World Cup legend Sir Geoff Hurst has joined the quest for Bobby Moore’s missing red shirt.
England’s 1966 hat-trick hero is calling for the iconic jersey to be restored to the late captain’s family – after the Daily Mail revealed it was in the hands of an anonymous collector.
Appealing to the new owner, he said: ‘Let’s hope whoever has it comes forward.
‘It’s so important. The most iconic shirt – the shirt of the captain of the World Cup-winning team – the only time we’ve done it. It should go back to his family.
‘I think Mooro – as I used to call him – would want that. He wouldn’t want anything other than that.’
World Cup legend Sir Geoff Hurst (pictured) joins the quest for Bobby Moore’s missing red shirt
Bobby Moore holds the Jules Rimet trophy aloft after England win the 1966 World Cup final against West Germany at Wembley
Sir Geoff – whose third goal in the 1966 win prompted commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme to say, ‘They think it’s all over… it is now!’ – has added his name to the growing support for Moore’s family.
The player’s wife of 24 years, Tina Moore, 79, last saw the No6 shirt in her house, but has been unable to find it for years.
On Saturday the Mail revealed the riddle of how she and their daughter Roberta Moore were recently told it had turned up in the hands of a private buyer – who had bought it at a mystery auction relating to an ‘unknown deceased man’.
They are now appealing for the buyer to come forward. There is no suggestion that he or she has done anything wrong, or bought the shirt in anything other than good faith.
Sir Geoff, 81, who sold his own World Cup top in 2000 for £91,750, told the Mail: ‘I don’t know what Bobby’s family would want to do with it, but it’s theirs and it should be returned to them.
‘That’s my strong view after seeing the campaign in the Mail. I am only too happy to put my name to it.’
Mrs Moore says her late husband – who died from bowel cancer in 1993 at just 51 – gave her the shirt and all his memorabilia when they divorced in 1986.
However, she simply does not know how it went missing from her home in Loughton, Essex. The family used to keep his match shirts in a blue leather bag in their attic, and display his trophies and medals in cabinets downstairs.
The bag is thought to have gone missing in the Eighties or Nineties after the couple split up and Mrs Moore began living between her cottage and Miami. The cottage was empty for periods or was used by friends and relatives.
Sir Bobby’s first wife, Tina, left and daughter Roberta are appealing for the return of the shirt
West Ham legend Moore kissing Tina during a banquet in honour of the 1966 World Cup squad
(L-R) Nobby Stiles, Bobby Moore, Sir Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters celebrate the 1966 win at Wembley
The Football Association and the World Cup-winning skipper’s old club West Ham have also thrown their weight behind the campaign to return the shirt.
West Ham called Moore ‘one of the finest defenders the game has ever seen’, adding: ‘The iconic red shirt he wore to lead his country to World Cup glory is one of the most important items in English sporting history. It would be fantastic to see it back where it belongs for the nation to treasure.’
Former West Ham manager and player Harry Redknapp also backed the Moore family, saying: ‘Bobby was so special to everyone. I know Tina and his family are trying to find his shirt. Let’s hope we can.’
Stan Collymore, the sports pundit and former England striker, said whoever had the shirt had ‘one of the most important symbols of a nation’s sporting pride’.
A series of mysterious clues as to the whereabouts of the shirt were given to the Moore family by the Football Association after the authors of a book on England shirts, Three Lions On A Shirt, unearthed fresh details. They claimed to have discovered the whereabouts of the shirt, but have not revealed who has it, saying the buyer did not want to be named.
Roberta, 58, said that after the Mail broke the story, the family were ‘overwhelmed and so touched by the messages of support we’ve received from concerned fans far and wide’, adding: ‘We are hugely grateful for their warmth, love and respect for my father, and his incredible legacy.’
Do you know who has Bobby’s missing shirt? Call the Mail on 0203 615 2913 or email email@example.com