LEGENDARY Island footballer Arnold Olive, who scored 1,100 goals as a centre forward for local football teams, has died at the age of 80.

Mr Olive, known affectionately as Arnie, was also a former boxing champion, bowls player, building site manager and nightclub bouncer.

He was born in Bolton and went to the same primary school as two other goal-scoring legends, Tommy Lawton and Nat Lofthouse, who both went on to play for England.

At the age of seven his parents, Alma and Arnold, brought their family to the Island. They went on to run a guest house in Nelson Street, Ryde.

Under the guidance of his Bishop Lovett schoolmaster, Bert Morgan, Arnie became a schoolboy boxing champion.

While winning the Hampshire Schools title he broke his hand and it was put in plaster for a month. It seemed he wouldn't make the Southern Counties finals but the night before the event, held in Kent, his mother cut off the plaster and told him he was fighting the next day. He won the crown.

Years later ex-boxer Tommy Farr was interested in him becoming a professional and wrote him several letters. He went to a London gym for sparring, under the guidance of Arthur Boggis, but, on his own admission, was not dedicated enough.

During his Island soccer career he scored 120 goals in one season for Oakfield and in another, 84 for Haylands.

His other clubs included Seaview, Brading, Newport, Cowes, Ryde, Sandown, Whitecroft, Chillerton Choppers and Foresters.

He twice scored goals from the centre circle, and when he became a semi-pro for Cowes he hit 42 goals in his first season. He was spotted by a Portsmouth scout after scoring six goals in a match for Oakfield.

Pompey boss Eddie Lever offered him a trial and he scored a hat-trick for Portsmouth Reserves. Lever wanted to sign him as a professional, but being loyal to Oakfield, he finished their season and promised Lever he would sign in the summer, but Lever was sacked and his successor, Freddie Cox, did not sign him.

After he retired from playing he managed Ryde Reserves to a cup and league double. A family milestone came when he played in the same Ryde team as his son, also Arnold.

For a while Arnie worked in London for pop music mogul Don Arden, and was a minder to groups like Black Sabbath and Amen Corner. He became friends with Ozzy Osbourne and they always exchanged Christmas cards.

When he became a social worker at Yarmouth's Eastmore House it proved to be among the most satisfying few years of his life and he helped them form a football team.

His wife Zena, whom he fell in love with in the school playground, died in June.

He leaves daughters, Desiree and Michelle, son Arnold, son-in-law Patrick, grandsons Daniel and Robbi, and great grandson Lewis.