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Former Man City boss Malcolm Allison passes away

Former Manchester City boss Malcolm Allison has died aged 83, the club announced today.

The club paid tribute to 'Big Mal' on its website, describing him as "flamboyant, brilliant and larger than life".

"Malcolm will be sorely missed by everyone at the club and beyond," said the statement on City's website.

Allison joined the Blues in 1965 as assistant manager to Joe Mercer, before taking up the top job in 1972. He also had a spell back at the club from 1979 to 1980.

As assistant to Mercer, Allison helped City win the First Division (1967-68), the FA Cup (1969), the League Cup (1970) and the European Cup Winners' Cup (1970) in the club's most successful period.

He also had spells in charge of Crystal Palace, Plymouth Argyle and Middlesbrough in a long management career.

City legend Mike Summerbee paid tribute to his former boss. "Malcolm changed football by making us train like athletes, in that respect he was ahead of his time and he was a great tactician as well. He was also one of the lads - in effect he was the twelfth player from the sidelines but he knew how to crack the whip and we respected him," he said.

"He was a great psychologist; he knew how to handle me and how to get more out of me. He did the same for Colin Bell, Francis Lee, Neil Young and all of that great side."

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