England 1966 World Cup hero Jack Charlton dies

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England 1966 World Cup hero Jack Charlton dies

England World Cup hero and Leeds United legend Jack Charlton has died.

The 85-year-old passed away peacefully at his Northumberland home on Friday, his family said.

He had been suffering from a long-term illness.

Charlton, the older brother of Bobby Charlton, was part of England's World Cup-winning team in 1966.

Image: Jack Charlton (left) and his younger brother Bobby were both members of the 1966 World Cup-winning England team
The Charlton brothers - Bobby (L) and Jack - in action for their rival clubs Manchester United and Leeds United in January 1969
Image: The Charlton brothers – Bobby (L) and Jack – in action for their rival clubs Manchester United and Leeds United in January 1969

He was a one-club man for Leeds United, making a record 773 appearances over a 23-year career as a player.

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Widely hailed as one of the all-time great central defenders in the game, Leeds United said they were "deeply saddened" by the news.

His family said in a statement: "Jack died peacefully on Friday 10 July at the age of 85. He was at home in Northumberland, with his family by his side."

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Nottingham Forest described Charlton as a "true great of the game", adding that he was a "great adversary, a fine manager and a terrific person".

The England football team tweeted: "We are devastated by the news that Jack Charlton, a member of our World Cup-winning team of 1966, has passed away.

"Our deepest sympathies are with Jack's family, friends and former clubs."

We are extremely saddened by the passing of Jack Charlton, brother of Sir Bobby and member of England's 1966 World Cup-winning team.

Our deepest condolences go to all the Charlton family for their immensely sad loss. pic.twitter.com/rkVjsYDVSF

— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 11, 2020

Charlton joined Leeds United at the age of 15 as part of the ground staff, before debuting as a player against Doncaster Rovers in 1953.

He helped the club to win promotion from the Second Division twice, and was also part of the side which won the League Cup in 1968 and the FA Cup in 1972.

He scored 96 times for Leeds, making him the club's ninth highest scorer in their history.

The popular player, affectionately known as "Big Jack", also won a total of 35 caps for England.

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