Sunderland AFC to pay tribute to Gordon Banks ahead of Accrington Stanley clash

Sunderland AFC will pay tribute to England legend Gordon Banks ahead of the League One clash with Accrington Stanley.

Thursday, 14th February 2019, 2:59 pm
Updated Thursday, 14th February 2019, 3:07 pm
Gordon Banks. Getty Images.

A period of applause will be held at the Stadium of Light prior to kick-off in memory of the 1966 World Cup-winning goalkeeper, who sadly passed away earlier this week aged 81.

Regarded as one of the best goalkeepers of all time, Banks made 73 international appearances for his country and played every game at the 1966 World Cup, which culminated with a 4-2 win over West Germany in the final.

Former Sunderland goalkeeper Jimmy Montgomery has paid tribute to Banks, Montgomery knew Banks well following their time together with England and during their playing days.

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The pair still kept in touch and remained good friends following retirement.

"Banksy was the best in my era and far beyond that," Montgomery told the Echo.

"You look at goalkeepers now and you've got to be 6ft 4 before you're even considered.

"I look at my era and everyone in our era wouldn't get a game these days, Banks, Bonetti, Shilton, there was nobody over 6 foot really.

"But Banksy was just phenomenal, as a goalkeeper and as a man."

Montgomery also remembers sharing a room with Banks when the pair were on England duty, an experience he'll never forget.

"I always remember, I nearly got a cap for England, when Banksy played up at Sunderland got injured on the Saturday and played on the Wednesday, I believe it was against France.

"He played that night and I think we beat France 5-0, I remember I was in the same room which for me was absolutely awesome.

"Fantastic keeper and a fantastic man.

"We spoke on numerous occasions and he was just a lovely man and just so humble."

A club statement added: "Supporters are kindly asked to take their seats early to ensure that full support is given to the tribute."