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England's 5 greatest footballers of all time

England's World Cup winning team of 1966
Subhadeep Roy
Modified 30 Apr 2019
Top 5 / Top 10

England is home of football as the game originated from there. “The Three Lions” or the English national football team played its first international match against Scotland in 1872. Since then, England has given birth to a lot of legendary footballers who have enriched football with their exceptional performances. England is also home to some very big clubs like Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea and most of their great players have played for those clubs.

The English are often criticized for their “kick and run” approach to the game and their players are said to be not as skillful as their French, Spanish or Dutch counterparts. England have won the World Cup only once, when it was held there in 1966. England have traditionally lacked the dour efficiency of the Germans, the defensive brilliance of the Italians or the natural flair of the Brazilians. Still, they have been home to some outstanding players over the decades and we would take a look at 5 of them in this article:

#5 Gordon Banks

Gordon Banks
Gordon Banks

The late Gordon Banks has been immortalized by the otherworldly save he pulled off to keep off a header by Pele in the 1970 World Cup match against Brazil, but there was more to him than that. He was the custodian for the English national team from 1963 to 1972 and earned 73 caps for them. 

He also played in 2 World Cups and 3 European Championships for England. Banks was an excellent shot-stopper and very athletic. He was not a very big man, but made up for his lack of size with his athleticism and agility. He was also reasonably good in the air.

Banks also had a fairly successful club career with clubs like Chesterfield, Stoke City and Leicester City. He began his senior career for Chesterfield in 1958 and retired while playing for Stoke City in 1973.

He made a total of 632 appearances in his cub career and was selected in PFA team of the century. He was also a part of the 1966 World Cup winning England team and remained one of the best goalkeepers in the world throughout 1960s. Banks is most definitely the greatest goalkeeper England has ever produced and also one of its finest footballers. He passed away recently.

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Published 24 Apr 2019, 13:51 IST
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