John Giles, Freeman of Dublin

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One of Ireland’s all-time great footballers and former manager John Giles has been conferred the Freedom of Dublin City at a ceremony held in the Mansion House in the capital.

Giles made 59 appearances for Ireland, whom he also managed and was credited with introducing a new professionalism to the international set-up. He won an FA Cup with Manchester United, and two-league titles and the cup with Leeds. Giles also player-managed in the League of Ireland with Shamrock Rovers winning the FAI Cup.

He was named in the greatest Leeds XI of all time and the Football League included him on its list of 100 League legends. The much-loved pundit was also named Ireland’s most outstanding player as part of UEFA’s jubilee celebrations.

“John has been a true leader in his sporting life and has achieved greatness through his skill both as a player and as a manager. By giving this award the city is acknowledging their unique contribution,” said Dublin Lord Mayor Christy Burke.

Long-time friend and fellow RTE panelist Eamon Dunphy previously said: “He was a legend on the streets as I was growing up and he became something very rare — a prodigy who goes on to achieve greatness as a footballer…As long as football is played in this country, he’ll be remembered. He’s a great man, not a good man.”

Giles was bestowed the honour along with homelessness campaigner Brother Kevin Crowley and joins a selct list including Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi, U2, and Brian O’ Driscoll.

Main pic: @RTEArchives Images: @LordMayorDublin

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