LONDON – Ray Wilson, a member of England’s World Cup-winning squad, has died at the age of 83, one of his former clubs said on Wednesday.
Wilson joined Everton from Huddersfield Town in 1964 and two years later would help the club, and his country, to the pinnacle of sporting success in a memorable summer.
“Unquestionably one of the finest footballers to wear the royal blue jersey, Ray passed away on Tuesday evening, aged 83, at The Bell House care home in Huddersfield,” Everton said in a statement.
Wilson played left-back in England coach Alf Ramsey’s starting team that beat West Germany 4-2 in the 1966 final at Wembley.
At 31, Wilson was the oldest player in the squad to celebrate the win in London.
He also helped Everton lift the 1966 FA Cup, the highest trophy in English soccer, in a match that saw the Liverpool team overturn a two-goal deficit to beat Sheffield Wednesday 3-2 in the final.
Wilson played 154 matches for Everton before joining Oldham Athletic in 1969.
Derbyshire-born Wilson, who also played for Bradford City, had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
“He was a regular supporter at home match days alongside his eldest son Russell despite battling Alzheimer’s disease,” Huddersfield said.
“He is a World Cup winner and played in the last England team that had four, maybe five, world-class players. He was certainly one of those,” said former Everton forward and manager Joe Royle.