Louise Smyth, 25th February 2020
Yesterday, 27 years ago, Bobby Moore sadly passed away. However, his memory will never be forgotten. The moments which lit up his career, and English football, are moments which will always be treasured in the game. 668 English league appearances. 108 England Caps. 26 goals. 16 seasons as a Hammer.
The West Ham centre back is still thought of as the London clubs greatest ever player, as well as his renowned performances during his time as part of the England football team. Moore was given the England armband in May of 1963, making him the youngest ever captain of the Three Lions aged just 22. This came just one year after Moore had made his first England player debut, with 12 appearances for the country under his wing.
The end of the 1963/4 season brought further success to Moore’s name, with the Football Writers’ Association awarding him with the title of ‘Footballer of the Year’. He set out to prove that this title was well earned when one year later West Ham took on Munich and celebrated a win of the European Cup Winners Cup at Wembley, still standing as West Hams only European cup triumph.
The biggest moment that we all associate with Moore was his performance at England’s 1966 FIFA World Cup, captaining the England team to victory. To be more specific, on the 30 of July 1966, Moore would hold the World Cup in his right hand, perched upon the shoulders of the England team as they celebrated their win. This moment would be the pinnacle for England to this day; with a nation is united by sport. Thanks to Moore, England celebrated their first and only World Cup win.
Coming back as defending champions in 1970, England took on Brazil at the next World Cup. Unfortunately for Moore, celebrating with his England team in 1966 was the last heroic height that the national team would reach, losing 1 – 0 to Brazil. Pele and Moore famously embraced at full time in the iconic photo of sportsmanship, Pele later said “That photo has gone around the world. I think it was very important for football. We demonstrate that it's a sport. Win or lose, the example, the friendship, you must pass these on to other players to the next generation."
After 3 seasons at Fulham and short stints at various other clubs; San Antonio Thunder, Seattle Sounders, Herning Frenad and Carolina Lightnin’, Moore retired and hung up his playing boots in 1978. However, his career within the game wasn’t over, eventually playing the part of sports editor for the Daily Sport newspaper, before joining Capital Gold radio as football analyst.
Devastatingly, aged only 51, Moore’s life was cut short by cancer on 24 February 1993.
Twenty-seven years on, his memory thrives, carved into the fans who saw him play, and told to those who didn’t get the chance. Not only does his sporting name live on, but the Bobby Moore fund, in partnership with Cancer Research UK, has raised awareness and funds into the heart-breaking illness that affects 1 in 2 people. A huge total of over £21M has been raised since the fund opened, helping thousands of individuals in need.
These are some of the reasons that Moore is named the Golden boy of his era, and a legend in his own right.
Bobby Moore. Twenty-seven years gone, but forever a legend.