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English Team and Bobby Moore After World Cup Victory

England won the World Cup and the nation’s hearts in 1966 (Picture: Bettmann Archive)

England are gearing up for their latest FIFA World Cup adventure with the tournament just one month away from kicking-off in Qatar.

Gareth Southgate is set to name the provisional England squad that he hopes will emulate Sir Alf Ramsey’s infamous World Cup winning team of 1966.

Ramsey’s men remain the only England side to have tasted World Cup success and are widely revered as the most popular and celebrated team in English sporting history after beating West Germany 4-2 in the final.

But who are the legendary men who brought joy to the nation in the summer of 1966 and where are they now?

We take a trip down memory lane to take a look at some of the key members of the World Cup winning squad.

Gordon Banks

Banks entered the tournament as England’s undisputed number one goalkeeper and he played every minute of the World Cup campaign, keeping four clean sheets in the process.

He went on to achieve 73 England caps and he is also famously remembered for his now-legendary save against Pele in the 1970 World Cup.

Banks won the 1972 League Cup with Stoke but he was involved in a car crash just months later which resulted in a loss of sight in one eye and ended his professional career.

Banks died in February 2019 aged 81.

Gordon Banks playing for Stoke City

Banks shone between the sticks for England (Picture: Don Morley/Allsport/Getty Images)

George Cohen

Cohen provided the assist for Bobby Charlton’s semi-final winner against Portugal and was vice-captain for the final against West Germany.

The right back was the first member of the 1966 Starting XI to retire from international duty with his 37th and final cap coming against Northern Ireland in 1967.

Cohen spent the whole of his career at Fulham but was forced to retire with injury aged just 29.

The 82 year-old fought and beat bowel cancer for 14 years in the 1980s and later placed his World Cup medal up for sale, which was bought by Fulham for the club to display at Craven Cottage.

Cohen provided the assist for Bobby Charlton’s winner against Portugal (Picture: Getty Images)

Jack Charlton

Charlton started every game in 1966 and was an instrumental part of England’s success – even if he did give away a penalty late in the semi-final at Wembley.

Charlton made 629 appearances for Leeds before turning his attention to a career in management in 1973.

After spells with Middlesbrough, Sheffield Wednesday and Newcastle, Charlton guided the Republic of Ireland to the quarter-finals of World Cup in 1990.

The centre back was awarded honorary Irish citizenship in 1996 and was made a freeman of Dublin in 1994.

Charlton died aged 85 in July 2020 with dementia and lymphoma.

England 1966 World Cup winner Jack Charlton

Jack Charlton was a rock at the back for England (Picture: Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Bobby Moore

Moore was the England cap during the dizzying days of the 1966 tournament and was presented with the Jules Rimet trophy by Queen Elizabeth II in the royal box after the match.

During the final itself, Moore calmly picked out Geoff Hurst from 40 yards away to make it 4-2 to England in extra time.

Moore is regarded as the country’s greatest ever centre back and one of the best of all time in the history of the beautiful game.

He won 108 caps in total for the Three Lions and played over 500 time for West Ham between 1958 and 1974, before calling it quits from the game in 1983 after a spell in America.

Moore died from bowel and liver cancer in February 1993, aged just 51.

Captain Moore received the trophy from the Queen (Picture: Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)

Ray Wilson

Wilson was an ever-present in Ramsey’s starting XI during the World Cup.

The left-back was the oldest member of the team that started the final, and retired from England duty just two years later after suffering a serious knee injury and subsequently losing his place in the team.

Wilson kept a low profile after his World Cup heroics, building a successful undertaker’s business in Huddersfield after retiring from football in 1971.

Wilson passed away from Alzheimer’s in May 2018 at the age of 83.

Wilson kept a low profile after the glory at Wembley (Picture: Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Nobby Stiles

Stiles played the role of uncompromising hardman in the centre of England’s midfield, who was tasked with disrupting opposition attacks and protecting the back four.

He was lauded with his incredible semi-final display which saw him man-mark and nullify the great Eusebio, who is regarded as one of the best players of all time.

The final with West Germany saw Stiles win just his 20th cap for England, and he only went on to play a further eight matches for the team after the tournament ended.

Stiles made over 300 appearances for Manchester United in his career, before working as a youth team coach at the club and overseeing the development of the infamous Class of 92 which included David Beckham and the Neville brothers.

He passed away with dementia and prostate cancer in October 2020, aged 78.

Stiles was England’s midfield enforcer (Picture: Bob Thomas Sports Photography via Getty Images)

Alan Ball

Ball was the youngest member of England’s World Cup winning team, aged just 21 at the time of tournament.

Ball was one of the stand-out performers in the whole competition and his all-action, energetic displays made him a household name with the English public.

The vibrant midfielder – with his socks down around his ankles – set up Hurst’s goal to put England 3-2 ahead in the final.

After retiring, Ball spent 21 years in management including periods in charge at Manchester City, Portsmouth and Stoke.

Ball suffered a heart attack and passed away aged 61 in April 2007.

Ball was the youngest member of England’s team (Picture: Norman Quicke/Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Sir Bobby Charlton

Sir Bobby is one of the most famous names out of the whole England squad from 1966, having played for the Three Lions over 100 times.

Jack’s younger brother scored the first goal in the 2-0 group stage win over Mexico, before scoring both goals to help England overcome Portugal in the semis.

The 85 year-old was record goalscorer for England and Manchester United, before being overtaken on both accounts by Wayne Rooney.

Charlton has been a director at Manchester United since 1984, and in 2020 he was diagnosed with dementia.

Charlton scored three goals in the 1966 World Cup (Picture: Norman Quicke/Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Martin Peters

Peters was not selected for England’s opening group game against Uruguay, but following the 0-0 draw Ramsey put him straight into the starting lineup where he stayed for the rest of the World Cup.

He won 67 England caps and spent the majority of his career at West Ham, Tottenham and Norwich.

Peters moved into the insurance business after retiring in 1983 and eventually ended up on Tottenham’s board of directors in the late 1990s.

The former midfielder died in his sleep in December 2019 after a three-year battle with Alzheimer’s, aged 76.

England 1966 World Cup winner Martin Peters

Peters was selected in the team after being dropped for the first match (Picture: Blackman/Daily Express/Getty Images)

Sir Geoff Hurst

Hurst remains the only player to ever score a hat-trick in a World Cup final, with his three goals against the West Germans sealing his place in the history books.

The striker stopped playing for England in 1972, and called quits on his time in the game for good in 1976 after amassing 180 goals for West Ham in the highlight of his club career.

The 80 year-old had a brief period in management in charge of Telford, Chelsea and Kuwait, whilst turning his hand to insurance around the same time.

Hurst lives in Cheltenham with his wife Judith and has offered to offer his brain for dementia research after his death, following the diagnosis of five of his World Cup winning teammates.

Hurst fired England to immortality in the final (Picture: Norman Quicke/Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Roger Hunt

Hunt played in all six of England’s matches, scoring twice against Mexico and once against France.

He turned out more than 400 times for Liverpool and Hunt remains the player with the most league goals for the club on 244.

The former forward player retired from football five years after winning the World Cup with England and joined his family’s haulage business.

Hunt died on 27 September 2021 at the age of 83.

Hunt featured in all six of England’s games (Picture: Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)


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England 1966 World Cup team - Who are they and where are they now?

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