December 21, 2019 / 5:45 PM / a month ago

England World Cup winner Peters dies, aged 76

LONDON (Reuters) - England World Cup winner Martin Peters has died, aged 76, his former club West Ham United said on Saturday.

FILE PHOTO: Football - West Ham United wreath laying ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the death of Bobby Moore - Upton Park, London, Britain - February 24, 2013 Former team mate Martin Peters during the wreath laying ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the death of Bobby Moore Action Images via Reuters/Steven Paston/File Photo

Peters was part of the 1966 World Cup-winning side and scored in the final against West Germany.

“It is with profound sadness that we announce that Martin passed away peacefully in his sleep at 4:00 am this morning,” said a statement from his family posted on West Ham’s website.

“A beloved husband, dad and grandad, and a kind, gentle and private man, we are devastated by his loss but so very proud of all that he achieved and comforted by the many happy memories we shared.”

Peters is the fifth member of England’s World Cup final team to have died, after captain Bobby Moore, Alan Ball, Ray Wilson and Gordon Banks.

Peters joined West Ham in 1959 as a 15-year-old, made his debut in 1962 and was a key player in the side who won the 1965 Cup Winners Cup final at Wembley.

The midfielder, described by former England manager Alf Ramsey as “10 years ahead of his time” won 70 senior caps for his country. He scored 100 goals in 364 appearances for West Ham before moving across London to join Tottenham Hotspur in 1970 in a deal that saw striker Jimmy Greaves go the other way.

Peters won the UEFA Cup and two League Cups with Tottenham before spells with Norwich City and Sheffield United.

“We extend our sincere condolences to his family and many friends in the game at this sad time. A truly footballing great has left us but his memory will live on,” a tribute on Tottenham’s website said.

Geoff Hurst, England’s hat-trick hero in the World Cup final and a former West Ham team mate of Peters, described him as one of the all-time greats.

“A fellow World Cup final goalscorer and my West Ham partner for years along with Bobby Moore. RIP old friend,” Hurst said.

Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Ed Osmond

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