Tributes paid to World Cup ’66 hero and Liverpool legend Roger Hunt
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Hunt, who was also part of England’s 1966 World Cup-winning line-up, scored an unrivalled 244 league goals for the Reds.
The club said in a statement posted on their official Twitter account: “We are mourning the passing of legendary former player Roger Hunt.
“The thoughts of everybody at Liverpool Football Club are with Roger’s family and friends at this sad and difficult time. Rest in peace, Sir Roger Hunt 1938-2021.”
Hunt was born in Golborne, Cheshire on July 20, 1938. He signed for Liverpool in July 1958 and made his final appearance for the club in December 1969.
He was signed by Phil Taylor from non-league Stockton Heath but was kept on by Bill Shankly, and helped the club out of the old Second Division in 1962, going on to win league titles in 1964 and 1966.
He also won the FA Cup with Liverpool in 1965.
Hunt’s overall Reds scoring record was broken by Ian Rush in 1992 but no one has yet scored more league goals for the Merseysiders.
Hunt won 34 caps for England, scoring 18 goals, and earned his first under Walter Winterbottom in 1962 when Liverpool were still in the second tier.
In that season, he scored 41 goals in as many games for the Reds.
Hunt scored three goals in helping England get out of their group at the 1966 finals, and played in every game such was his importance to Sir Alf Ramsey’s team.
Current Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said: “It’s really sad news and our thoughts and our love go to his family.
“Unfortunately, it feels too frequent in this moment we are saying farewell to these giants of our club.
“Roger Hunt comes second to no one in his importance in the history of Liverpool FC, that much is clear.
“To be the goalscoring catalyst of the Shankly team to actually achieve promotion and then go on to win those precious league titles and the FA Cup puts him in a bracket of LFC legends who are responsible for making us the club we are today. Not only that, he was also a World Cup winner in 1966, too.
“I am told the Kop christened him ‘Sir Roger’ for all his achievements. A goalscorer who never stopped working to help his team-mates; I believe he would have fit in well within our current team.
“So, it is Sir Roger we will remember, honour and pay tribute to over the coming days. You’ll Never Walk Alone.”
Former Liverpool striker John Aldridge paid tribute to Hunt, writing on Twitter: “I’m absolutely gutted to hear of the passing away of one, if not THE BEST Lfc strikers SIR ROGER HUNT.
“What a striker and a true Gentlemen, I had the great pleasure of being with him on many occasions. RIP My Nu 1 Legend and Hero.”
Former Reds defender Jamie Carragher added: “RIP Sir Roger Hunt one of the greatest goal scorers our club has ever seen. Sir Roger along with the other Legends from the 60’s made @LFC the club it is today.”
Robbie Fowler, sixth in Liverpool’s all-time record goal-scorers list, simply tweeted: “Rest in peace, Sir Roger Hunt.”
England acknowledged the integral role Hunt played in the nation’s World Cup win in 1966.
The Three Lions tweeted: “We’re extremely saddened to learn that Roger Hunt, who was a key member of our @FIFAWorldCup-winning side in 1966, has passed away at the age of 83. Our deepest condolences go to Roger’s family, friends and former clubs.”
Ex-Liverpool midfielder Jan Molby made reference to another former Liverpool striker, Iain St John, who died earlier this year.
Molby said on Twitter: “Take care of Sir Roger for us Saint. RIP Roger Hunt.”
Liverpool’s Merseyside rivals Everton tweeted their condolences, saying: “Our thoughts are with Roger Hunt’s loved ones and everyone at @LFC at this sad time. RIP.”
One of Hunt’s former clubs, Bolton, tweeted: “We are saddened to learn of the passing of former Wanderers forward and World Cup winner, Roger Hunt. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.”
Former Bolton, Everton and England midfielder Peter Reid said on Twitter: “A star and a wonderful player who helped me as a young apprentice. A World Cup Winner who had time and encouragement to all young players back in the day. RIP.”