Bobby Charlton

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Sir Robert "Bobby" Charlton CBE (born 11 October 1937 in Ashington, Northumberland) is an English former professional football player who was a member of the England team who won the World Cup and was named the European Footballer of the Year in 1966. He played almost all of his club football at Manchester United, where he became renowned for his attacking instincts from midfield and his ferocious long-range shot. His elder brother Jack, who was also in the World Cup-winning team, is a former defender for Leeds United and coach.

He began to play for Manchester United's first team in 1956, and over the next two seasons gained a regular place in the team, during which time he survived the Munich air disaster of 1958. After helping United to win the Football League in 1965, he won a World Cup medal with England in 1966 and another Football League title with United the following year. In 1968, he captained the Manchester United team that won the European Cup, scoring two goals in the final to help his team be the first English side to win the competition. He has scored more goals for England and United than any other player. He had made more appearances for Manchester United than any other player (758),[1] a record superseded by Ryan Giggs at the Champions League Final in Moscow on 21 May 2008. However, Charlton still owns the club record for most league appearances with 606, and is considered by many to be one of the greatest English players of all time.

At the time of his retirement from the England team in 1970, he was the nation's most capped player, having turned out 106 times at the highest level. This record has since been eclipsed by Bobby Moore, Peter Shilton and then David Beckham.

He left Manchester United in 1973, becoming player-manager of Preston North End,[2] but decided management was not for him and left after one season. After assuming the post of the director at Wigan Athletic for some time, he became a member of Manchester United's board of directors in 1984[3] and remains one as of May 2010. He set goalscoring records for both the England team and Manchester United, with both records remaining intact some 35 years after the end of his playing career. He was knighted in 1994.


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