Former football manager Jim Smith dies aged 79

Smith also served as the League Managers’ Association’s chief executive. (Facebook pic/QPR FC)

LONDON: Former Queens Park Rangers, Derby and Portsmouth manager Jim Smith has died aged 79, English Championship club QPR announced Tuesday.

Smith also guided Birmingham City into the old First Division and had several stints at Oxford.

Nicknamed ‘the Bald Eagle’, he also managed Newcastle from 1988-1991 before steering Portsmouth to a 1992 FA Cup semifinal where they took Liverpool to a replay before losing on penalties after extra time.

Smith became a member of England’s League Managers’ Association’s Hall of Fame 1,000 club and served for a time as the organisation’s chief executive before returning to management and leading Derby into the Premier League.

“I have so many fond memories of Jim as a football manager but foremost as a friend,” said LMA chairman Howard Wilkinson.

“He was intelligent, passionate, determined, honest and always great fun to be with.”