EASTLEIGH are asking fans to join in a minute’s applause in the 62nd minute of tomorrow’s National League fixture at home to Salford City.

It will be a mark of respect for the club’s much-loved former player and kitman Kevin Dixon, who passed away on Wednesday at the age of 62.

A club statement said: “Kevin stood down from his role as first-team kitman at the end of the 2017/18 season.

“He had been involved with the club for a number of years in a playing capacity and was kitman for over ten years.

“ Kevin was a very popular figure amongst the playing staff, management and fans.

"He was a football man through and through, having played a good standard across many local clubs.

"His support for the football management, including first team all the way through to the academy, will always be greatly appreciated.

“Kevin passed away on Wednesday after a short battle with illness. Positive and strong until the end, we were delighted to have Kevin visit us during our recent FA Cup game against Hampton & Richmond Borough, where we were able to share a beer.

“We are thankful for the hard work Kevin put in over the years and offer our deepest condolences to his family.

"As a mark of our gratitude we ask fans to stand in a minute’s applause in the 62nd minute (to acknowledge his age) at Saturday's National League fixture against Salford City.

“We will forever appreciate Kevin’s contributions to the club.

“Rest In Peace."

Kevin’s death has saddened the whole football community, among them Winchester City’s director of football Dave Malone.

He wrote: “Kev has been my friend for nearly 20 years and worked with me at Bashley, WCFC and Eastleigh.

“Everything he did, he did to perfection - and (nearly) always with a smile on his face!

"He had a wicked sense of humour and was more generous than anyone I know. The parties he held were legendary and memories of those will last forever.

“Above all else, Kev was a great family man. He leaves behind his lovely wife Andrea, two great kids and two young grandchildren who will miss growing up with a grandad that adored them.

“I am so glad that Kev made it along to our game last Saturday. I know he loved seeing so many old acquaintances and friends. It’s almost as if he was coming to say goodbye, which maybe he was. Far too early though.

“Rest in peace Kev - we will miss you.”

AFC Totton chairman Wayne Mew was another close friend.

Stags In The Community tweeted: “So very sad to hear of the sudden passing of Kevin Dixon.

“The thoughts and prayers of all at AFC Totton are not only with our friends at Eastleigh FC but all involved in football locally who knew Kevin.

"May another star shine brightly in the sky.”