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Former Cardiff City and Newport County manager Len Ashurst dies

Former Cardiff City and Newport County manager Len Ashurst has died at the age of 82.

The Liverpool-born boss managed the Bluebirds for two spells, between 1982 and 1984 and again between 1989 and 1991, while he was in charge at Rodney Parade during the most successful period in the club’s history, from 1978 to 1982.

As a player he represented Hartlepool and Sunderland, turning out for the Black Cats more than 400 times over a career that spanned 19 years.

He moved into management after hanging up his boots, overseeing affairs at Hartlepool, Gillingham, Sheffield Wednesday, Newport, Cardiff, Sunderland, Al Wakrah in Qatar, Pahang in Malaysia and Weymouth.

Among Ashurst’s managerial achievements were promotions with the Bluebirds and Exiles, winning the Welsh Cup with the latter and taking them to the quarter-finals of the European Cup Winners’ Cup.

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Cardiff were among a host of clubs paying tribute to him on Saturday.

“We are saddened to learn of the passing of former Cardiff City manager, Len Ashurst. Our thoughts are with Len’s family and friends at this sad time. Rest in peace,” the club posted online.

County followed suit with another message of sympathy.

“Newport County AFC is saddened to learn of the passing of former manager Len Ashurst. Our thoughts are with Len’s family and friends at this difficult time,” they posted.

Sunderland, a team with which Ashurst had legend status, wrote: “We are immensely saddened to learn of the passing of Sunderland AFC legend Len Ashurst. Our thoughts are with Len’s family and friends at this incredibly sad time. Rest in peace, Len.”

A minute’s applause will be held ahead of Sunderland’s match with Bolton this afternoon.

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