John Giles has been described as "the best analyst there has even been" by his colleague and friend Eamon Dunphy as he prepares to end his long association with RTE.
Herald columnist Giles (75) was told his contract with the national broadcaster will not be renewed, marking the end of an era for the Three Amigos - Giles, Dunphy and Liam Brady.
Dunphy (70) praised Giles' work and described him as "the best analyst ever".
Speaking to the Herald, he expressed his sadness at the former footballer's departure, but added that he had been aware of the news for some time.
"I knew John was going at the end of the year, since we signed our contracts," he said.
"He's been brilliant. He's been sensible in RTE's soccer coverage and it's very sad to see him go. He never said anything for dramatic effect, he was always honest in what he said.
"I've worked with him for 30 years and been friends with him for 60.
"The great thing was that we - John, Liam and myself - were being paid to talk about soccer, something we would have been doing anyway.
"So even if we weren't working on matches, we would still have been in the pub talking about soccer and about the matches."
Asked if it would be impossible to replace his pal on the RTE panel, Dunphy said that "nobody is irreplaceable" before adding that Giles "was the best pundit" there is.
"He's the best ever analyst in my opinion," he said. "His understanding of the game, his knowledge of knowing which player is good and which player isn't good can't be matched, it's been great.
"We were obviously very shocked when Bill O'Herlihy passed, and he's been a great loss. John is leaving the panel now as well, but it certainly won't be the last time I see him - I hope.
"We've been great friends for so many years, and I wish him all the best with his future work."
Giles previously told the Herald that he had no plans to retire despite his contract with RTE coming to an end.
His time with the broadcaster will finish after the European Championships this summer, following negations with RTE head of sport Ryle Nugent late last year.
Giles described the decision as "completely understandable" and said he would take it "in good faith".
"But I want to make it perfectly clear that I'm not retiring or even thinking about it," he added.