JAMES MADDISON has revealed his pride at finally paying tribute to Leicester City’s late club doctor Stuart Birtwistle.
The England midfielder curled an unstoppable right foot shot into the roof of Manchester City’s net from 22 yards to leave stunned City ‘keeper Ederson gasping.
Then he ran to the side of the pitch to hold aloft a T-shirt with Birtwistle’s image printed on it as he paid homage to his friend and former colleague.
Maddison said: “Stuart was a lovely man.
“He passed away over the summer and I always said my next goal would be for him, but because of my injury and the break, it’s been a bit of wait.
“I said he probably would have been watching down from heaven, but actually I think he would have been on a golf course.
“He was an unbelievable man.”
Maddison’s amazing strike was befitting of the poignant tribute he was about to make.
And it also gave the Foxes what proved to be an unassailable 4-1 lead.
The 23-year-old then ran over to the dugout where he was handed a white T-shirt.
He held it up to an empty stand, where it showed a photo of Stuart ‘Bertie’ Birtwhistle standing by the Premier League trophy the club won in 2016.
Birtwhistle passed away in the summer after a ‘long fight with cancer’.
The former Foxes doctor, who worked for the NHS as an orthopaedic surgeon for over 30 years, leaves behind wife Alison and two children Laura and Joseph.