Monday, May 20, 2024

FAI lead tributes after death of Ireland legend Charlie Hurley (87)

Must read

Born in Cork, Hurley moved to England as a child before earning 40 caps between 1957 and 1969 as a defender, in a playing career that spanned 18 years across spells with Millwall, Sunderland and Bolton Wanderers.

It was at Sunderland where Hurley enjoyed his most successful years, as he was named as the club’s Player of the Century in 1979 having spent 12 seasons with the Tyne and Wear side.

Nicknamed “The King”, he helped the club win promotion to the top flight in 1964, a season in which he came second in the FWA Footballer of the year voting, behind only World Cup-winning England captain Bobby Moore.

He remains one of only 10 Sunderland players to have surpassed 400 appearances. Before arriving at Roker Park, he made 105 appearances for Millwall while his Irish debut came in 1957 in a draw against England at Dalymount Park. He finished his playing career with Bolton where he spent three seasons, while a five-year spell as manager of Reading followed in the 1970s.

Having been inducted into the FAI Hall of Fame in 2007, association president Paul Cooke paid tribute to the former defender this morning.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Charlie Hurley’s family and friends at this difficult time,” said Cooke.

“It is over 50 years since Charlie won the last of his 40 caps but it is a measure of the esteem in which he was held in football that every Irish fan knows of the legend that was Charlie Hurley. We are proud that he played for Ireland and we extend our deepest sympathies to all who knew The King.”

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Charlie Hurley, one of the greatest and most beloved players in the history of Sunderland AFC,” added Sunderland in a statement today.

“Named the Club’s Player of the Century in 1979, The King was a giant in the story of SAFC and his legacy on Wearside will forever endure. Charlie adored Sunderland and Sunderland will always adore him. Our heartfelt sympathies are with his family, and all who loved him.”

“To a generation of Millwall supporters, Charlie was the greatest player to don a Millwall shirt. Everyone at Millwall Football Club would like to send their condolences to Charlie’s family and friends at this very sad time,” said Millwall.

Latest article