Gordon Banks, England's 1966 World Cup-winning goalkeeper, dies aged 81

Gordon Banks, England's 1966 World Cup-winning goalkeeper, dies aged 81

And ex-England striker Michael Owen has also paid his respects, saying: "Sad to hear that Gordon Banks has passed away at the age of 81".

England's 1966 World Cup-winning goalkeeper Gordon Banks has died aged 81.

"It is with great sadness that we announce that Gordon passed away peacefully overnight", the statement read. We are devastated to lose him but we have so many happy memories and could not have been more proud of him.

During his global career, he won 73 caps and played in two World Cups, and between 1966 and 1971 he was named Fifa's Goalkeeper Of The Year for six consecutive years.

In December, Banks took on the role of "FIFA Legend" to take part in the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup Final Draw in Moscow. "Our thoughts are with Gordon's friends, family and supporters at this hard time".

Former Stoke City goalkeeper Gordon Banks holds the Jules Rimet trophy as he is awarded a a Stoke City shirt before the game.

More news: Republicans mock Green New Deal: 'It's loony'

"Had the pleasure of meeting him a number of times and he was one of the game's true gentlemen, not to mention one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time".

After appearing 293 times for Leicester, the six-time FIFA Goalkeeper of the Year joined Stoke in 1967 and stayed at the club until 1973. "Even though I was on the pitch I still don't know how he saved that header from Pele".

His family said Banks, who lost an eye in a auto crash in 1972, had passed away in his sleep.

England's 1966 World Cup hero Geoff Hurst said: "Very sad to hear the news that Gordon has died".

Fellow goalkeeper Neville Southall added: "RIP Gordon Banks A incredible keeper and it was a joy to have met and worked with him". Thinking especially of Ursula, Julia, Wendy and Robert. "All my thoughts with the family". Obviously we shared 1966 but it was more than that.