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John Charles Football Medal for Bonhams Sporting Memorabilia Auction

A 1957-58 Italian league winner’s medal, awarded to Welsh international footballer John Charles, is to be sold at Bonhams, Chester as part of its sale of Sporting Memorabilia on 16 June. It is expected to fetch £8,000 – 10,000.

Charles, who was one of the first British professional players to be signed for an overseas team, joined Italian club Juventus F.C. in 1957 for a then record transfer fee of £65,000. In his five years at Juventus he scored 93 goals in 155 matches, and he was voted the best-ever foreign player to play for Juventus by the club’s fans.

The sale also features Geoff Hurst’s spare shirt (estimate £6,000 – 8,000) from the 1966 World Cup final, in which he scored three of the four goals in England’s 4-2 win over West Germany at the old Wembley, and made World Cup history as the only player to have scored a hat-trick in a World Cup final.

Another important lot is a pair of Stanley Matthews boots (estimate £6,000 – 8,000) that he wore in a testimonial match played in his honour on April 28, 1965 at Stokes Victoria ground in front of 35,000 spectators. He had played his final game in February of the same year. The boots, which come with a note from Matthews stating “Yes, my old soccer boots”, were given to one of the players at the end of the game, who passed them to the vendor.

Other highlights include a 1951 FA Cup final winner’s medal presented to Newcastle’s Jack Fairbrother (£5,000 – 7,000); and a 1955 FA Cup final winner’s medal awarded to Newcastle Captain Jimmy Scoular (estimate £5,000 – 7,000), who had previously won First Division winner’s medals with Portsmouth in 1948/9 and 1949/50.