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Brendan Rodgers hails "great man" Gary Speed

Rodgers hails
© PA Photos
Brendan Rodgers pays tribute to Gary Speed after Swansea's 0-0 draw with Aston Villa yesterday.

Swansea City boss Brendan Rodgers has paid tribute to Gary Speed following his team's 0-0 draw with Aston Villa just hours after the news of the Welsh team manager's death broke.

The game at the Liberty Stadium went ahead despite the visible grief of players from both teams.

"Having experienced death recently and understanding what it means for children and families, it's just terrible. It will take people a few days to understand it and all our thoughts will be with the family," Rodgers said.

"Yes, we take our point today but it's about more than that. It's about a life lost, the life of a truly great man."

Rodgers revealed that the decision to go ahead with the match was a mark of respect for Speed.

"The news came as such a bombshell just before the game," he said.

"It was a terrible irony we were playing a match here in Wales and a Welsh legend, a proper great of football, has passed away.

"Alex McLeish spoke to his players, I to mine, and we decided we'd want to play the game as a mark of respect for a great man."

Speed, 42, was found dead at his home early on Sunday.

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