Thousands of people gathered in Preston yesterday to pay tribute to one of England’s greatest ever players, Sir Tom Finney who passed away on 14 February. Finney spent his entire career playing for Preston North End for whom he made 569 first-class appearances.
Finney’s football career was initially interrupted by the Second World War when he was called up to fight in Italy and North Africa. After the war, he made his debut for Preston North End in 1946, establishing himself as a key member of the squad.
Even as a player, he continued another career as a plumber and the most he ever earned was £20 a week. Such was his importance to the squad that the season after he retired in 1960, the club were relegated from the top-flight of English football.
Finney also had a prolific career for England, making 76 appearances and scoring 30 goals. In 1958, Finney became England’s highest ever goal scorer before being overtaken by Bobby Charlton.
“He was sensational and deserves all the credit that people are giving him. He was well known as one of the great, great footballers and someone you had to see.”