The former manager led the Sky Blues to FA Cup glory in 1987, having earlier spent several years as a player with the club, and also managed Hereford United
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John Sillett has died at the age of 85, his family have announced in a statement.
A statement from the Sillett family read: “Obviously the family are really saddened by Dad’s passing but we are all so proud of him and what he achieved.
The statement added: “His ability to spot things tactically, change them during a game and enhance the abilities of players was top class, the respect he had from top people in the game and the kind words we have already received already underline the high regard in which he was held by the football world.
“Dad will be remembered for his FA Cup win but he also guided Coventry and Hereford to their highest League positions as well as taking Coventry to a League Cup semi-final. He had the ability to galvanise and gel teams – a skill quite rare.”
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Southampton-born Sillett was a full-back who began his career at Chelsea in 1954.
He played over 100 games for Chelsea and won the First Division title at Stamford Bridge in the 1954-55 season.
Sillett later played for Coventry and Plymouth before moving into management at Hereford.
He returned to Hereford for a second spell between 1991 and 1992 after leading Coventry to the only major honour in their 138-year history.
Coventry cup winner David Phillips paid tribute to Sillett on Twitter.
Former Wales international Phillips said: “Truly a sad day as the great John Sillett has passed away. A man of greatness who along with George (Curtis) brought the city of Coventry their greatest sporting moment in 87.
“I will miss him as we all will. God Bless you. Thoughts are with Jean, Neil and the rest of the family.”
Former Coventry defender Dave Busst also paid tribute to Sillett, saying: “Respected in football and total gentleman off the pitch …always had time to say hello and chat …RIP John you gave so many people from Coventry had the best day of there life in 87 legend”.
Coventry City offered a tribute of their own, saying the club was “devastated” to learn of his death.
“‘Snoz’ will forever be loved and remembered by Sky Blues fans and all who met him, who will remember a larger-than-life character who loved football and Coventry City,” the club’s statement read.
“A hugely respected and loved figure in the game, John Sillett’s name is indelibly etched into Coventry City’s history, and the thoughts and condolences of everyone at Coventry City Football Club and of the whole Sky Blue community are with John’s family and friends at this very sad time.”