Tommy Smith’s daughter Janette Simpson confirmed the news of his death in a statement to the Liverpool Echo. She said: “Dad died very peacefully in his sleep shortly after 4.30pm today at Green Heyes Nursing home in Park Road, Waterloo, Crosby. I was on my way to see him when he passed a couple of minutes before I arrived. Dad was only in here since the end of January and prior to that had been living in a care and sheltered accommodation complex for three years in Maghull.
“He had been growing increasingly frail and suffering from a variety of ailments over the last three months especially.
“We are obviously all devastated.”
She added of her late mother: “Our mum (Sue) died four years ago.
“Mum’s death did hit dad especially hard and the illness took a bit of a grip of him after that we feel.”
Tommy was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in October 2014.
The late legend spent 18 years as a player with the Reds, helping Liverpool to four league titles, two FA Cups and the European Cup in 1977.
The influential star captained his boyhood club and made 638 appearances for the team 1960 and 1978.
Football pundit Michael Owen, 39, has led the tributes to the Liverpool star on Twitter.
He wrote: “Sad to hear that @LFC player Tommy Smith has died today aged 74. R.I.P,” followed by a clip of the former player in action.
Jamie Carragher, 41, commented: “RIP The Anfield Iron Tommy Smith. One of the clubs all time greats.”
Liverpool FC also shared a statement on their official Twitter page.
They commented: “We’re deeply saddened by the passing of our former captain Tommy Smith, aged 74.
“The thoughts of everyone at Liverpool Football Club are with Tommy’s family and many friends.
“Rest in peace, the Anfield Iron.”
Before Tommy’s big break, he had worked as a groundsman.
He joined the club in 1960, before Bill Shankly put him on to the Liverpool first team and later became one of the team’s most influential players.
Tommy is survived by Janette, son Darren and four grandchildren, Matthew, William, Jessica and Imogen.