Thousands of fans and prominent figures from the world of soccer gathered in Manchester to bid farewell to Bobby Charlton, the legendary Manchester United player. Charlton, who passed away at the age of 86, was remembered as one of England’s greatest players and as a humble and fantastic man. Among the attendees were former United manager Alex Ferguson, former players Andy Cole and Paul Scholes, England manager Gareth Southgate, Prince William, and UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin. The private service took place at Manchester Cathedral, where Charlton’s former teammate Alex Stepney praised his character and humility. Despite the blustery weather, a large crowd of fans lined the streets to pay their respects as Charlton’s funeral cortege passed by Old Trafford. The cortege paused in front of the Trinity Statue, which commemorates Charlton, George Best, and Denis Law, the trio that helped United win the European Cup in 1968. Bouquets and scarves were laid around the statue as a tribute to Charlton. Current United players Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw attended the service, while others were absent due to international duties. The England team’s arrival at their training base was delayed to allow Southgate, Maguire, and others to attend the funeral. Former United captain Steve Bruce hailed Charlton as the greatest English footballer and praised his character. Another former United captain, Bryan Robson, described it as a sad day for football and expressed his admiration for Charlton as both a player and a person. The ceremony included tributes from former United executives and a personal tribute from Charlton’s family. Hymns, including “Abide With Me,” were sung during the service. Charlton’s legacy includes being a key figure in England’s 1966 World Cup-winning team, making 758 appearances for United, and winning numerous titles.
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