Jun 082019
 

Justin Edinburgh

18 December 1969   –   8 June 2019

Leyton Orient manager Justin Edinburgh has died at the age of 49 – five days after suffering a cardiac arrest.

Edinburgh, who guided Orient back into the English Football League in 2018-19, had been taken to hospital on Monday.

“We are completely heartbroken by this tragedy,” Orient chairman Nigel Travis told the club’s website.

Edinburgh, who won the FA Cup as a Spurs player, managed Northampton Town, Gillingham and Newport County before moving to Orient in November 2017.

“All our thoughts and love are with the Edinburgh family and we know from the messages that have flooded into the club over the last week that the wider football world will share our sentiments,” added Travis.

“The success that Justin brought to Leyton Orient was incredible, but more importantly the impact he had on us all as a winner and a wonderful, inspirational human being will be his legacy and will stay with us forever.

“All our thoughts are with Justin’s wife Kerri and their children Charlie and Cydnie.”

After turning professional at Southend, Edinburgh – a left-back – spent a decade playing for Tottenham, making 258 appearances and winning the FA Cup in 1991 and League Cup in 1999 before moving to Portsmouth.

He became player-manager of non-league Billericay Town in 2003 before spells at Fisher Athletic and Rushden and Diamonds.

His managerial breakthrough came at Newport County, whom he led to promotion to League Two in 2013 having guided them to the FA Trophy final a year earlier.

A 23-month spell at Gillingham from January 2015 followed, before nine months at Northampton in 2016-2017.

He was appointed Orient boss in November of 2017, and led the club to 45 wins in his 82 games in charge.

Orient striker Macauley Bonne tweeted: “There are no words to describe the loss of our gaffer, our leader & inspiration. He brought us all together – we’re eternally grateful for everything you’ve done.”

Fellow forward James Alabi said he was “absolutely broken” while defender Jamie Turley said he was:”Devastated and lost for words at the loss of this great man. It was an honour to play for him. Truly an amazing and inspirational person in all aspects.”

Defender Marvin Ekpiteta tweeted he was “lost for words” while winger James Brophy posted: “A wonderful man, who had a positive impact on everyone he met no matter how much time you’d spent with him! Never be forgotten! Thank you for everything.”

BBC London’s Orient reporter Dave Victor tweeted: “Justin Edinburgh was a man of great integrity who commanded respect.

“Justin was a winner. His passion for the game he loved, together with his ability to inspire, enabled others to achieve so much.”