STOKE-ON-TRENT, England, Feb 12 (Reuters) – Gordon Banks, the goalkeeper in England’s 1966 World Cup-winning group, has died on the age of 81, his former membership Stoke Metropolis mentioned on Tuesday.
Banks received 73 caps for England between 1963 and 1972 and made practically 200 appearances for Stoke earlier than his enjoying profession was delivered to an finish as a consequence of a automotive crash that value him the sight in a single eye.
He was broadly thought to be one of many best goalkeepers to have performed the sport and will probably be greatest remembered for the diving cease he made to disclaim Brazil’s Pele on the 1970 World Cup, which later grew to become often called the “save of the century”.
“It’s with nice unhappiness that we announce that Gordon handed away peacefully in a single day,” Banks’ household mentioned in a press release posted on Stoke’s official web site https://www.stokecityfc.com/information/from-the-family-of-gordon-banks.
“We’re devastated to lose him however we now have so many pleased reminiscences and couldn’t have been extra happy with him.”
Banks performed each recreation within the 1966 World Cup together with the 4-2 victory over West Germany within the closing at Wembley — the one time England has received the world title.
4 years later although, in Mexico, he produced one of the crucial excellent saves within the historical past of the match in a bunch recreation between England and Brazil, which Brazil received 1-0.
Pele rose to move a cross from the byline by right-winger Jairzinho, thundering the header down in direction of Banks’ proper hand put up.
The ball gave the impression to be previous Banks however his agility and energy noticed him get down and palm it excessive and large to security.
Pele travelled to Stoke 38 years later to unveil a statue to Banks and recalled the save.
“From the second I headed it, I used to be certain it had gone in,” he mentioned.
“After I headed the ball, I had already started to leap to have a good time the objective. Then I appeared again and I could not imagine it hadn’t gone in. I’ve scored greater than a thousand targets in my life and the factor individuals all the time speak to me about is the one I did not rating,” he mentioned.
Banks recalled the second modestly as a chunk of fine fortune.
“As quickly as I acquired my hand to it, I believed it was going within the prime nook,” he mentioned.
“However after I might landed on the arduous ground, I appeared up and noticed the ball bounce behind the web and that is once I mentioned: Banksy, you fortunate prat.”
The Sheffield-born Banks started his profession at Chesterfield in 1958 and moved to Leicester Metropolis the next yr. He received his first England cap in 1963, 4 years earlier than he joined Stoke.
Banks retired in 1973 following the automotive crash, aged solely 33, however 4 years later he returned to play within the North American Soccer League with Fort Lauderdale Strikers.
The German Soccer Affiliation (DFB) paid tribute to Banks on, saying on Twitter: “A fierce opponent and man. Relaxation in peace, Gordon Banks.” (Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Enhancing by Sudipto Ganguly and Angus MacSwan)