Former Newcastle United manager Joe Kinnear passes away

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The news of the sad passing of the former Magpies manager was confirmed on Sunday afternoon.

The family of former Newcastle United manager Joe Kinnear have confirmed the former Magpies boss has passed away at the age of 77.

The former Tottenham Hotspur and Republic of Ireland defender is arguably best known for his time in charge of Wimbledon as he led a Dons side containing the likes of Vinny Jones, John Fashanu and Hans Segers to a sixth placed finish during the 1993/94 Premier League season. Their performances throughout a remarkable season saw Kinnear land three manager of the month awards as his side finished the campaign ahead of the likes of Liverpool, Everton and former club Spurs.

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After departing Wimbledon in 1999, Kinnear went on to spend time in charge of Luton Town and Nottingham Forest before ending a four-year absence from the dugout by replacing Kevin Keegan following the controversial end to the Magpies legend’s second spell in charge of Newcastle. Kinnear’s reign was perhaps more memorable for his off-field statements and comments over his links to then owner Mike Ashley as United slid towards relegation - but he had stepped back from the role before the Magpies slid into the Championship after suffering heart problems before a 3-2 win at West Bromwich Albion in February 2009.

Kinnear officially left St James Park when his contract came to an end in May of the same year but made a shock return to Tyneside in June 2013 when he was named as the club’s director of football. Following the sale of key midfielder Yohan Cabaye to PSG and the loan signing of Luuk de Jong, Kinnear resigned from the position just days after the end of the January 2014 transfer window.

That proved to be the end of Kinnear’s involvement in football and it was confirmed the veteran boss had been diagnosed with early onset vascular dementia in 2015. Speaking in 2021, Kinnear’s wife Bonnie gave an insight into his battle with the illness, telling the Telegraph:  "He started to get moody - a bit depressed. I thought, 'This isn't right’. "Then he got aggressive in certain situations. It just wasn't Joe. It was a problem trying to get him to see somebody but we eventually got him to a doctor and he was diagnosed in 2015. They classed it as early onset vascular dementia and, since then, he has just deteriorated. He's in the late stage. It is heartbreaking to see how someone can change. "He was larger than life. He loved people. He'd walk in a pub, buy everyone a drink, tell funny stories and be the life and soul of the party."

The Kinnear family have now confirmed the former Magpies boss passed away on Sunday evening as they issued a statement saying: “We are sad to announce that Joe passed away peacefully this afternoon surrounded by his family. Joe, who was 77, had been suffering from dementia having been diagnosed in 2015.”

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