I’m shocked and deeply saddened by the sudden death of legendary American football journalist Grant Wahl at the World Cup in Qatar tonight.

Grant was incredibly generous to me in the early stages of my journalistic career – and his advice, time and kindness were all the more remarkable as we didn’t know each other at all before he got in touch having read articles I had written for Hammyend. Grant was the doyen of American football writing and the first port of call for news about the US game, which meant he had a lot of admiration for the way Fulham became a home for some of the brightest American talent.

As a journalist, Grant was fearless. He stood up for his colleagues – something which cost him a job he loved with Sports Illustrated – and for his values, as we saw earlier in this tournament when he was detained for wearing a rainbow-coloured t-shirt. My thoughts go out to his Grant’s family, friends and colleagues tonight as they attempt to come to terms with this devastating loss. May he rest in power.

Please forgive this moment of personal indulgence as well as the fact that updates may be a little more irregular than normal in the coming days.