Manchester United buy Nobby Stiles's medals

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A World Cup medal and a European Cup medal won by Nobby Stiles have been bought for more than £200,000 by Manchester United.

The World Cup medal which Mr Stiles won in the 1966 final against West Germany was sold for £160,000 at auction.

The 68-year-old's European Cup medal, which he won with Manchester United in 1968, also went under the hammer, fetching more than £49,000.

The sale was handled by Convery Auctions in Edinburgh.

It is a Scottish company which specialises in sporting memorabilia.

Mr Stiles was selling his collection for the benefit of his family.

The 1966 World Cup final medal will cost the buyer £188,200 when premiums, commission and VAT are added.

The price trumped the £165,000 fetched by team-mate Alan Ball's World Cup medal five years ago.

Mr Stiles made a total of £424,438 from the auction at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh.

The collection included Mr Stiles's 1966 World Cup cap, which went for more than £35,000.

The blue Manchester United shirt he wore in the European Cup final against Benfica was sold for £30,582, while Alan Ball's 1966 World Cup final shirt - which Mr Stiles acquired from his team-mate as a swap after the match - fetched nearly £52,000.

He was born Norbert Peter Stiles in Collyhurst, Manchester, in 1942, and was awarded the MBE in 2000 for his part in England's 4-2 victory over West Germany on 30 July 1966.

Image caption,
Nobby Stiles won the European Cup with Manchester United in 1968

Mr Stiles, who suffered a stroke in June, said: "It was always my intention to leave the entire collection to my children.

"But I have three sons - how do you fairly divide up this sort of collection between them?

"They have each selected some pieces they would like to keep for themselves."

Mr Stiles is one of only three Englishmen to have won the World Cup and European Cup - Bobby Charlton and Liverpool's Ian Callaghan were the others - but he was not rewarded in the same way as today's players.

In 1966 he and his teammates got £1,000 for winning the World Cup.

This was reduced to £650 after taxes.

Mr Stiles began playing for Manchester United in 1957 and was paid £3.25 a week.

When he signed for Middlesbrough in 1971 he was paid about £20,000 a year.

In comparison, Manchester United's Wayne Rooney has signed a new contract which is reportedly worth about £28,000 per day.

'Not envious'

Nobby Stiles's son John said he was "pleased" with the sale.

He said: "If you had walked in to my dad's house you would never have known what he had done.

"The shirts were in the loft and the medals were in the bank. Nobody ever saw them.

"So he was going to sell them sooner or later.

"But he was poorly in the summer and that speeded up the process."

Mr Stiles's son said his father, who played in a Manchester United side which included George Best, Denis Law and Bobby Charlton, had loved his football career and was not envious of the rewards given to modern players.

A spokeswoman for Manchester United said Mr Stiles was a "club legend".

She said the items were bought for the club's museum.

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