England World Cup winner Jack Charlton dies at 85

Former England World Cup-winning player Jack Charlton, pictured above in 2019. (Rui Vieira/AP)

LONDON — Jack Charlton, an uncompromising central defender who played alongside his brother, Bobby, in England’s World Cup-winning side in 1966 before enjoying coaching success with Ireland, has died. He was 85.

Nicknamed “Big Jack,” and celebrated for his earthy “beer and cigarettes” image, Charlton was Footballer of the Year in England in 1967. He spent all his club career at Leeds from 1952-73, tying its all-time record of 773 appearances. He won every domestic honour, including the league title in 1969.

Of all the England World Cup winners to go into management, Charlton was easily the most successful. Hired by Ireland in 1986 as its first foreign coach, he adopted a direct, physical and attack-minded style that guided the Irish to three major tournaments.

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