Shropshire's Wolves legend Billy Wright is left off FA anniversary crest

Telford | News | Published:

Shropshire legend Billy Wright is one of several shock omissions from the FA's newly-unveiled tribute to its 150 years of football in England. 

England's most capped captain was left out of the 32 selected images on the new crest. Also missing are joint top England scorer and World Cup winner Sir Bobby Charlton, and revered former England manager Sir Bobby Robson.

The FA's new mosaic-style crest

Centre-half Wright, who was born and brought up in Ironbridge, was the first footballer in the world to win 100 caps for his country and captained England a record 90 times in 105 appearances.

Among those who did make the cut into the final 32 were Gary Lineker – England's joint top scorer with Charlton – David Beckham, Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney, as well as women's team manager Hope Powell and an image of Geoff Hurst's 1966 World Cup final hat-trick.

Ex-Wolves player Ron Flowers, a member of the 1966 World Cup winning squad and who made 476 appearances for the Molineux club, said Wright was a disappointing omission.

"If there was someone who needed to be thought of it would be Billy Wright," said the 78-year-old.

"He was the first player to get 100 caps and doesn't get a mention, that's not very nice.

"I'm very surprised about that. Looking at the people who have been mentioned it's very disappointing for Billy's family.


"He was captain as well, it's a shame and disappointing."

Roy Waterfield, chief executive of Shropshire FA, said: "It would be great to see a Shropshire icon on the imagery and it would be interesting to see how they decided which moments to choose.

"It would be a difficult job to choose 32 images from 150 years of such rich history."

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The gold crest is made up of iconic images from the history of English football, ranging from the early internationals between England and Scotland in the 1870s through to the opening of the new Wembley Stadium in 2007.

The Matthews Final, when Blackpool beat Bolton Wanderers 4-3 and which became famous for the outstanding performance of Blackpool winger Stanley Matthews, is also pictured.

But there is no Wright, who was awarded a CBE for services to football in 1959 and managed the England youth team.

He skippered Wolves to victory in the 1949 FA Cup and won the League Championship in 1958 and 1959 before retiring later that year.

Wright, England's fifth highest capped player, went on to manage Arsenal for four years between 1962 and 1966 and steered them into Europe for the first time in their history in 1963.

He was made an honorary member of the FA and was appointed to the Wolves board in 1990, serving until he passed away in 1994.

Robson is also out despite leading England to their best World Cup finish since winning it after taking them to the semi-final in 1990.

The ex-Newcastle boss made 257 appearances for Albion, scoring 61 goals, in a five-year spell and earned 20 England caps. He won the UEFA Cup with Ipswich in 1981 and became England manager in 1982 after succeeding Ron Greenwood.

The FA have won the right to host the Champions League at Wembley in May as part of their celebrations and International friendly matches against Brazil, Scotland and the Republic of Ireland have been arranged at Wembley, plus a summer tour of Brazil.

FA chairman David Bernstein, who was officially launching the anniversary year today, said they want to capture the imagination of the nation.

He said: "Our 150th year will be a major opportunity for us to showcase our work to the whole country and the wider world.

"It is a terrific achievement for any organisation and I certainly hope that it will capture the imagination in the way it has mine.

"From humble beginnings to today's global spectacle, we can be proud of this country's contribution to football."

The famous names and events on the FA?logo:

1876 – Early international match between England and Scotland

1889 – First black professional footballer, Arthur Wharton

1905 – First £1,000 player transfer, Alf Common, from Sunderland to Middlesbrough

1908 – First FA Charity Shield, played between League champions Queens Park Rangers and FA Cup holders Manchester United at Stamford Bridge. United won 4-0 in a replay after the first match ended 1-1.

1908 – The FA pick the Olympic Squad for the London Games

1923 – First FA Cup final at Wembley between Bolton Wanderers and West Ham United, which became known as the 'White Horse' final

1936 – Joe Payne scores one of his 10 goals in a match for Luton Town against Bristol Rovers, a Football League record

1938 – FA 75th anniversary match, England v Rest of Europe

1953 – The Matthews Final, when Blackpool beat Bolton Wanderers 4-3, famous for the outstanding performance of Blackpool winger Stanley Matthews

1957 – Stanley Matthews plays for England at the age of 42

1962 – England manager Alf Ramsey

1966 – Shot of Bobby Moore lifting the Jules Rimet Trophy after England beat West Germany 4-2 in the World Cup final at Wembley

1966 – Geoff Hurst scoring hat–trick in World Cup final

1972 – The Centenary FA Cup final between Leeds United and Arsenal

1973 – Underdogs Sunderland beat Leeds United in the FA Cup final

1974 – Don Revie as England manager

1980s – John Barnes playing for England

1980s – Viv Anderson

1982 – Bryan Robson scores in the World Cup finals

1990 – Gary Lineker signalling to the England bench that Paul Gascoigne should be taken off in the World Cup semi–final

1998 – England women's manager Hope Powell

2000s – Steven Gerrard

2000 – Last match at the original Wembley Stadium, when Germany beat England 1–0 in a World Cup qualifier

2001 – Sven Goran Eriksson is appointed England's first foreign manager

2002 – England lose to Brazil in the quarter-finals of the World Cup

2002 – David Beckham celebrating scoring against Argentina in the World Cup

2004 – Wayne Rooney celebrates goal against Croatia at the European Championship

2005 – Arsenal winning FA Cup final against Manchester United in Cardiff

2007 – The opening of the new Wembley Stadium

2008 – Champions League final between Manchester United and Chelsea, first featuring two English teams

2009 – Women's European Championship final between England and Germany

2011 – The launch of the FA Women's Super League

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