On this Day – 30th July

Gordon Banks
Gordon Banks

On this day in 1966, Leicester City goalkeeper Gordon Banks was part of the England team that won the World Cup, beating West Germany 4-2 after extra time.

Leicester manager Matt Gillies signed Banks from Chesterfield in May 1959 for a fee of £7,000. He made his debut in September of that year, a 1-1 draw with Blackpool in front of 28,089 fans at Filbert Street.

Within a couple of months he’d made the goalkeeper’s shirt his own, and was an important member of the City team that was so successful during the first half of the 1960s. He had to settle for a runner’s up medal in the FA cup finals of 1961 and 1963, but brought a winner’s medal home from his third Wembley final, the 1966 World Cup.

Banks was considered the best goalkeeper in the world at the time, but Leicester had another great goalkeeper on their books, a young Peter Shilton. The club, knowing they couldn’t keep both players happy, opted to sell Banks to Stoke City in April 1967. Banks’ career at the top level ended in 1972 when he lost the sight in one eye in a car accident.

Fans would have to wait until 2018 for the next chance to cheer on a Leicester player playing for England at the World Cup finals.