Posted on Saturday, 22nd May 2010 by Chudi
Somewhere in Northern Ireland there is a mural that reads, Maradona good, Pele better, George Best. It sums up perfectly Man United’s #7 a real footballing great.
United scout Bob Bishop famously told Sir Matt Busby, “Boss, I think I’ve found you a genius” and he wasn’t wrong as Best who turned professional at 17 would go onto to blaze a trail at Old Trafford and in world football that will be remembered forever.
A player of great skill, able to score as well as create chances Pele named him “the greatest player in the world” and his performances reinforced this. From his destruction of Benfica in the 1966 European Cup quarter final to his solo show against Northampton Town in the FA Cup where he scored 6 of the 8 goals.
The accolades matched his talent as he was the club’s top scorer for six consecutive seasons and the First Division’s top scorer in the 1967–68 season as he was named the PFA and European Footballer of the Year as United won the European cup, emphatically beating Benfica 4-1 in the Wembley final.
Best would be troubled by alcohol problems that would affect his career and eventually lead to his death, one of the downsides to being football’s first proper celebrity but on his birthday we celebrate his life and what a wonderful life it was.
Many players have worn the #7 shirt since George and although some came close none have ever quite matched ‘El Beatle’.
So today on May 22nd George would have been 64 so we wish a true United legend happy birthday.