London

Sir Geoff Hurst's 1966 England World Cup final shirt goes unsold

Geoff Hurst scores England's third goal against West Germany in the World Cup final at Wembley Stadium Image copyright Hulton Archive
Image caption Sir Geoff Hurst scored twice in extra time

The shirt worn by Sir Geoff Hurst in England's 1966 World Cup final victory has failed to sell at auction.

The striker was wearing the red number 10 shirt as he scored his famous Wembley hat-trick against West Germany.

It was expected to fetch up to £500,000, but Sotheby's said the bidding failed to meet the reserve price despite "a great deal of interest".

The victory, 50 years ago, remains England's only World Cup win.

Hurst's third goal, scored in extra time, prompted Kenneth Wolstenhome's BBC commentary: "They think it's all over… it is now!"

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The 1966 victory is England's only World Cup win

Hurst was a prolific goal-scorer at club level, scoring 40 goals in 59 games for West Ham during the 1965-66 season, but he began the 1966 World Cup as a squad member.

He was awarded a place in the starting line-up only when the nation's top goal-scorer, Jimmy Greaves, suffered an injury ahead of the quarter-finals.

Hurst went on to score in the 18th minute of the final, and then twice again in extra time, in England's 4-2 victory.

Sotheby's estimated the shirt would sell for £300,000-£500,000.

It is believed to have been first auctioned at Christies in 2000, when it was sold for £91,750 to a private collector.

It was then bought in 2008 by an Oxfordshire-based property investor Andrew Leslau for an undisclosed sum on behalf of international investors.

Mr Leslau insured the shirt for £1m, calling it "the most important shirt in English football history".

Gabriel Heaton, from the auctioneers, said the shirt represented a "legendary moment in the annals of English football, and a sporting achievement that has never been repeated in half a century."

Image copyright National Football Museum
Image caption The shirt has been on display at the National Football Museum

Where to see 1966 World Cup final memorabilia

  • England's controversial third goal, scored by Hurst, bounced off the crossbar and was ruled to have gone over the line. The crossbar itself is on display at the Wembley Stadium Tour
  • Boots belonging to Hurst and skipper Bobby Moore and the shirt worn by Roger Hunt are on display at an exhibition at the National Football Museum in Manchester. The exhibition runs until April
  • A replica of the Jules Rimet trophy - the original was stolen and recovered by a dog named Pickles - is also on display at the National Football Museum. So is Pickles' collar
  • A standing ticket for the final cost ten shillings (50p). Stubs now fetch up to £200
Image copyright Cattani
Image caption German players protest against referee Gottfried Dienst awarding Hurst's controversial second goal - ruled to have gone over the line after bouncing off the crossbar

More on this story

Around the BBC

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites