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England World Cup-winning 'keeper Gordon Banks dies

AFP  |  London 

Gordon Banks, England's during their triumphant campaign, has died aged 81, his former City announced on Tuesday.

His family said the 73-times capped Banks, who lost an eye in a in 1972, had passed away in his sleep.

"It is with great sadness that we announce that Gordon passed away peacefully overnight," his family said.

"We are devastated to lose him but we have so many happy memories and could not have been more proud of him."

Geoff Hurst, who scored a hat-trick in the 4-2 win over in final at Wembley, tweeted a fulsome tribute to his former team-mate.

"Very sad to hear the that Gordon has died. One of the very greatest," tweeted 77-year-old Hurst.

Banks, who played in every game of the 1966 campaign on home soil, is probably best known for a wonder save he produced to deny Brazilian great Pele in the 1970 group match.

"Once I got my hand to it I hadn't a clue where it was going," he modestly said afterwards.

Pele -- who would go on to lift the trophy -- admitted later he had said 'gol', so sure was he that the ball was heading into the net. still won the game 1-0.

However, Banks later recounted that he did not appreciate the remark made by one of his team-mates that day,

"I patted him on his head, and I said 'why didn't you catch it?' and the abuse that came back was unbelievable," said Mullery.

Mullery said Banks was probably the best he had played with or against.

"He was the best at that time. We had some great goalkeepers in those days, and the only person I can think came near was Pat Jennings," said Mullery.

"He was He was a likeable man, and when it came to business, he was probably the best there has ever been."


- 'He had goosebumps' -

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Banks, whose club playing career revolved largely around and City, is the latest of the 1966 team to pass away.

Bobby Moore, the baby of the team and preceded him while several such as and suffer from Alzheimer's.

Another former and England legend -- albeit from a later generation -- also tweeted his appreciation of Banks, whose sole trophies at club level were two League Cups, one piece with and

"Oh no. Gordon Banks, an absolute hero of mine, and countless others, has died," tweeted Lineker.

"@England's World Cup winner was one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time, and such a lovely, lovely man. #RIPGordon."

Stoke said Banks -- who played 250 times for The Potters after he joined from Leicester in 1967 -- had not been in good health for several weeks.

"We've been expecting his, he has been poorly for a number of weeks but it's a very sad day for us, we love him so much," said Coates.

"He made his home in Stoke, and was very much part of the fabric of the club. You don't get too many like him, and he was immensely modest for all talent.

"He told me when they walked out at Wembley for the final, and he had goose-bumps, he had never seen anything like it.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, February 12 2019. 17:15 IST
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