Portsmouth mourn death of former England, Ipswich, Arsenal and Plymouth striker Paul Mariner

Pompey are mourning the death of Paul Mariner, who has passed away at the age of 68.

Saturday, 10th July 2021, 8:58 am
Updated Saturday, 10th July 2021, 9:37 am
Paul Mariner, centre, celebrates Pompey promotion at the end of the 1986-87 season at Guildhall Square with team-mates Mick Quinn and Mick Kennedy.

Mariner died yesterday (July 9) following a battle with brain cancer.

A statement from Mariner's family said: 'We regret to inform you that Paul passed away peacefully on July 9 surrounded by his family after a brief battle with brain cancer.

‘We would like to thank all the people who came to see him through his illness for their support and for the messages that were sent to him, they meant a great deal to him and us.

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‘A special thank you must go to the NHS and the unbelievable care he received when he most needed it and for that we, as a family, will be forever in your debut.

‘Paul lived a full life and was fortunate enough to represent a group of fantastic football clubs, as well as his country, all of which meant the world to him.

‘Anyone who knew Paul will attest to his fantastic sense of humour, his passion for life and for his work.

‘He will be sorely missed by everyone who was ever around him and by those most close to him.’

Mariner played for the Blues between 1986-1988, scoring nine goals in 66 appearances for the club.

The centre-forward was part of Alan Ball's Gremlins that finished as runners-up in Division Two 1986-87 season. It earned Pompey promotion to the top flight, etching hims into Fratton folklore.

Mariner started his career at Chorley before he caught the eye of Plymouth Argyle and moved to the Devon outfit in 1973.

He was purchased by Ipswich three years later for £220,000 and would become one of the greatest players in Portman Road history.

Mariner was part of Sir Bobby Robson's FA Cup-winning side of 1978, as well as helping the Tractor Boys claim the Uefa Cup in 1981.

Mariner was handed his England debut 1977 while at Ipswich. He'd go on to win 35 caps in total, scoring 13 goals, and featured in the 1980 European Championship and 1982 World Cup.

Mariner left Portman Road for Arsenal in 1984 before joining Pompey two years later.

After his Fratton Park exit, he made the switch to Australian side Wollongong City before heading to America to first represent Albany City before ending his playing career with San Francisco Bay.

After hanging up his boots, Mariner would later move into coaching. He became assistant manager at MLS outfit New England Revolution between 2004-2009 before he landed the top job at Plymouth.

Following his Home Park exit in 2010, he'd take charge of Toronto FC two years later for a brief period.