Ron Flowers, Wolves midfielder and England 1966 squad member, dies at 87

Ron Flowers, a member of England’s 1966 World Cup squad, has died at the age of 87. The former Wolves midfielder played for the club between 1952 and 1967 and helped them to three First Division titles and the FA Cup in 1960.

Flowers played 49 times for England and appeared in 40 consecutive international matches between November 1958 and April 1963, which included the 1962 World Cup in Chile.

He did not feature as Sir Alf Ramsey’s men became world champions in 1966 but received a World Cup winner’s medal at Downing Street in 2009. Initially only those on the field received one, but the rules were changed retrospectively.

A statement on Wolves’ Twitter feed read: “We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of club legend and vice president Ron Flowers MBE at the age of 87. A giant on the pitch and a gentleman off it. There will be many people remembering Ron today and all of our thoughts are with those who knew and loved him.”

Flowers played 515 times for Wolves, placing him fifth on their all-time appearances list. He joined from Wath Wanderers, a Wolves nursery club, made his debut aged 18 and established himself as a key player in the side managed by Stan Cullis.

He left Wolves to join Northampton, where he served as player-manager, and later played for and managed Wellington Town – who became Telford United – and guided the club to FA Trophy success in 1971. He returned to Wolverhampton after his career ended to set up and run a sports shop.

Flowers was awarded an MBE in the 2021 new year honours list. He made his England debut against France in 1955 and was the first England player to score in a European Championship match, converting a penalty in a qualifier against France in 1962.