Jack Charlton dead at 85

He was a hero for England and a hero for Ireland. Not many can boast of such things in any realm, not least sport. Jack Charlton, "Big Jack," is dead at 85 and the Irish, English and sporting world in general is in mourning. Charlton was a member of the World Cup winning English side in 1966 together with his brother Bobby and for his entire league career was a defender for Leeds United, a team now on the cusp of securing promotion to the Premier League. Charlton took the helm of the Republic of Ireland team in February, 1986, and led the side and its passionate followers on a glorious ride through the late 1980s and into the 1990s. Charlton took the "Boys in Green" to their first ever World Cup finals in 1990 and all the way to the quarter-finals. Before that he had led Ireland to the Euro 1988 finals, a competition that included a memorable win over England. Charlton was in charge when the Republic secured a berth in the 1994 World Cup finals in the U.S. and delivered another never to be forgotten win over Italy at Giants Stadium. Charlton resigned the Irish job in January, 1996 leaving behind a legacy that ensured Irish hero status for an Englishman. Jack Charlton was married to Pat Kemp and was the father of three children. File photo from RollingNews.ie.

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