NATIONAL TREASURE WAS SOLD SO SHORT
ON October 27, 2010, an auctioneer in Edinburgh brought the hammer down at £160,000.
An average weekly wage for the current Premier League footballer was enough to buy Nobby Stiles’ World Cup winners medal.
Just typing the words does not feel right.
Thankfully, the purchaser was
Nobby’s medals – he also sold his
European Cup one – are on display in the club museum.
Stiles was not the only World Cup winner to feel compelled to sell his medals – Alan Ball had done the same five years earlier.
That football and, indeed, people in political power never gave the heroes of 1966 the longlasting support and recognition they deserved is a regrettable matter of record.
Long ago, this newspaper campaigned for the entire team to be knighted.
Somehow, as politicians give gongs to their cronies, that campaign was never won. Disgraceful.
But Sir Alf Ramsey’s players were also never given adequate financial support beyond their playing careers. As national treasures, they should have been.
And one little snippet sums up Stiles and his teammates. When they all met up for an annual get-together – a game of golf, a nice dinner and an overnight stay in a country hotel - they did not try and use their fame to get it for free, or even to make a few quid out of it.
They wanted it low-key, no fuss. And that was Stiles and all the boys of ’66.
Heroes but unassuming – never about the money.