Pele: Gordon Banks was a magic goalkeeper - and a fine man

Gordon Banks is regarded as one of the finest goalkeepers to ever have played the game. Credit PA

England World Cup Winner Gordon Banks Has Died

"This defines Gordon Banks".

A post on his official Facebook profile read: "For many people, their memory of Gordon Banks is defined by the save he made against me in 1970". Banks was named Federation Internationale de Football Association goalkeeper of the year six times and played 73 times for England.

Along with the World Cup, Banks twice won the League Cup, once with Leicester and once with Stoke.

It said: "It is with great sadness that we announce that Gordon passed away peacefully overnight".

"I had the privilege of becoming good friends with him over the years because we are from the same era and he was an opponent of mine on many occasions.

Our thoughts are with Gordon's friends, family and supporters at this hard time".

Brazil legend Pele has spoken of his sorrow at the passing of former England goalkeeper Gordon Banks, the man whose acrobatic "Save of the Century" denied him a famous goal at the 1970 World Cup in Mexico.

Defender Carlos Alberto had released Jairzinho to sprint down the right before rounding Terry Cooper and clipping a perfectly-weighted cross back through the England penalty area.

"In his 2002 autobiography, Gordon Banks, the only English goalkeeper in history with a World Cup winners" medal, recalls why, when he climbed to his feet after that wondrous save from Pele at the 1970 World Cup, he did so with a chuckle.

Banks spent most of his club career with Leicester City and Stoke City, and he even played in the United States with the Cleveland Stokers in 1967 and the Fort Lauderdale Strikers from 1977-78.

Pele has described Gordon Banks as the "blue phantom" and a "goalkeeper with magic" in an emotional tribute to the England World Cup-winner, who has died aged 81.

Fellow goalkeeper Neville Southall added: "RIP Gordon Banks A incredible keeper and it was a joy to have met and worked with him".

"I can't speak about other eras, but he must be one of, if not the, greatest goalkeeper of all time". Thinking especially of Ursula, Julia, Wendy and Robert.

"We've been expecting his, he has been poorly for a number of weeks but it's a very sad day for us, we love him so much", said Coates. "Will be very sadly missed".

England and Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling tweeted: "Of course there was THAT save, but it's so much more we are mourning today".

Delhi: Massive fire breaks out in hotel, 9 die
Why Steelers wouldn't even consider trading Antonio Brown to Patriots