Sir Geoff Hurst

Profile: Things you didn't know

The lawnmower man

On the day after his hat-trick made history, when every reporter and photographer wanted to find Geoff Hurst, where was he? At home, mowing the lawn! [read more]

A united front?

In late 1966, Matt Busby put in a bid of £200,000 for Geoff Hurst. The bid was double the record at that time. Busby telephoned from Poland, where United were playing in the European Cup. Ron Greenwood sent a now famous telegram in reply. It read: 'Busby, Manchester United, Gornik. No. Greenwood.'
(Robert Galvin, the author of Football's Greatest Heroes)

A matter of choice

Alf Ramsey selected Hurst as his first-choice in the attack for six years between 1966 and 1972, the longest run of any forward during his time as manager.
(Robert Galvin, the author of Football's Greatest Heroes)


The fans called Geoff 'Puffer' at West Ham United because of his habit of puffing out his cheeks when he kicked the ball. "It was just a habit," Geoff says, "I wasn't aware I was doing it!".

Three degrees

In university degrees, a 'Geoff Hurst' is rhyming slang for a First.
And, just for the record:
A 2:1 is known as an Attila the Hun
A 2:2 is known as a Desmond Tutu
A Third is known as a Douglas Hurd or a Thora Hird

Double trouble

It was way back in 1968 but Sir Geoff Hurst remains the most recent British-based player to notch a double hat-trick in a top flight league match. On 19 October, 1968, Geoff scored a double hat-trick during a game against Sunderland at Upton Park. The match resulted in an 8-0 victory - the other two goals were scored by Bobby Moore and Trevor Brooking.

Ronald Atkin of The Observer wrote: "Hurst was allowed to keep the matchball as a momento, which was only proper since he had it for most of the afternoon." [read more]
(With thanks to Danny McGeevy for bringing our attention to this one.)

His cup floweth over

Geoff holds the record for the most goals scored in the Carling Cup, formerly known as the League Cup. He shares the record of 49 goals with Ian Rush (but Geoff scored his goals in fewer games).

Hat trick heroes

Who was the next footballer to score a hat-trick for England after Geoff Hurst in the 1966 World Cup final?

The next hat-trick for England in a full international after the 1966 World Cup final was by none other than Geoff Hurst - in a 5-0 victory over France at Wembley in March 1969. Since then 12 different men have completed international hat-tricks for England, the most recent being by Jermain Defoe against Bulgaria at Wembley in September 2010. Gary Lineker scored five hat-tricks (including two lots of four goals), one behind Jimmy Greaves' England record of six. [read more]

(Question sent in by Malcolm Banks)

The aftershock

Source: Sir Geoff Hurst / National Football Museum

It wasn't until the celebratory banquet in the evening that Geoff realised he had scored a hat-trick in the World Cup Final. Having assumed that the final whistle had been blown before he'd struck the ball into the net for his third goal meant he had not attempted to get the match ball as a souvenir, which hat-trick scorers traditionally do. Haller, scorer of the Germans' first goal, acquired the ball and was seen holding it as he collected his runner's up medal. He returned it to England... 30 years later!
[read more]

Gordon Banks' favourite save

While his wonder save against Pele in the World Cup ranks as his best, Gordon Banks has consistently felt his save in a League Cup semi-final second leg at Upton Park in December 1971 was his most significant.

It was a penalty save in the dying moments of extra-time which, had he failed to make, would have seen Stoke exit the League Cup and never accomplish that famous Wembley win over Chelsea some three months later.

And who should step up to take the penalty? None other than his 1966 World Cup-winning colleague, Geoff Hurst.

"Geoff had taken a penalty in the first leg at Stoke and I had pushed it into the side of the goal. This time, I gambled he would send it the same way - and he did.

"I shoved my hands into the air and put the ball over the bar. Stopping Geoff was special and it was the first penalty he'd ever missed."
[read more]

Sir Geoff Hurst

Sir Geoff Hurst MBE secured a unique place in the history of football in 1966 when he became the first and, for more than 56 years, the only player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup Final.

Sir Geoff says that he 'had a great run', nevertheless he remains the only player to score a 'perfect' hat-trick and the only to be on the World Cup winning team.

Knighted in 1998 and inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2004, Sir Geoff holds a special place in the hearts of football fans across the world and, perhaps surprisingly, this includes Germany!