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20 March 2021

Peter Lorimer, Leeds’ all-time record goalscorer, dies aged 74

20 March 2021

Leeds are mourning all-time great Peter Lorimer following his death at the age of 74.

The Elland Road club’s record goalscorer and former Scotland international died on Saturday after a long illness.

A statement issued on Leeds’ official website said: “It is with great sadness, Leeds United has learned of the passing of club legend Peter Lorimer this morning at the age of 74 following a long-term illness.

“Peter made a huge 705 appearances for the Whites over two spells and is the club’s record goalscorer, having netted 238 times in all competitions.

“Peter’s contribution to Leeds United will never be forgotten and his passing leaves another huge hole in the Leeds United family.

“He will always remain a club icon and his legacy at Elland Road will live on.

“Our thoughts are naturally with Peter’s wife Sue and the rest of his family at this difficult time. Rest in peace, Peter.”

Peter Lorimer (PA Wire)

News of Lorimer’s illness emerged last month when it was revealed he was being cared for at a hospice.

The Scot, who at his peak was renowned to possess one of the most powerful shots in the game, wrote himself into the club’s folklore during a trophy-laden career in West Yorkshire.

Having been spotted as a youngster in is home town of Dundee, he was snapped up by Leeds and handed a senior debut at the age of 15 years and 289 days against Southampton in September 1962. He remains the youngest player to have represented the club at senior level.

Variously dubbed “Hot Shot” and “Lasher”, he was an integral member of the team assembled by Don Revie, which also included Jack Charlton, Billy Bremner, Johnny Giles and Eddie Gray, which rose to prominence at home and in Europe during the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Peter Lorimer went to the 1974 World Cup finals with Scotland (PA Archive)

His trophy haul included two first division titles, FA and League Cup wins, two Inter-Cities Fairs Cups and the Charity Shield, and he had a goal controversially ruled out in the 1975 European Cup final as Leeds went down 2-0 to Bayern Munich.

In addition, he won 21 caps and scored four goals for his country, who he represented at the 1974 World Cup finals in Germany.

Lorimer left Leeds in 1979 for spells with Toronto Blizzard and Vancouver Whitecaps.

He returned to England with York and then in 1983 arrived back at Elland Road to make a further 87 appearances and add 19 goals to his tall, before heading for Whitby and ultimately into retirement.

The last 12 months have seen Leeds lose Lorimer and fellow club greats Charlton, Norman Hunter and Trevor Cherry. Gray was a part of that side and also Lorimer’s best friend.

“As well as being a great player, goal scorer, he was a great lad,” he told Football Focus. “He was my room-mate for 12 years, all over Europe, up and down the country.

“He was a great lad, it’s a sad day for me and my team-mates that are still here, we’ve had a terrible year.

“I used to go over and see him every weekend before the lockdown, have a chat, reminisce, still enjoying watching the football club.

“The sad thing for Leeds United, there’ll be a lot of fans crying with the passing of Peter and they can’t go and watch their beloved club either, the club Peter loved so much.”

Post-playing, Lorimer remained a prominent figure at the club he had served with such distinction, working as an ambassador and attending home and away games.

The news of his death came hours after Leeds’ 2-1 Premier League win at Fulham on Friday night.

Club chairman Andrea Radrizzani said on Twitter: “Another Legend left us. My prayers with the family. It has been an honour to meet you and host you at Elland Road, your home.”

Skipper Liam Cooper posted: “Fly High Peter. A legend that we all aspire to be like. Sending all our love to Peters family”.

Midfielder Stuart Dallas, who played at Craven Cottage, tweeted: “After the high of last night, we learn of such sad news this morning. My thoughts are with Peter’s family and friends at this difficult time.”

The Scottish Football Association said it was “deeply saddened” at his death, while the English Football League called him a “true legend of the game”.

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