England Greats

England Greats: Jimmy Greaves

Modern football is all about money. Whether it’s non-league clubs unable to find £70 to replace a light fitting, Manchester City supporters taking umbrage at the cost of a ticket for their team’s visit to the Emirates, or Fernando Torres being sold for £50m, the almighty dollar is never far away.

But the truth is that football has only one currency that matters, and, as far as England Greats go, few men have mastered goals more richly than Jimmy Greaves.

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England Greats

England Greats: Billy Wright

Last time England played at Wembley, the Football Association honoured its five centurions to echo FIFA’s commemoration of the world’s 100-capped players. Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore, Peter Shilton and David Beckham were all given or celebrated with a special cap to mark their achievements in the famous white shirt of England. But for many it is the least capped of the five, arguably the greatest of the England GreatsBilly Wright – who stands tall amongst even these giants of English football. His daughter, Babette Wright, was present on June 2nd to collect her father’s latest posthumous reward.

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England Greats

England Greats: Kevin Keegan

Not all England Greats enjoy the international careers their ability and reputations deserve. The 1970s were a notoriously slim period for England, whose FIFA World Cup exit in 1970 ended their spell as world champions and began a decade of qualifying campaigns that did nothing whatsoever to lift the increasingly disillusioned political mood at home.

Kevin Keegan‘s England career overlapped with the team’s darkest decade, but he remains a player we should look back upon with a good deal of pride.

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England Greats

England Greats: Alan Shearer

There are football supporters, England supporters, who are old enough to accurately judge Alan Shearer – the latest in the England Greats series – by the quality of his punditry but young enough to not remember just how good a player he was. Sure, they’ve seen a few highlights and might be able to recall his last couple of seasons, but the extent to which he was arguably the last of his kind will be lost on more than a few Match of the Day viewers.

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England Greats

England Greats: Stan Mortensen

World War II had an effect on football just as it did any other walk of life, practically anywhere in the world. The latest subject of the England Greats series knew that better than most. Stan Mortensen was one of countless players whose club and country careers suffered between 1939 and 1945 and part of the crew of a Wellington bomber that crashed in Scotland during the war, killing two of his colleagues and leaving another with only one leg.

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