England World Cup winner Ray Wilson mourned

The English football community is paying its respects to FIFA World Cup-winning left-back Ray Wilson, who has passed away aged 83.

Ray Wilson in training with England in 1962
Ray Wilson in training with England in 1962 ©Getty Images

English football is mourning the death of Ray Wilson, the former Huddersfield Town and Everton left-back who starred for his country when England won the 1966 FIFA World Cup on home soil.

Wilson, at 31, was the oldest starting player in Sir Alf Ramsey's side that beat West Germany 4-2 in the World Cup final at Wembley. He played every minute of England's finals campaign and their eventual triumph sealed a remarkable summer for the Derbyshire-born defender, who two months earlier had helped Everton win the FA Cup with a 3-2 comeback victory over Sheffield Wednesday.

His former national team-mate Sir Bobby Charlton said: "Ray was a great man and he will be missed by so many people. We shared some wonderful memories throughout our career and I had the pleasure of being his room-mate."

Capped 63 times by England including at the 1962 World Cup, Wilson played for Huddersfield Town between 1952 and 1964 before a move to Everton, where he spent five years. He went on to have spells at Oldham Athletic and Bradford City.

Wilson's second career after football was as an undertaker. Awarded the British civilian honour of MBE for services to the game, he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease but continued to attend matches at local club Huddersfield.

Former Everton striker and manager Joe Royle said: "He is a World Cup winner and played in the last England team that had four, maybe five, world-class players. He was certainly one of those. He was the best of his kind at the time. And he was a top guy, always there with a smile or a helpful word."

Top