Former referee Jack Taylor OBE has died at the age of 82.
He has been described by the Football League as "perhaps the finest English referee of all time."
Taylor officiated in more than 1,000 matches in his career which spanned more than thirty years.
He made history when he awarded the first-ever penalty in a World Cup final in the 1974 clash between West Germany and Holland in Munich.
Football League chairman Greg Clarke said: "Jack Taylor set the benchmark for refereeing, not just in this country but across the world, and in later life he applied the same levels of integrity, commitment and sheer love of the game to his other roles in football.
"Very few people in football can match the contribution made by Jack Taylor and fewer still have managed to do it whilst retaining the respect and admiration of absolutely everyone they have come into contact with.
"He will be greatly missed by everybody at The Football League and its clubs and our thoughts are with his family and friends."
Premier League chief executive, Richard Scudamore added: "Jack was one of English football's finest ambassadors who reached the pinnacle of refereeing and, until his very last days, continued to help the development of young referees. The game has lost a great servant and a true friend."
Mike Riley, general manager of the Professional Game Match Officials, echoed those thoughts, saying: "This is a terribly sad moment for English officiating and we send our condolences to his family and many friends.
"Every referee of our generation looked up to Jack Taylor because he set the standard. His performances at the 1974 FIFA World Cup inspired a whole generation of referees in this country.
"I was fortunate to travel to the 2010 World Cup Final in South Africa with Jack for him to watch Howard Webb. He was incredibly proud that another Englishman had taken charge of the biggest game in world football.
"But then that was Jack, he was not only very well respected throughout the game by players and managers, he was also an extremely nice man and wonderful fun to be around.
"And he never stopped inspiring match officials. Over the last five years he has played an important role for PGMOL passing on his many years of experience to tomorrow's referees. We will miss him greatly."
Jack Taylor passed away at his home in Shropshire.