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Sep 5, 2012

Campbell: Moore deserves knighthood

Bobby Moore is deserving of a posthumous knighthood, according to Bobby Campbell.

Campbell, who was Moore's manager at Fulham, claims in the soon-to-be-released book England Centurions that the defender should be rewarded with title Sir Bobby.

Even though a statue of the World Cup-winning captain has pride of place at the new Wembley stadium, Campbell believes Moore hasn't received the recognition he is due.

In the book, which details Moore's life and honours his 100 caps, Campbell argues: "I don't believe that he received the accolade and credit that he deserved. He should have been moved straight to the FA when he finished playing in just the same way the German FA embraced the Kaiser [Franz Beckenbauer].

"He should have been knighted. Tell me this, if any player captained England to a World Cup triumph in the future, do you think they would be knighted? I am sure that they would. So why wasn't Bobby knighted? In fact, it's not too late. He should be knighted posthumously."

The vastly experienced Campbell, who also had George Best under his command during his managerial career, said: "I have managed some formidable players in my time, but Bobby Moore was the best professional I ever managed.

"To be Bobby Moore's manager and mentor for the time that I managed at Fulham, when he was a player there, I can safely say that he was the best professional I ever managed. If you told him there was a game in Outer Mongolia on Christmas Eve, kick off two o'clock, he would be there at one o'clock boots in hand. He was never late.

"Everything he ever did was immaculate, whether that was in training or in a match - it didn't matter to him. That's the way he was both on and off the field."

Moore, who died of cancer in 1993, was well known for his polite nature, even when he was alleged to have stolen items from a jeweller's in Bogota, Colombia, prior to the 1970 World Cup in Mexico. The defender was detained by police for four days, and was eventually cleared of any wrong doing.

"His manner and his character were top class and he represented West Ham and England as the ultimate pro. He even wiped his hand before shaking the Queen's hand before he received the World Cup trophy and he dealt with the so called 'stealing of the watch' with such dignity.

"As for reaching 100 caps, that in itself is such a wonderful milestone and anyone who makes it to 100 caps deserves to have done so, and that includes David Beckham, another great player. Let's face it David Beckham hasn't done football any harm at all."

•  England Centurions is published on September 11, launched at Wembley Stadium before the England/Ukraine World Cup qualifier. £1 from every book sold will be donated to the Bobby Moore foundation. Bobby's widow, Stephanie Moore, has a message in the book about bowel cancer awareness.

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