Coleman and Dyche pay tribute to Bill Kenwright CBE

26 Oct 2023
Dyche, Coleman

Everton captain and manager hail the influence of club chairman who passed away this week

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Sean Dyche and Seamus Coleman have each given an emotional tribute to Bill Kenwright CBE after the Everton chairman passed away this week at the age of 78.

The Everton manager and captain laid a wreath next to the Dixie Dean statue outside Goodison Park as both gave their thanks to a man who oversaw 19 seasons as chairman.

Dyche, Coleman

Dyche said on the club's official website: "His influence in bringing me to Everton in the first place was important and I have nothing but gratitude and respect for his unwavering support of myself, the staff and our players.

"It was a pleasure to share the moment of reaching our objective last season with him – a moment I know he felt so strongly about after such an arduous season, on and off the pitch.

"I first met the chairman during my tenure as Burnley manager where, in passing, he would always take the time to say hello, introduce himself and be extremely respectful to me and, at the time, Burnley.

"Then, when he and [director of football] Kevin Thelwell reached out to me and I eventually joined Everton, I was fortunate enough to spend more time with him and get to know him on a more personal level.

"His story - a boyhood supporter who went on to become chairman - is something so rare in the modern game, especially at the top level.

"He always believed in Everton and stood by the club, even in the toughest times. He was steadfast until the very end."

See: Dyche's full farewell letter

Everton captain Coleman, who has been with the Toffees for almost 15 years, has also given a touching tribute to Kenwright.

"Bill Kenwright was more than a chairman to me. He was a friend," Coleman said on the club's website.

"The way he treated me and my family when I first came to the club from Ireland was incredible.

"It meant the world to us and was a massive part of me settling in and having a career with Everton. And I know that I am far from being the only player to be able to say that."

See: Coleman's full farewell letter

Everton have given supporters the opportunity to write messages of their own in their book of condolence, which is available in the Park End reception at Goodison Park from 10am-4pm each day.

Fans can also write a condolence message in their digital book. 

See: Everton's book of condolence

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