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Last Updated: Friday, 23 February 2007, 17:33 GMT
Stoke's record scorer passes away
Stoke City 1972
Ritchie was a member of the victorious 1972 League Cup squad
Stoke City's all-time leading goalscorer John Ritchie has died at the age of 65.

Ritchie had been living in a nursing home after suffering poor health for several years.

His scoring record for the Potters stood at 176 goals in 343 games during two spells with the club, from 1962 to 1966 and 1969 to 1975.

Stoke manager Tony Pulis said: "He was a top, top player. It is tragic for a person to pass away so young."

Pulis added: "Everyone here at Stoke City will remember John for what he was, a great player for this club."

Ritchie was in the Potters attack when Stoke beat Chelsea in the 1972 League Cup final at Wembley.

The Kettering-born forward's career was eventually brought to an end by a double leg fracture.

A minute's silence is likely to be held before Stoke's next game against Barnsley on Monday evening.

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