Ten years ago today, football lost a true legend
George Best (1946 – 2005) hailed from Belfast in Northern Ireland. For the best part of his career he played as a winger for club and country. George Best won the 1968 European Cup with Manchester United, and was voted European Footballer of the Year as well as FWA Footballer of the Year.
Best was discovered at 15 years of age by a scout who sent through a telegram to manager Matt Busby which said:
“I think I’ve found you a genius.”
The message in the telegram was correct, Best was one of the most technically gifted players to ever play the game.
He made his debut for United aged 17, and then scored 179 goals in 470 appearances over an 11 year period with the club. He was United’s top scorer for five consecutive years. He was also the first superstar in English football and his fame and good looks earned him the title, “The Fifth Beatle” as the Beatles (band) were at their peak while he played football.
Unfortunately, Best had problems with drinking, gambling, and partying, which led to a steep decline in his football career when he should have been reaching his peak. He also died young due to complications with drugs he took for a liver transplant due to years of drinking.
Below are some videos that show what an extraordinary player he was. However, we will always be left to wonder how good he could have been if he was one hundred percent committed to the game. Many today still believe that he could have been the greatest footballer of them all. He certainly had the talent, but sadly not quite the commitment.