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Football legends pay tribute at Ray Wilson's funeral

The order of service for the funeral of 1966 World Cup winner Ray Wilson Credit: Press Association

World Cup-winners and other former footballers have gathered for the funeral of former Everton and England team-mate Ray Wilson.

Wilson, who became a national hero as part of Sir Alf Ramsey's team when they were crowned world champions at Wembley in 1966, died last month aged 83. He was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2004.

"He was a lovely guy, a smashing guy," said former England team-mate and goalkeeper Gordon Banks.

"He loved a joke and a laugh and that helped in the dressing room for an international match when you were feeling tight.

"He'd crack a joke or make fun out of something and that would help you to relax, which was so good.

"There are not too many people about like Ray, if you know what I mean. He really was a lovely guy and a super footballer as well."

Ray Wilson pictured at Goodison Park in 1967. Credit: Press Association

Former Everton players Derek Temple and John Hurst represented the club at the funeral.

Sir Bobby Charlton, brother Jack, hat-trick hero Sir Geoff Hurst and Norman Hunter, all members of the England squad which beat West Germany 4-2 at Wembley, were among the mourners who paid their respects to the former Everton and Huddersfield defender.

"Ray probably wasn't as recognised as the other lads, Geoff, Bobby, Bally (Alan Ball) and people like that," said ex-Leeds defender Hunter.

"But as a team-mate you looked at that team sheet and you were very, very happy to have the name Ray Wilson at left-back.

"We got on better as time wears on because the (club) rivalry ceases after a while. It was a bit intense with Leeds United and everything.

"But you get a little bit older and you appreciate the individual more than the rivalry. Ray was world class and you needed that.

"We had Banks, Wilson, (Bobby) Moore, Charlton - I don't care what era you're in, you mention those names and they would have gone into any team in the world, any generation."