Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha Was Most Generous Man In Football

Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha thumbs upGetty

Leicester City owner, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is remembered as one of the most generous men in football, following his death in a helicopter crash. 

Srivaddhanaprabha was one of five people on board his helicopter when it crashed just outside the King Power Stadium, following Leicester City’s Premier League match on Saturday (October 27).

The aircraft spiralled out of control just moments after taking off and came down close to the stadium, killing Srivaddhanaprabha, the pilot of the helicopter, Eric Swaffer, the pilot’s partner, Izabela Roza Lechowicz, and two members of Srivaddhanaprabha’s staff, Nursara Suknamai and Kaveporn Punpare.

Leicester City Football Club confirmed the death of Srivaddhanaprabha – who bought the club in 2010 – in a statement on Twitter:

Since the accident, tributes have been pouring in for those who died, with many acknowledging the generosity of Srivaddhanaprabha and everything he did for the football club.

After buying the team, who were struggling in the Championship at the time, the Thai billionaire cleared their debts by lending the club almost £100 million in the first four years he was owner, reports the BBC.

His commitment and support of the team and their fans was evident as he gave Leicester supporters free beer, scarves and cakes during the famous Premier League title win in 2015/16, as well as often organising free bus travel to away games to ensure fans would always be there to cheer on the team.

Srivaddhanaprabha supported and helped Leicester City beat odds of 5000-1 to become Premier League champions for the 2015/2016 season.

He stepped up his generosity even further when he bought every player a new car after their league success – a true sign of his appreciation for the team.

His kind-hearted nature spread beyond the football club as the 61-year-old also donated £1 million to Leicester University’s medical department, another £1 million to Leicester Royal Infirmary, and £2m towards a new children’s hospital.

Many Leicester players have honoured the owner on social media in emotional and heartfelt tributes.

Leicester City’s title-winning goalkeeper, Kasper Schmeichel tweeted:

It is difficult to put into words how much you have meant to this football club and to the city of Leicester.

We all know about the investment in the football club you and your family have made. But this is about so much more. You cared so deeply for not just the club but for the entire community.

Your endless contribution to Leicester’s hospitals and charities will never be forgotten. You went above and beyond in every aspect.

Never have I ever come across a man like you. So hard working, so dedicated, so passionate, so kind and so generous in the extreme.

Kasper’s teammate, Harry Maguire wrote:

Words can’t describe how I feel. A truly great, kind, loving man who will be missed so much by everyone.

I will never forget the Chairman’s support, not only during my time @LCFC but also during the World Cup

Posting to Instagram, Jamie Vardy uploaded a picture of himself with Srivaddhanaprabha, captioning the photo:

Struggling to find the right words….but to me you are legend, an incredible man who had the biggest heart, the soul of Leicester City Football Club. [sic]

Thank you for everything you did for me, my family and our club. I will truly miss you…. may you rest in peace.

Our thoughts are with all those affected by the tragic events.

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.