Swansea City devastated to learn of the passing of Lenny Johnrose
Swansea City is devastated to learn of the passing of the club’s former player Lenny Johnrose at the age of 52, following a battle with Motor Neurone Disease.
While Lenny was best known for his long service at clubs like Burnley and Bury, the popular midfielder made a considerable impact during his 14 months with the Swans, and was a key figure in ensuring the club avoided losing Football League status in 2003.
Having joined the Swans in the January of the 2002-03 season, Lenny went on to make 15 appearances as Brian Flynn’s side fought to avoid relegation.
He netted in back-to-back games against Kidderminster and Oxford to help secure four valuable points, but there will be no doubting his most important goal in Swansea colours.
It came in that dramatic, never to be forgotten victory over Hull on the last day of the season.
With the scores at 2-2 it was Lenny who found the net to give Swansea a lead they would not relinquish, with James Thomas completing his hat-trick to spark wild celebrations later in proceedings.
Lenny would stay with the Swans until March 2004, having a final short stint with Burnley before retiring.
Born in Preston, his career had started as a trainee at Blackburn, where he graduated to the first team.
A loan spell at Preston and a move to Hartlepool followed before Stan Ternent took Lenny to Bury, where he was a key figure in their rise to the second tier.
Lenny followed Ternent to Burnley and spent over three-and-a-half years at Turf Moor before returning to Bury, from where he joined the Swans.
He made over 500 senior appearances and scored 61 goals in a 16-year professional career, but the numbers do not do justice to the character and personality of the man himself.
A bubbly, lively character; Lenny was much-loved by supporters, team-mates and staff during his time at the Vetch.
He most recently attended a Swansea fixture against Sheffield United in 2019, having been diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease in March 2017, and received a standing ovation from the Swansea.com Stadium crowd when he appeared on the pitch.
Lenny bore his illness with typical determination and good humour.
He set up the Len Johnrose Trust to raise awareness of the condition, which has no cure, and a charity game including a number of his former Swansea team-mates was held in 2019.
Lenny will be sorely and sadly missed by everyone at Swansea City, and the club sends its sincerest condolences to his family and friends at this incredibly sad time.
As a mark of respect, there will be a minute’s applause before our home fixture against Millwall on Tuesday evening, and our players will wear black armbands.