Bobby Moore: MNF analysis of his 1966 World Cup final performance
By Adam Bate and Matt O'Brien
Last Updated: 24/02/18 12:38pm
Saturday marks the 25th anniversary of Bobby Moore passing away at the age of 51. Moore was captain of England's World Cup-winning team in 1966 and widely regarded as one of the greatest defenders of all time.
Two years ago, on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the World Cup win over West Germany, a Monday Night Football special paid tribute to the Boys of '66.
Sir Geoff Hurst said he was his hero, Sir Alf Ramsey claims he was the best he ever worked with and England would never have won the World Cup without him. Franz Beckenbauer, an opponent in that 1966 final, called him "the best defender in the history of the game" and Pele agreed. But what made Bobby Moore so special?
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The Monday Night Football special re-examining England's World Cup final win over West Germany in 1966 was an opportunity for older generations to refresh the memory and perhaps a chance for younger people to get a closer look at Moore's extraordinary qualities as a captain, a defender and a footballer.
There were the last-ditch tackles - perfectly timed, of course - and the instinctive sense for danger that led Jock Stein to quip that "there should be a law against him as he knows what's happening 20 minutes before everyone else".
He was everywhere. He is one of the all-time greats.
Jamie Carragher on Bobby Moore
But it was his role in the build-up to England's first goal that caught the eye of Jamie Carragher on Monday Night Football. With the home side a goal down and struggling for the breakthrough, it was Moore who sparked the equaliser. "It comes from Captain Fantastic, Bobby Moore," said Carragher.
With England in possession in midfield, Moore stepped out from the back to offer a pass to Sir Bobby Charlton. "This is what's different now," explained Carragher. "Normally a centre-back wins that ball and stays where he is. He makes the extra man in midfield."
Moore won a free-kick and then got up to take it - finding the head of Hurst. "It's the reaction," added Carragher. "How quickly he's trying to pick the ball up. He's not talking to the referee or getting involved with the opposition. He's looking to get the game started quickly."
That was the first of two assists by Moore. The second was even more remarkable. With his team defending a 3-2 lead in extra-time, the England skipper dealt with a ball into the box and sprang the attack for Hurst to complete his hat-trick.
It's one of the most famous moments in the history of English football and it owes plenty to Moore's trademark calm under pressure. "This is Bobby Moore chesting that down late on in the last couple of minutes of a World Cup final in extra time," explained Carragher.
"He doesn't look to launch the ball forwards. He passes it out and gets it back again. That just sums him up as a player really. This is not a long ball, this is a long pass. There's a big difference."
The touch map and stats from the game highlight what a special performance he put in that afternoon at Wembley. Moore completed 64 passes, more than anyone else on the pitch, with a passing accuracy of 93 per cent - also better than any player on either side.
"He was everywhere," added Carragher. "The number of successful passes for a centre-back and more touches than anyone on the pitch. That sums him up. It shows the influence of why he's revered and not just in this country. You are talking about one of the all-time greats."
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