Last Saturday, 3 June, I went to the new Wembley Stadium for the first time. England were playing Belgium in a friendly. We won the game 1-0, rather against the run of play. It wasn’t the most scintillating of games – in fact the paper aeroplane throwing, using the red and white England cards that had been left on the seats, grabbed more attention in the first half. But a win is a win, and Danny Welbeck took his goal very well. A few beers were had, and of course there was a curry afterwards. A good day.
Our rendezvous before the game was the Bobby Moore statue. As imperious as the great man was on the field. Master of all he surveyed. West Ham, England. 108 caps. World Cup captain 1966.
The man Pele embraced as an equal after their titantic clash in the 1970 World Cup group stages. Brazil 1 England 0.
Never recognised with the knighthood he deserved by the establishment in his lifetime, sadly cut short at the age of 51. His post-football career was one of missed opportunities, but we will never forget his greatness as a footballer. And the statue at Wembley finally gives him the prominence he deserves.
My captain, my leader, my right hand man. He was the spirit and heartbeat of the team. A cool, calculating footballer I could trust with my life. He was the supreme professional, the best I ever worked with. Without him England would never have won the World Cup….. Sir Alf Ramsey, England manager.
BOBBY MOORE WAS THE BEST DEFENDER IN THE HISTORY OF THE GAME – FRANZ BECKENBAUER (Der Kaiser, the greatest defender/midfielder the game has ever known)
And Bobby Moore, with Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters, is the reason why I support West Ham United to this very day.
BOBBY MOORE – NUMBER SIX