I did have an idea to celebrate 40 years since 1966. I wanted to get 11 poets to write 11 poems about the team of ’66. However, I couldn’t get a publisher or sponsor interested, so in the end I wrote a series of poems myself. They are everyman recollections that try and capture something of the men, the magnitude, the mood and the memories. You can click on the names on the image to see the poems.

( For Bobby Moore )

Immaculate, unflustered,
Cool, calm and collected,
Gentleman Captain.

Unfussy, understated,
Never under rated,
Quiet leader, by example.

Perfectly timed tackles,
The great Pele kept at bay,
Mutual respect as shirts were exchanged.

Everything just right, never out of place,
Even when it was nearly all over,
3 – 2 up in extra time.

Instead of safety first and row Zed
You found the hat trick hero in waiting
With elegant precision

Some of the crowd were on the pitch
Thinking it was all over
And very soon it was, thanks to you.

And that image remains forever,
Carried on the shoulders of fellow champions,
Jules Rimet in your hands and you, gently smiling.

No contorted grimace of exaggerated victory.
No clenched fist posturing.
No macho posing or cartoon badge kissing.

Instead, the celebrations of a true leader.
You set an example,
You led by example,

You remain an example.
Exemplary and true,
We only wish there were more like you.