Jon Economou

Tributes have been paid to ‘brave’ former Bristol City midfielder Jon Economou, who died after a six-year battle with cancer.

Jon who was born in Holloway and attended Holloway School. He played 65 times for Bristol City in the 1980s, and died on October 11 2019, a fortnight shy of his 58th birthday.

The father-of-two, who lived in Portishead, leaves behind 'adored' daughters Hayley and Gemma and partner of seven years Mandi.

Loved ones, friends and former teammates all paid tribute to 'a really nice bloke' who will be 'badly missed by so many people'.

In 2013 he was diagnosed with a rare sarcoma, and underwent countless operations and procedures in a bid to defeat the disease - but he died peacefully in his sleep after a brave battle.

Mandi said: "I was so lucky to have met Jon. "He brought me so much happiness in the seven years we were together.

"He was the bravest person I have ever met and always had a big smile on his face, even though he was sometimes in so much pain, he never wanted us to know, he fought with dignity right until the end. My heart is broken."

Jon signed as an apprentice aged 16 for Bristol City and at 17 he was awarded a three-year professional contract. He struggled to gain a first team place until fate intervened in February 1982, when eight senior players, the Ashton Gate Eight, tore up their contracts as a necessary part of saving the club in its financial crisis.

Jon made his League debut in the next game at home against Fulham. One year later Jon recalled: “The Fulham game remains one of my most memorable. The atmosphere was fantastic and the thrill was only matched by my first league goal against Gillingham later in the season.”

Jon would go on to make 62 league appearances for Bristol City - three as a substitute - scoring three goals. After leaving Ashton Gate, Jon joined up with former team mate Gerry Gow, then managing at Yeovil Town, followed by Forest Green Rovers, Weston-super-Mare, Gloucester City, Minehead - then managed by another former teammate, Chris Garland - and Devizes Town.

Friend and sports writer Don Veale said "Not only was Jon a really nice bloke, he was also the bravest person I ever met." Jon's funeral was held at Bristol South Crematorium on October 31 2019.