Former England Manager Terry ‘El Tel’ Venables Dies at 80

Terry Venables, who led England to the Euro 96 semi-finals and Barcelona to the 1986 European Cup final, died on Sunday at the age of 80, according to his family.

“We are totally devastated by the loss of a wonderful husband and father who passed away peacefully yesterday after a long illness,” the family said.

“We would ask that privacy be given at this incredibly sad time to allow us to mourn the loss of this lovely man who we were so lucky to have had in our lives.”

Venables won over English football fans with a great run to the final four of the Euro 96 tournament, which England hosted, including a stunning 4-1 thumping of the Netherlands.

However, they were defeated on penalties by eventual victors Germany in the semi-finals.

Venables — affectionately known as ‘El Tel’ — also had success with a Tottenham Hotspur team that included the gifted but volatile Paul Gascoigne – they won the FA Cup in 1991.

Venables also won the trophy as a player for the club in 1967.

His career at Spurs ended in bitter squabbles after he was designated CEO and clashed with then-owner Alan Sugar.

The club said they would pay tribute to his memory by holding a minute’s applause ahead of their Premier League fixture with Aston Villa on Sunday.

“The club is extremely saddened to learn of the passing of former player and manager Terry Venables,” read their statement.

“Our deepest condolences are with Terry’s friends and family at this incredibly difficult time.

“In tribute, we shall hold a minute’s applause prior to kick-off and our players will wear black armbands during this afternoon’s fixture against Aston Villa.

“Rest in peace, Terry.”

Gary Lineker, whom Venables signed for Barcelona from Everton in 1986 and then brought to Tottenham in 1989 after he took the job, paid homage to “a friend.”

“Devastated to hear that Terry Venables has died. The best, most innovative coach that I had the privilege and pleasure of playing for,” he wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

“He was much more, though, than just a great manager, he was vibrant, he was charming, he was witty, he was a friend.

“He’ll be hugely missed. Sending love and condolences to Yvette and the family. RIP Terry.”

Venables also had spells in charge of other clubs including Queens Park Rangers — who he took as a second tier club to the 1982 FA Cup final — and also Australia.

The League Managers Association also paid tribute to him.

“The LMA is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of LMA member and former LMA President Terry Venables,” said LMA chief executive Richard Bevan.

“Our thoughts are very much with Yvette and all of Terry’s family at this time.”

Leave a Reply