Sir Tom’s prized England blazer badge goes up for auction

The Three Lions badge from Sir Tom Finney's first England blazer is up for sale.

The embroidered decoration that the wing wizard wore before and after his international debut against Ireland in Belfast in 1946 will go up for auction in Liverpool tomorrow (Wednesday).

Adam Partridge Auctioneers have put an estimate of up to £3,000 for the rare item of sporting memorabilia. Bids are already into four figures.

The badge - and the blazer - were given by Sir Tom to one of his four sisters for her son. The badge was eventually passed down to a niece who has now put it up for auction.

The Three Lions badge off Sir Tom Finney's first England blazer.

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The auction catalogue says: "The vendor is his niece, she remembers Sir Tom giving his first blazer to his sister to give to his nephew who is in need of a blazer.

" 'You better take the badge off or I will be in trouble, I don't need this anymore because they have given me a new blazer.’

"The vendor's mother removed the badge, wrapped it up and put it away. It was recently rediscovered and framed."

Tom Finney proudly sporting his England blazer.

Also in the frame is a photograph of Sir Tom in his England playing kit and signed: "Best wishes to Madge, Tom Finney." Madge was his eldest sister.

And there is also a shot of him in army uniform from his war service.

Finney made his England debut on September 28, 1946, just four weeks after he had made his professional debut in a Football League match at Deepdale against Leeds United in which he scored once and made two others in a 3-2 win for Preston.

On his international debut for England he also scored one of the goals in a 7-2 victory at Windsor Park, Belfast. He later described it as his "proudest day as a footballer."

Tom Finney as a young England player.

He went on to play for his country 76 times, scoring 30 goals. In October 1958 he again scored to become the country's all-time top scorer - a record which lasted just two weeks.

His good pal Nat Lofthouse also reached 30 goals to share the title, only for Bobby Charlton to surpass them both in October 1963.