The Players


Home Football Articles Book Reviews Memorabilia Notice Board Obituaries The Managers Great Matches The Players Great Teams The Characters The Statistics Contact Us Footballer Ancestors Soccer Milestones Football Trivia Football Forum Links

Search for:

Up
Football Articles
Book Reviews
Memorabilia
Notice Board
Obituaries
The Managers
Great Matches
Great Teams
The Characters
The Statistics
Contact Us
Footballer Ancestors
Soccer Milestones
Football Trivia
Football Forum
Links

Casino Games - GamblingReview.com
US Online Casinos

Try online betting  when you're watching history in the making.  A long shot could lead to big money!

If you're interested in betting on football and other sports online you may be interested in playing at an online casino site. With so many online casinos to choose from it's best to read several online casino reviews before you play.

 

Interested in soccer trivia?  

Visit the newest and best soccer trivia website at www.soccertrivia.org.uk 

Football and the First World War

I am currently writing a book on Football and the First World War based on the article of the same name on this website.

I am very keen to contact any football fans who have information about players who joined the army during the First World War.

Please contact me at

 

See reviews of Rob Cavallini's The Wanderers FC, and Around The World In 95 Games.


Gordon Banks

A World Cup winner in 1966, Gordon Banks was considered by football fans as the greatest goalkeeper in the world and, for many, he will always be the greatest ever.

At six-foot one and thirteen-and-a-half stones, Banks had the ideal physique for a goalkeeper. The strength in his upper body and arms had been inadvertently developed in his youth, when he worked as a bagger at a local coal merchants.

At club level, after starting his career at Chesterfield Gordon was on the losing side in the 1961 and 1963 FA Cup Finals, but won the League Cup with Leicester in 1964. By then Alf Ramsay had become England manager and selected him for his second match in charge of the team - the first of Gordon’s 73 international caps. England lost only nine of their 73 matches with Banks in goal - conceding only 57 goals, a miserly average of just 0.78 per game with 35 clean sheets.

Gordon joined Stoke City in 1967 for £50,000 and helped Stoke win their first trophy in their history in 1972 - the League Cup against Chelsea - and he was voted ‘Footballer of the Year’ the same year.  He underlined his claim to be the greatest goalkeeper in the world four years later in Mexico with one extraordinary piece of athleticism and skill, which Pele - the victim of his brilliance - later described as ‘the greatest save I have ever seen'.  When the great Brazilian made contact with a powerful downward header at the far post, he was so convinced that it was going in, he shouted 'Golo!'  After scampering across his goal, Banks palmed the bouncing ball over the bar at full stretch.  ‘It was incredible that he managed to push the ball over the bar,' Pele said later. ‘A split second later it would have been in. I've never had such a surprise in football.'  The next day the Mexican newspapers nicknamed Banks ‘El Magnifico'

Still an automatic choice for his country since his debut in 1963, Banks had recently signed a new six-year contract with Stoke when he was involved in a head-on collision that resulted in the loss of sight in his right eye. He was forced into retirement but remarkably, five years later, he made a comeback overseas, playing for Fort Lauderdale Strikers. In 1977, at the age of 39 and despite the handicap of his impaired vision, Banks was voted the best goalkeeper playing in the United States soccer league.

A statue of the legendary goalkeeper was was unveiled at Stoke City's  Britannia Stadium in July 2008 by Pele. The legendary Brazilian striker joked: "I score more than 1,000 goals in my life, but the goal I don't score they remember."