Bobby Charlton, one of the greatest in English football history, who has risen to legend in Manchester United and the English national team, has been diagnosed with dementia, British media said on Sunday.
Charlma, 83, wife of Norma, according to the Telegraph, gave permission to disclose her husband's health information.
Charlton was one of the most important men on the England World Cup gold team at home in 1966. He held the national team’s goal record of 49 goals for nearly 50 years until Wayne Rooney broke the record.
In United, Charlton won three English championships in both the European Cup and the FA Cup, scoring 249 goals.
In 1958, Charlton was involved in one of the saddest events in football history.
The Manchester United team was returning from a away game trip from Yugoslavia, where it had encountered the Red Star of Belgrade.
After an intermediate refueling in Munich, the plane had difficulty getting into the air and on the third attempt, the plane collided with the airport fence and the house behind it and caught fire.
The Munich accident killed 23 people, including eight Manchester United players.
Charlton flew out of the plane in the accident and survived with relatively few injuries.
Read more: A shocking plane crash crushed the football world exactly 60 years ago: “It was a nightmare”
Charlton was ennobled in 1974 in recognition of his work for English football.
Bobby Charlton (left) has been immortalized in a statue in front of Manchester United's home stadium, Old Trafford, along with two other ManU legends, Denis Law and George Best. Photo: Ilpo Musto
Bobby Charlton’s big brother and World Cup teammate Jack Charlton were also diagnosed with dementia.
Jack Charlton died in July.
Of the 1966 world champions, Nobby Stiles, 78, died on Friday.