Football community reacts to Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha's death

Leicester City's chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha was among five people killed when their helicopter crashed and burst into flames in the Premier League side's stadium car park moments after taking off from the pitch on Oct 28, 2018. PHOTO: AFP

(REUTERS) - Effusive tributes from the football community poured in for Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in the wake of the billionaire's death in a helicopter crash on Saturday (Oct 27). Here are some of the words offered up by Leicester players past and present, fans and football's global leaders:

English Premier League executive chairman Richard Scudamore in a statement: "Vichai was a gentleman who graced the game with his civility and charm and we will miss him enormously. His impact on Leicester - the football club and city - will be remembered forever."

Leicester City captain Wes Morgan: "Absolutely heartbroken and devastated regarding the news of our chairman. A man that was loved and adored..."

Leicester City and Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel: "You changed football. Forever! You gave hope to everyone that the impossible was possible, not just to our fans but to fans all over the world in any sport!"

Leicester City's Austria defender Christian Fuchs tweeted a photo of himself with a smiling Vichai and the words "THANK YOU".

Leicester City and England defender Ben Chilwell: "I can't believe it. I'm heartbroken to hear that no-one survived the crash yesterday. Vichai was one of the best people you could wish to meet, making you happy made him happy, he was always smiling and laughing. What he did for not just this football club but for Leicester as a city is incredible. He bought us all together."

Leicester City's England defender Harry Maguire: "Words can't describe how I feel. A truly great, kind loving man who will missed so much by everyone."

Leicester and England Under-21 midfielder James Maddison: "Devastated and heartbroken at the news that no one survived the helicopter crash yesterday. Life isn't fair sometimes. A wonderful thoughtful man who lived and breathed Leicester City Football Club. Rest in Peace Boss".

Liverpool and Egypt forward Mohamed Salah: "A truly sad day for football."

Leicester's opponents on Saturday West Ham United: "We would like to send our sincere condolences to the family of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at this sad and tragic time. His immense contribution to Leicester City FC, the city of Leicester and English football will never be forgotten. Our condolences also go to the other families affected by the tragedy."

Fifa president Gianni Infantino: "Fifa extends its deepest sympathies to their families & friends & to the many football fans for whom Vichai was an integral member of the Foxes family."

Uefa president Aleksander Ceferin: "Uefa and European football are deeply saddened to hear of the tragic deaths of the owner of Leicester City, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, and the other four people who lost their lives. We extend our deepest sympathy to Mr Srivaddhanaprabha's family and friends, and to Leicester City at this sad time."

World snooker No. 1 and Leicester City fan Mark Selby after his first round match at the International Championship tournament in China: "I wasn't there in person but mentally with what happened with the football club and the helicopter going down with the people on board, it was a tough day. He has done wonders for the club and put Leicester on the map. I was fortunate to meet him a fair few times... a great great guy."

Leicester City forward Jamie Vardy: "Struggling to find the right words. But to me you are legend, an incredible man who had the biggest heart, the soul of Leicester City Football Club. Thank you for everything you did for me, my family and our club. I will truly miss you."

Australian champions Sydney FC, one of many clubs - big and small - around the world who posted messages of condolence: "Everyone at @SydneyFC would like to pass on their condolences to @LCFC and everyone affected by yesterday's terrible events. Keeping you all in our thoughts."

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