Martin Peters, who scored England’s second goal in the 1966 World Cup final against West Germany, has died aged 76 following a long battle against Alzheimer’s disease.
Peters, whose death was announced by former club West Ham, was part of the Hammers trio of captain Bobby Moore and Geoff Hurst, who scored a hat-trick in the 4-2 victory at Wembley, for England’s only World Cup triumph.
Hurst described Peters as “one of the all-time greats”.
“On behalf of everyone at West Ham United, we would like to express our deep sadness at the tragic loss of Martin Peters, one of the greatest figures in the 125-year history of our club,” a statement from the Premier League club said.
“Martin represented everything that we hold dear to our heart at West Ham United a local boy who progressed through the academy ranks, played football with class, skill and determination, and provided out supporters with a host of magical memories over the years.
“The fact that he went on to achieve the pinnacle of the beautiful game by winning the World Cup, along with his West Ham team-mates Bobby Moore and Geoff Hurst, is of course a constant source of pride for our football club and something that will never, ever be forgotten.
“It has been tremendously sad to hear of the health battles Martin had faced in recent years. But he faced them with the same courage and dignity that he showed on the pitch throughout his long and illustrious career.
“The word ‘legend’ is used all too freely nowadays. But Martin Peters is a true legend. A legend of West Ham United. A legend of World football. And his contribution to our club and our game will never, ever be forgotten.”
Peters, who won 67 England caps and scored 20 goals, is the fifth member of England’s World Cup winning side to pass away after Alan Ball, Ray Wilson, Gordon Banks and Moore.
Hurst mourned the loss of Peters, hailing his old team-mate as one of the England’s finest players.
“Today is a very sad day for football and for me personally. Martin Peters was one of the all-time greats and a close friend and colleague of mine for in excess of 50 years,”
“A fellow World cup final goalscorer and my West Ham partner for years along with Bobby Moore. RIP old friend.”