Fundraiser launched after ex-Walsall manager Chris Nicholl's tracker watch stolen

A fundraiser has been launched for legendary former Walsall manager Chris Nicholl, after his tracker watch was stolen.

Chris Nicholl was presented the watch by former Walsall players and ISSA in June
Chris Nicholl was presented the watch by former Walsall players and ISSA in June

The 73-year-old, who suffers with dementia, was presented with the watch as a present by former Saddlers players and the Independent Saddlers Supporters’ Association (ISSA) on June 23.

The state-of-the-art watch tracked Nicholl’s movements, stopping him from getting lost and keeping him safe as his condition worsens.

After raising the money to buy the watch, the Professional Footballers’ Association stepped in to pay for it, meaning the money they had originally raised was planned to go towards new golfing gear for him.

On Saturday afternoon, former Villa defender Nicholl had his watch stolen from him in Bloxwich.

Now, ISSA have had to use the funds originally planned for new golfing gear to buy a new watch, as the first one was not insured.

Walsall fan Kevin Paddock has now set up a Go Fund Me page – with a target of £500 –to raise additional funds for new golfing equipment.

In a statement on the page, Paddock said: “The matter has been reported to the police.

“Unfortunately the watch wasn’t insured so the expensive watch needs to be replaced as soon as possible.

“To replace it, ISSA and former players have had to use the money they had raised for Chris’s golfing clothes. Let’s raise money to get Chris the golfing clothes and any additional money raised will be given to Chris to help him during these testing times.

“We will present the clothing to Chris on a Friday or Saturday night at the Railway Club – details will be released in due course. Let’s do our bit for a true legend of the game during a horrible time.”

The £500 target was surpassed in just two hours for the heroic ex-Northern Ireland defender.

People can donate by visiting: https://bit.ly/2OFJGEp.

After the watch was stolen, it continued to record its GPS location for several hours, tracking it to both commercial and domestic properties in the area until the battery ran out.

The group have since de–activated the watch, rendering it useless, and all the details from the device have been given to West Midlands Police, who are investigating.

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