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Gary Neville and David Beckham pay tribute to Sir Bobby Charlton after Man Utd legend dies aged 86

Gary Neville and David Beckham pay tribute to Sir Bobby Charlton after Man Utd legend dies aged 86

Neville paid his tribute to the Man Utd icon.

Gary Neville and David Beckham paid tribute to Manchester United legend Sir Bobby Charlton after his passing at the age of 86 on Saturday.

Charlton, who scored 249 goals in 758 games for United, won seven trophies at Old Trafford and lifted the 1966 World Cup with England.

He survived the Munich air disaster in 1958 and was a key figure in leading United's subsequent recovery. He lifted the European Cup a decade later, in 1968.

On an individual level, Charlton won the Ballon d'Or in 1966 before finishing as runner-up in 1967 and 1968.

He ended his playing career at Preston North End, and had a short spell of manager as the club in the 1970s before becoming a director at United a decade later.

Charlton had a constant presence at the club throughout its period of major success under Sir Alex Ferguson.

In a statement, United said: "Manchester United are in mourning following the passing of Sir Bobby Charlton, one of the greatest and most beloved players in the history of our club.

"Sir Bobby was a hero to millions, not just in Manchester or the United Kingdom, but wherever football is played around the world.

"He was admired as much for his sportsmanship and integrity as he was for his outstanding qualities as a footballer; Sir Bobby will always be remembered as a giant of the game."

Now, speaking on Sky Sports, United icon Neville gave his own tribute to Charlton.

He said: "He would come in to the dressing room [as a director] after every match, win lose or draw.

"It's a great loss today, and there's no doubt that he is English football's greatest player, and English football's greatest ambassador more importantly.

"A champion on the pitch and off the pitch."

He added: "When I joined United, Sir Alex Ferguson brought Nobby Stiles and Brian Kidd in - obviously Sir Bobby was a director at the time.

"Those other European Cup winners were brought in to remind us about the club's history.

"The likes of Duncan Edwards and all those who died in the Munich air disaster, and Sir Bobby surviving, it was instilled in you how important it was, when you think of the United blazers the players wear currently, and we wore through the 1990s and 2000s, they were the same blazers the Busby babes wore, and Sir Bobby Charlton wore.

"Those traditions and standards, and everything's that's good about United, I don't think you could have anyone better than Sir Bobby Charlton to represent that."

Fellow former United star David Beckham also penned his own tribute on Instagram, writing: "It all began with Sir Bobby.

"Sir Bobby was the reason I had the opportunity to play for Manchester United... I will be forever grateful to a man I was named after, someone I looked up to and was a hero to many around the world, not just in Manchester and our country where he won the World Cup in 1966.

"A true gentleman, family man and truly a national hero... Today isn't just a sad day for Manchester United and England, it's a sad day for football and everything that Sir Bobby represented."

Featured Image Credit: Getty / Sky Sports

Topics: Gary Neville, David Beckham, Manchester United, Premier League

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