Geoff Hurst hails Nobby Stiles as the “heart and soul” of 1966 England team

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A look back at Nobby Stiles' glittering career with England and Man United

Nobby Stiles was a key factor to England’s success and hat-trick hero Sir Geoff Hurst led the homages.

Nobby Stiles, who has passed away at the age of 78, was the “heart and soul” of the England team which won the World Cup in 1966, his team- mate Sir Geoff Hurst has stated.

Stiles’ family revealed in a short declaration that he had actually passed away on Friday after a long health problem.

Holding midfielder Stiles was a key factor to England’s World Cup success on home soil, keeping Portugal star Eusebio peaceful in the semi-final

Hurst, whose hat-trick sealed England’s well-known 4-2 triumph over West Germany in the final, paid a radiant homage to his former team- mate.

“Hugely sad to hear Nobby has passed away,” he wrote on his official Twitter account.

“We were playing together way back for the U17s, U23s, and of course, for England, in fact, it was my first cap when Nobby scored, I think he was wearing No. 9! Great character, and the heart and soul of the team, he will be sorely missed.”

England manager Sir Alf Ramsey combated to keep Stiles in the side for the quarter-final match against Argentina after he came under pressure from the Football Association to drop him after a deal with on France’s Jacques Simon inthe final group game Stiles eventually played every minute of England’s campaign.

As well as his national team success, Stiles was also part of the Manchester United side which ended up being the first English club to win the European Cup in 1968, when they beat Benfica in the final at Wembley. He also won league titles with United in 1965 and 1967.

Nobby Stiles commemorates winning the European Cup in 1968 (PA)

The club stated in a declaration: “We are incredibly saddened to discover of the death of Nobby Stiles MBE.

“An integral part of our first-ever European Cup-winning side, Nobby was a titan of the club’s history, cherished for his heart and personality on and off the pitch. He will be sorely missed by us all.”

In overall Stiles won 28 caps, the least of any of the World Cup- winning side.

England provided their acknowledgements onTwitter Their post read: “We’re extremely saddened to discover of the death of Nobby Stiles, a key member of our FIFA World Cup- winning squad, at the age of 78.

“All of our thoughts are with Nobby’s loved ones.”

The FA stated a homage would be paid to Stiles ahead of England’s friendly against the Republic of Ireland next month.

Rest in peace, Nobby ❤

— England (@England) October 30, 2020

Its chairman, Greg Clarke, stated: “Nobby Stiles will permanently be kept in mind as a major part of English football’s proud history, particularly as a Wembley winner on 2 very noteworthy celebrations.

” The sight of him commemorating the World Cup victory on the Wembley grass still sticks around more than half- a-century on from that well-known day and is remembered as much as his commanding semi-final screen against Portugal.

“He will be much missed, and my thoughts are with his family and friends today.”

A tweet from the FIFA World Cup account read: “We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Nobby Stiles. He played in every minute of England’s World Cup-winning campaign in 1966. His performance in the semi-final, especially, will never be forgotten. RIP Nobby.”

Stiles was born in Collyhurst, Manchester, in Might 1942, during an air raid. He concurred apprentice terms with United in 1959, at a time when the club was still recuperating from the Munich air catastrophe a year earlier in which 8 players were eliminated.

He left United in 1971, going on to play for Middlesbrough and Preston. He later on handled the Lilywhites in between 1977 and 1981, in the past coaching Canadian side Vancouver Whitecaps and then West Brom in between 1985 and 1986.

He went back to United as a youth team coach under Sir Alex Ferguson in 1989 for a four-year stint.

Stiles suffered a series of health problems in later life, consisting of a dementia medical diagnosis.

Stiles holding his 1966 World Cup winner’s medal (Dave Thompson/PA)

In 2010, after a mini-stroke, he chose to sell his medals in order to leave something to his family.

United purchased them for ₤ 200,000 and the medals are now housed in the club’s museum.

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