Celtic and Liverpool icon pays tribute to 'true icon of the game' Franz Beckenbauer

Beckenbauer died at the age of 78 on Tuesday and tributes have come flooding in for the two-time World Cup winner
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Celtic, Liverpool and Scotland icon Kenny Dalglish has led tributes in memory of German football legend Franz Beckenbauer following his death aged 78.

Nicknamed 'Der Kaiser' (The Emporer) and widely considered as one of the greatest players in the game's history, Beckenbauer steered West Germany to World Cup glory as captain in 1974 and again as manager in 1990. His family announced his sad passing in a statement on Tuesday evening.

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A classy central defender, who could also operate as a midfielder or attacking sweeper, won the European Cup three times with Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich and remains the only defender in football history to win the Ballon d'Or twice.

Franz Beckenbauer (left) presents Scotland's Kenny Dalglish with a trophy to commemorate his 100th capFranz Beckenbauer (left) presents Scotland's Kenny Dalglish with a trophy to commemorate his 100th cap
Franz Beckenbauer (left) presents Scotland's Kenny Dalglish with a trophy to commemorate his 100th cap

Dalglish, who famously crossed paths with Beckenbauer upon winning his 100th international cap for the Scots in 1986, posted a heartfelt tribute on social media.

He wrote: "It fills me with deep sadness to hear about the passing of Franz Beckenbauer, a true icon of the game. It was a privilege to share one of my proudest moments with him when he presented my 100th cap for Scotland. My thoughts are with him and his family at this time. RIP Der Kaiser."

A statement released by the Scottish FA read: "We are saddened to learn of the passing of Franz Beckenbauer. The former Germany player and manager won numerous honours - including lifting the 1976 European Cup at Hampden Park. He will be remembered as a legend of the game."

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Bayern Munich uploaded a number of Beckenbauer's career highlights during his long association at the club as a player and manager. A statement read: "The world of FC Bayern is no longer what it used to be - suddenly darker, quieter, poorer; The German record champions mourn Franz Beckenbauer, the unique "Emperor", without whom FC Bayern would never have become the club it is today. Rest in peace."

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, current CEO of Bayern and former teammate said: "I am deeply shocked. Franz Beckenbauer rewrote the history of German football and left a lasting impact on it. He was my captain at FC Bayern, my coach at the national team, our president at Bayern and in all of these roles he was not only successful but unique. As a personality, he impressed with his great respect for all people - because everyone was equal before Franz. German football is losing the greatest personality in its history. We will miss him more than painfully. Thank you for everything, dear Franz!"

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