The former captain of Wycombe Wanderers has said Bill Turnbull was “one of the best men you could wish to meet”.
The broadcaster, who has died aged 66, was an avid supporter of the football club and on many occasions commentated and was seen at their matches at Adams Park.
Matt Bloomfield told the PA news agency of Turnbull: “Bill was just one of those real special men who I was lucky enough to get to know.
“He was obviously at the top of his game as a professional and just a real, real special human to get to know. He always made you feel comfortable in his presence, in his company, he always wanted to make you laugh and enjoy it.
“He was just a real, real good person, a massive supporter, our most famous supporter, one of our biggest supporters and friend of the club.
“Then when I got to know him more, he invited my wife and my children, we went around for lunch a few times. He was there at our best moment at Wembley a couple of years ago when we got promoted to the Championship.
“So, he’s played a massive role in my time at Wycombe Wanderers and he was an absolute gentleman, and just one of the best men you could wish to meet, and I’m just so grateful that I got to know him so well over a number of years.”
Following this monumental match, the team played in the Championship for the first time but were relegated back to League One at the end of the season.
Bloomfield added that having the former BBC Breakfast presenter as an avid and long-term supporter of the club “meant everything”.
He told PA: “Because the amount of effort he gave to being a Wycombe Wanderers supporter, the amount of support he gave us through thick and thin, he was there for us whenever we needed him for his support.
“He would always support what we were trying to do as a football club and as a team, and he was vocal in that support, and he’d follow us and he’d do everything he possibly could to support us.
“His standing within the BBC and the career that he led, and the aura, just the aura that he had about him, and when he visited us he led a team building, a team development day a year or two ago, and he just had the lads in his hand, he could just conduct the audience however he wanted, he was just a special man who just had this presence and aura, and it meant as much to him to spend the day with the squad as it did for the squad to spend the day with him.
“So, it was a real mutual appreciation.
“We were just so lucky to have him as a friend of the club, as a supporter of the club, and as a personal friend. I’m so grateful that I got to know him so well.”
Following the news of Turnbull’s death, the football club shared a number of clips on Twitter showcasing his keen involvement with the team, including his enthusiastic commentary on a host of Wycombe games.
It also posted a collection of video clips of him on the pitch warming up the crowd ahead of a game as well as a feature he produced for Sky Sports in 2008 on why the Wanderers were his favourite team.