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1 year ago By Cliff Emberlin

It is with great sadness and indeed shock to announce that former Portslade Athletic stalwart, Keith Stoneham, passed away at the weekend.

Keith had been battling with cancer since earlier this year.

Those who remember Keith will recall a totally committed midfielder/centre back who played most of his football for the 1st X1 for many seasons. In many ways he was any Team Managers ideal squad member, completely reliable and always gave 100%. It is hard to imagine him playing and not being fully committed.

It is fair to say, and I am sure he would not mind me saying this, that sometimes occasionally he allowed his commitment to get the better of him. When he decided to make a tackle there was no stopping him whatever the circumstances. He was prone to picking up the odd disciplinary point although he got away with a fair few by helping his opponent back to an upright position after unceremoniously disturbing their equilibrium. On the touchline you could see the tackle coming, the opposition were not always so lucky.

For our older members, think of a cross between Norman Hunter and Roy Keane, and you get the picture. The sort of player you would rather play with than against. All that said, he was a very good footballer and a great team player.

Keith worked (over 30 years) for Legal and General who had teams in the Brighton League and they often tried to tempt him away but he stayed loyal to our club. Before he moved away through his job, he served as General Secretary soon after I became Chairman. He brought his business skills to that role and was typically efficient and organised. He certainly made sure I didn’t get away with glossing over any outstanding issues, often pulling me up to ensure matters arising at meetings were either resolved or at least progressed.

Very sad news indeed and we send our sincere condolences to his wife, Helen, his children friends and family at this difficult time.

Updated 22:12 - 24 Oct 2017 by Cliff Emberlin

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