Yesterday marked 20 years since David Rocastle passed away.
The Arsenal legend – who also playing for Leeds United and Chelsea, shocked everyone in the footballing world when his death - from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma – was announced. The life of the former England international was cut short, at 33-years-old, by a disease that couldn't be beaten, even by a man of seemingly endless courage.
Few Arsenal players of the modern era ever had the connection with supporters that David "Rocky" Rocastle had. The Lewisham-born star who joined Arsenal's academy in 1982, was always an inspirational fans’ favourite, as he balanced his unique blend of trickery and pace on the wing with a spirit that was way and above so many of his peers – at the time and since.
Two decades on since his passing and Rocastle's legacy is one of outright praise. A player loved by both fans and players alike, ‘Rocky’ was by all accounts the nicest man in English football, and the greatest tributes paid are from his peers – then and till today.
"Remember who you are, what you are, and who you represent," was his poignant mantra as he rose above and beyond those around him with supreme skill, grace and dignity.
Remembering the Gooner legend, another Arsenal great, Ian Wright reminisced about his former friend and teammate when saying that he was involved in the favourite game of his career – when the two played together at Highbury in the 1991-1992 season before Rocastle moved on to Leeds, and they helped the Gunners finish fourth in the old First Division.
Rocky, who also play for Manchester City and Sabah, in Malaysia, tragically passed away at the age of just 33 after suffering with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Always willing to share his invaluable experience and tips to others – regardless of who he spoke to,
20-years on since his passing, and David ‘Rocky’ Rocastle's legacy remains as one of outright praise.