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By ESPN Staff

England to honour Munich disaster in Swiss friendly

A minute's silence will be held before England's friendly against Switzerland next week to honour the 50th anniversary of the Munich tragedy, the Football Association have announced.

Eight Manchester United players were among 23 people killed in an air crash in Munich on February 6, 1958.

England's match at Wembley falls 50 years to the day after the disaster and the FA have confirmed England players will mark the occasion by wearing black armbands, and that there will be a minute's silence at the match.

FA director of communications Adrian Bevington said he was confident fans of all clubs would respect the silence.

Bevington said: ``We will be having a minute's silence in respect of Munich at the England v Switzerland game.

``We believe very strongly that this should be and will be respected and that there's a feeling across the whole country that a minute's silence is the best and most appropriate way to remember everybody who lost their lives in the tragedy.''

FA chief executive Brian Barwick has spoken with his United counterpart David Gill and club secretary Ken Ramsden to ensure the club are happy with the plans.

Bevington added: ``The players will be wearing black armbands and there will be film on both giant screens of the Busby Babes.

``There will also be a tribute to the Busby Babes in the match programme.

``This was a tragedy for Manchester United in 1958 but we should also recognise there were England players who were lost while representing English football in European competition.''

A number of club officials and eight sports journalists were also killed in the disaster, which happened when the plane crashed while taking off from Munich airport on the way back from a European Cup match against Red Star Belgrade.