Justin Edinburgh: Football fans leave tributes after Orient manager’s death

Emotional tributes have been paid to Leyton Orient manager Justin Edinburgh at the club’s ground after his death at the age of 49.

Flowers, football shirts and messages of support were left for the former Tottenham defender outside the stadium and in the home dugout after his death following a cardiac arrest was announced on Saturday.

Many fans were in tears as they stood inside the Breyer Group Stadium, also known as Brisbane Road, where Edinburgh had helped the club secure promotion back to the Football League just weeks earlier.

One O’s fan left a note reading: “Dear Justin, thanks for putting Leyton Orient back on the map.”

Another read: “Thank you for making me an Orient fan. RIP. Jacob, 6 yrs.”

Justin Edinburgh Tributes
A tribute from a six-year-old fan outside the Breyer Group Stadium (Stephen Jones/PA)

Orient captain Jobi McAnuff was among the players, former teammates and friends who posted tributes on social media.

“Yesterday we lost our leader, a fantastic manager and a truly great man,” he tweeted.

“A man who inspired so many of us with his drive, passion and sheer desire to win, a man who had so much love for this game and even more for his family, my heart goes out to them at this tragic time.”

Orient defender Josh Coulson wrote: “Heart broken right now. Devastated. Gaffer you made me fall back in love with the game. And to be a champion with you will stay with me forever. Rest well up there.”

Edinburgh began his playing career at Southend before spending a decade with Spurs, with whom he won the FA Cup and League Cup and remained closely associated after his playing career.

Days before his death he had been in Madrid to watch Tottenham’s Champions League final defeat by Liverpool.

Soccer – FA Cup 1991 – Final Match – Tottenham Hotspur v Nottingham Forest – Wembley Stadium, London
Edinburgh and team-mates celebrating Spurs’ 1991 FA Cup win (PA)

Former Spurs teammate Gary Lineker tweeted: “Deeply saddened to hear that Justin Edinburgh has passed away. He was an excellent coach and a terrific fullback who was a delight to share a dressing room with and have as a teammate. Thoughts are with his family. #RipJustin.”

And a message from a Spurs fan outside Orient’s stadium read: “Hugged you in Madrid at the CL (Champions League) final and saw you play many, many times. Thank you for the FA Cup in 1991 and the League Cup in ‘99.

“You’ll be truly missed by everyone at Spurs. You did a great job at all the clubs you’ve managed, most recently LOFC.

“The world is a smaller place without you.”

Leyton Orient v Braintree Town – Vanarama National League – Breyer Group Stadium
Edinburgh led Orient to the National League title in his first full season in charge (PA)

After his playing days, Edinburgh managed a host of lower and non-league clubs, leading both Newport and Orient to promotions from the National League.

Edinburgh had recently said he regarded Orient’s promotion after 18 months in charge as his greatest achievement in football.

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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