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Banks of England: England World Cup winning goalkeeper Gordon dies aged 81

World Cup-winning goalkeeper with England in 1966, Gordon Banks has died aged 81. Banks played 73 times for England and won a League Cup winners medal while at Stoke, however, in 1972, his playing career was brought to an abrupt end after he met with a car accident and lost sight in one eye.

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World Cup-winning goalkeeper with England in 1966, Gordon Banks has died aged 81. Banks played 73 times for England and won a League Cup winners medal while at Stoke, however, in 1972, his playing career was brought to an abrupt end after he met with a car accident and lost sight in one eye.

Stoke City club issued a statement on Tuesday which read: "It is with great sadness that we announce that Gordon passed away peacefully overnight. We are devastated to lose him but we have so many happy memories and could not have been more proud of him.

"We would ask that the privacy of the family is respected at this time."

Popularly known as Banks of England, he was widely rated as one of the world’s finest goalkeepers alongside contemporaries Lev Yashin and Dino Zoff.

He had denied Pele of a goal at Mexico 1970 which was regarded as the save of the century, but due to illness, he could not be part of the team in the quarter-finals and they lost of West Germany.

“As I got to my feet,” Banks once recalled, “Pelé came up to me and patted me on the back. ‘I thought that was a goal,’ he said. ‘You and me both,’ I replied. The TV footage of the game shows me laughing as I turn to take up my position for the corner. I was laughing at what Bobby Moore had just said to me. ‘You’re getting too old Banksy, you used to hold on to them.’ Like hell I did.”

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