Ross Embleton has described former Leyton Orient midfielder Ray Wilkins as a ‘real gentleman’ after the 61-year-old died last week at the age of 61.

The O’s paid tribute to their former player ahead of Saturday’s game against Barrow, when a minute’s applause was impeccably observed by both sets of supporters at Brisbane Road.

Wilkins passed away last Wednesday after being admitted to St George’s Hospital in London after suffering a cardiac arrest.

The 61-year-old, well known by his childhood nickname ‘Butch’, won 84 England caps and was perhaps most remembered for his association with Chelsea, who he represented both as a player and coach. Wilkins even led the side on one occasion on a caretaker basis and also enjoyed spells with Watford, Aston Villa and Fulham as a coach.

As a player, the 61-year-old represented 11 sides in total, winning the FA Cup with Manchester United in 1983 and the Scottish title with Rangers in 1989.

Wilkins ended his career with Orient, where he made three appearances before retiring in 1997, and Embleton paid tribute to the club’s former midfielder after Saturday’s game against Barrow.

He said: “It (the minute’s applause) certainly left a lump in everybody’s throat. I remember Ray Wilkins playing here. It wasn’t too dissimilar to today in terms of the games he was playing in. He was a proper footballer.

“He played in a few teams where the ball spent a lot of time in the air so you didn’t see the real Ray Wilkins. But I have met him once or twice personally, not in a huge amount of detail, and I know everybody you speak to says what a fantastic guy he was.

“He was a real gentleman. I think some of the information that has come out from a number of players in the last few days tells you what type of guy he was. It’s a huge loss.”