playing days, won the FA Cup with Manchester United in 1983, and before that was a part of the rising Leeds side in Europe.

After his death, his daughter Hayley McQueen – a Sky Sports News presenter – posted a picture on her social media of her family with a caption describing how they are “beyond heartbroken” to announce the death of their “wonderful dad”.

It wasn’t just his daughter, but thousand others who paid their respects to the Scottish legend after his death was announced. The tall and broad central defender who was born in Ayrshire, began his professional career after initially working as a labourer in steel factories.

While he was the star of the Leeds United team that were making headlines in Europe, his transfer to Man Utd caused dismay among the Peacocks. He moved to Old Trafford in 1978 for £495,000 – making him Britain’s most expensive football player at the time.

 

Gordon McQueen Man Utd & Leeds career

Gordon McQueen was one of the best central defenders of his era with his flamboyant style of defending popular among the fans. He was so good that he led his Scottish national team and swapped Leeds for bitter rivals Man Utd and got away with it.

A brilliant no-nonsense defender who had an effective career with St Mirren Leeds, and Manchester United, before calling it a time at Seiko in Hong Kong.

He was a popular figure in the dressing room, no matter where he went and was always quickest to the punchline. This helped him in many ways to settle but that also came with consequences. The Scottish legend was also named Player of the Season twice at Leeds, who were at that time on top of their game in Europe in the 1970s.

McQueen would later in his peak end up signing for rivals Manchester United in a controversial transfer in the late 70s. With his departure, Leeds too fell into mediocrity, while McQueen’s stock only kept on rising at Old Trafford under then-manager Dave Sexton.

The Scottish legend could look back on a fine career at the top level. Aside from club football, he was capped 30 times for Scotland.

 

Gordon McQueen’s cause of death

The first signs of his fading health came in 2011, which would blight his final decade, when he was diagnosed with cancer of the Larynx. During McQueen’s treatment of cancer, he lost his voice during the process.

A stroke in 2015 followed and Mcqueen was diagnosed with Vascular Dementia in 2021. His family reiterated that this was because from all his heading of the ball repeatedly during his playing days.

McQueen’s family worked with the charity ”Head for Change’ and said that Gordon wanted current and future footballers to be educated on the link between heading and dementia. Since then, laws and rules have been passed and implemented by football authorities to ration heading in youth and senior football.

The former Scotland, Manchester United and Leeds central defender died at the age of 70 in 2023 after what his family termed “a very cruel battle against dementia”.

Arnold Lewis
A hardcore Chelsea fan, who is often found playing football on the weekends. He has an exceptional voice and his rendition of old Hindi classic songs will make your heart melt. He is the man with the funky hair.

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