Bell made 501 appearances for City over a 13-year spell with the club; City named stand at Etihad Stadium after him in 2004
Former England and Manchester City midfielder Colin Bell has died at the age of 74 after a short illness.
Bell made 501 appearances for City over a 13-year spell with the club, winning the First Division title, FA Cup, League Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup and scoring 153 goals during his time in Manchester.
He also scored nine goals in 48 games for England and was part of the 1970 World Cup squad.
Manchester City’s players will walk out in retro shirts bearing Bell’s number eight on them for Wednesday night’s game against Manchester United.
Known as Colin The King, in 2004 City fans voted to name a stand inside the Etihad Stadium after him and his name is still sung regularly at matches.
Manchester City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak led the tributes, saying: “Colin Bell will always be remembered as one of Manchester City’s greatest players and the very sad news today of his passing will affect everybody connected to our club.
“I am fortunate to be able to speak regularly to his former manager and teammates, and it’s clear to me that Colin was a player held in the highest regard by all those who had the privilege of playing alongside him or seeing him play. The passage of time does little to erase the memories of his genius.
“The fact that we have a stand at the Etihad Stadium named after Colin speaks volumes about the importance of his contribution to this club.
“Colin was incredibly humble and a modest and understated man with an obvious inner strength of character. He was clearly comfortable with who he was and what he had achieved in the game. For the rest of us, there is always the thought of what might have been if injury had not affected his career. Undoubtedly more trophies for City and far more than the 49 England caps to his name.
“Our Club has lost a true great. Everyone’s thoughts and best wishes are with Colin’s family.”