Muhammad Ali, perhaps the greatest sportsman of the 20th Century, died last night aged 74, and the world is in mourning today.
Liverpool as a city and people are no exception, and a quote from the boxer is doing the rounds on Merseyside today, which sums up his connection to the city.
Ali spoke to former ECHO journalist Brian Reade back in 2001, and Reade recalls: “After showing me a photo taken with The Beatles I told him I was from the same city . He came back in a flash: “Then you ain’t no fool, if you from Liverpool.”
“It reminded me of his mesmeric use of language when he was king.”
Scouse boxer Tony Bellew joined in the tributes, too.
“RIP Muhammad Ali. The greatest sporting icon of all time! A man who transcended boxing an put our sport on the map. His name will live FOREVER,” he said.
We’ve never written an article about the death of a sportsman outside of football, but with Ali, we felt the need to make an exception.
He inspired so many with his athletic brilliance and the courage he showed in his convictions, and it’ll be many a year before we see another of Ali’s ilk.