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SINCE 1996
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Nobby Stiles

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Very sad to see another one of the World Cup winners gone. Another one with dementia also. Although I saw him play many times I was amazed to see how small he was on the film at the end of the Final. I always had him down as more stocky player than that. Of course he wouldn't have lasted whilst half time in todays football, but that was how it was then. The physical side was part and parcel of the game. Putting that to one side, like Norman Hunter, he was a better footballer than people gave him credit for. I remember when he was just starting out at Utd Bryan Douglas turning him inside out and upside down in a 3-0 Rovers win. Nobby spent all afternoon chasing Dougie without getting near enough to foul him.

He was the player I mentioned a while ago in the beer glass incident a couple of years later at Old Trafford. During a break in play whilst a Rovers corner was being taken somebody threw one of the old dimpled beer glasses down from behind me. By pure luck it landed smack on the cross bar and shattered into a thousand pieces all over the goalmouth. Nobby was for going in to the crowd to find out who had thrown it. He had one leg over the boundary wall when a couple of wiser players dragged him back onto the pitch !

If you've seen that bit of film were he totally wipes out a player in a white shirt that was at Preston in the FA Cup. That was a shocker.

Edited by Tyrone Shoelaces
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