Sir Geoff Hurst blog: Manchester Utd could have made me world’s most expensive player…but I have no regrets

We caught up with Grosvenor Goals ambassador and England’s World Cup hat-trick hero Sir Geoff Hurst to talk about the January transfer window,  his potential move away from West Ham United back in the day and how much the World Cup winning squad would potentially cost in today’s money.

Read his thoughts in his latest blog here.

The transfer window is always an exciting time for football fans, and while it might be a tough for clubs as they fear losing a player who is out of contract or looking to leave, it gives a team and their support such a big lift when a player comes in and makes an immediate impact.

“People talk about how transfer windows are there to stop players from moving all the time, and that’s right to a certain extent. However, nowadays the power is all with the player and if they want a move then they tend to go.

“When I played, that wasn’t the case at all. After the 1966 World Cup, West Ham received an offer of £200k for me from Manchester United. That would have been a world record fee for a player, which was nice to hear at the time.

“West Ham said no, and that was it. I didn’t make a fuss, because that’s how football was then and the player didn’t get much of a say, but I don’t have any regrets either, as I achieved all my dreams playing for West Ham and England.

Paying more for a certain type of player can be less risky

“An older generation of ex-football players or football fans tend to scoff at the amount of money being spent on players these days, but I believe that if that’s the going rate then clubs have to stump up.

“Despite people saying £60million – £70m is too much for certain players, sometimes it’s better to pay that for proven quality than take a risk with, say, a £20m player.

“Take Virgil van Dijk, for example. He moved to Liverpool last year for around £75m and has been a huge success – he could be the difference this season and help them win that crucial first league title in 29 years.

“Former Liverpool player Dominic Solanke, who is a promising young home-grown player, signed for Bournemouth for around £20m, but he could go one way or the other, couldn’t he? He’s unproven thus far, so paying a lot more for a proven player can be less risky in this market.

Bobby Moore, Bobby Charlton and Jimmy Greaves? Priceless.

“I’ve been asked before how much some of my 1966 England teammates would cost if they played today, and it can be tricky to answer but they would be up there with world record transfers.

“Gordon Banks was the best goalkeeper in the world at that time, and if he was playing now he could have been worth £70m or £80m, no question.

“Bobby Charlton – who was an unbelievable player for club and country – had an incredible record at Manchester United and England, and goodness knows what he would go for these days.

“In Bobby Moore, there were very few players of that stature at the time, and he was captain for West Ham and England. I think he was priceless then and he would be priceless in today’s era too.

“Jimmy Greaves is another one. He might not have played in the World Cup final, but I can’t even think what he would have been worth today. A rare talent who knew how to score all sorts of goals.

“If you had to talk figures for those last three players in particular, then you would say that they would be well over £100m considering the amount that is being spent on other players today. And I think you could add on another £10m in today’s market for their quality and professionalism.

“I wouldn’t know where to put myself in that bracket, but at one point Manchester United were prepared to pay the world record fee to take me to Old Trafford, so I suppose that would be the equivalent of paying a record fee today.”




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