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Gordon Banks dead: England World Cup winner passes away in his sleep aged 81 | Football | Sport


England World Cup legend Banks was 81 and passed away peacefully in his sleep last night, his former club Stoke City confirmed this morning.

“From the family of Gordon Banks,” Stoke tweeted.

“It is with great sadness that we announce that Gordon passed away peacefully overnight.

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

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Leicester also tweeted: “Leicester City Football Club is deeply saddened to learn of the death of our former goalkeeper Gordon Banks OBE, who has passed away at the age of 81.”

The England football team account then followed up by tweeting: “We’re deeply saddened to hear that Gordon Banks, our #WorldCup-winning goalkeeper, has passed away.

“Our thoughts are with Gordon’s friends, family and supporters at this difficult time.”

Chesterfield, where Banks began his career in the late 1950s, tweeted: “The sad news reaches us that legendary former Spireite Gordon Banks has passed away.

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“Gordon, who started his career at Chesterfield, was of course part of England’s 1966 World Cup-winning team. Our thoughts are with Gordon’s family and friends.”

John Bishop led the tributes when he posted a message on Instagram.

“Sad news about Gordon Banks who I had the pleasure to meet on a few occasions,” he wrote.

“A gentleman and a football legend RIP.”

Banks’ England team-mate, and competitor for the goalkeeper jersey Peter Shilton, also tweeted to say he’s lost his hero.

“I’m devastated – today Ive lost my hero our condolences to his family rip Gordon,” he said.

Banks won the World Cup with England in 1966 and played for Leicester and Stoke over a 19-year career.

He started his career at Chesterfield and went on to make 510 league appearances during his career and  won 73 caps for England – with the highlight coming in 1966.

He was famed for an incredible save from Pele in the 1970 World Cup in Mexico – regarded as the greatest save of all time.

Banks lost the sight in his right eye after being injured in a road accident in 1972 and retired at the age of 34 as a result.

In an interview three years ago he revealed the secret to the 1966 success.

“The simple secret of the team was how much we liked each other,” Banks told the Daily Mail in January 2016.

“We didn’t want to let each other down.

“People talk about some of us more than others, but there were heroes all through that team. Simple, selfless men.”



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