• Germany edition
 
Broken-neck football hero Bert Trautmann dies
Photo: DPA

Broken-neck football hero Bert Trautmann dies

Published: 19 Jul 2013 17:38 GMT+02:00
Updated: 19 Jul 2013 17:38 GMT+02:00

"He was a wonderful sportsman and a real gentleman. He came as a soldier and therefore as a wartime foe to England and became a celebrated hero there. He was a legend during his own lifetime. His extraordinary career will remain in the history books forever," German Football Association (DFB) president Wolfgang Niersbach said on Friday morning.

Trautmann was captured as a German paratrooper in World War II, passed away Friday morning at his home, near Valencia, Spain, and had been voted the 1956 English player of the year following his Wembley heroics.

He wrote himself into English football folklore after being injured diving at the feet of Birmingham City striker Peter Murphy with 17 minutes left of the Wembley final. As no substitutes were allowed in that era, Trautmann played on despite considerable pain and made crucial saves in the game's dying stages to preserve City's 3-1 lead.

His neck was noticeably crooked when he collected his winner's medal and three days later an X-ray revealed he had dislocated five vertebrae, one of which was fractured in two, and the injury nearly cost him his life.

Trautmann later said the collision with Murphy had felt "like a plane crash".

"Bert was a true club legend in the best sense of the word," said Manchester City in a club statement.

"He was one of the greatest City goalkeepers of all time and a wonderful ambassador, not only for his country, but also for Manchester City.

"For anyone who knew him, Bert will be sorely missed, just as he will by the entire football world."

A decorated veteran of the Eastern Front in World War II, who was later captured having served in Normandy following D-Day, Trautmann was held as a prisoner-of-war in Lancashire until 1948 where he started playing football.

He went on to make 545 appearances for City, who he played for until 1964, and moved into management after his career, first with lower-division sides in England and Germany, and then managed national teams in Burma, Tanzania and Pakistan.

Trautmann later received an OBE for promoting Anglo-German understanding through football in 2004, and in 2008 was similarly decorated by the DFB.

AFP/ The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
World Cup 2014
Berlin chosen to host World Cup victory parade
Berlin's Fan mile. Photo: DPA

Berlin chosen to host World Cup victory parade

Preparation has been the key so far to the success of Germany’s football team in the World Cup in Brazil, and that forward planning has extended to choosing where to celebrate, should Germany be crowned champions on Sunday. READ  

Germany expels US spy station chief in Berlin
The roof of the US Embassy in central Berlin. Photo: DPA

Germany expels US spy station chief in Berlin

UPDATE: Germany has asked the United States's spy station chief in Berlin to leave the country in retaliation for the latest espionage scandal, marking a new low in recent relations between the countries. READ  

TUI cancels all Israel trips amid violence
Photo: DPA

TUI cancels all Israel trips amid violence

Germany's biggest travel group, TUI, said on Thursday it had called off all tours through Israel until the end of the month over the recent eruption of violence in the region. READ  

World Cup 2014
Flood of goals hit firms' World Cup giveaways
An employee at Büsch bakery poses with a poster promising a free bun for every German goal. Photo: DPA

Flood of goals hit firms' World Cup giveaways

Businesses in Germany which tried to tap into the nation’s World Cup fever with free giveaways and discounts for every goal have been left counting the cost after Germany’s 7:1 rout of Brazil. READ  

EU court rules against German language test
German skills are no longer demanded of Turkish spouses. Photo: DPA

EU court rules against German language test

The European Union Court of Justice ruled on Thursday that Germany couldn't make spouses of Turkish residents take a German language test to receive a visa. READ  

World Cup 2014
Löw relishes Argentina clash in World Cup final
Messi lies in wait for Germany. Photo: DPA

Löw relishes Argentina clash in World Cup final

Germany will face Argentina in the final of the football World Cup on Sunday, after Lionel Messi and his teammates beat the Netherlands in a penalty shootout in the semi-final on Wednesday night. READ  

Have Your Say
Berlin or Frankfurt for World Cup parade?
Klinsmann and Löw celebrate in Berlin in 2006 but Frankfurt's Römer square is also in the running. Photos: DPA

Berlin or Frankfurt for World Cup parade?

If they win the World Cup - and that "if" has become smaller after beating Brazil - Germany must choose between Berlin and Frankfurt for their victory celebration. The debate is already heating up. Which one should it be? READ  

Police drag refugees from Berlin TV tower
Police outside the tower on Wednesday. Photo: DPA

Police drag refugees from Berlin TV tower

Police used force to clear protesting refugees from Berlin's television tower late on Wednesday as far-right activists held a counter-demonstration at the popular tourist site. READ  

Schäuble: US spying in Germany 'stupid'
Wolfgang Schäuble. Photo: DPA

Schäuble: US spying in Germany 'stupid'

UPDATE: Germany’s finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, described US spying in the country as “stupid” on Wednesday night, as the government sharpened its tone towards the United States. READ  

MP: I took crystal meth to improve performance
Michael Hartmann. Photo: DPA

MP: I took crystal meth to improve performance

A top Social Democrat politician on Wednesday admitted he took crystal meth, but said he only did it to improve his performance at work. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Magic 7: Seven great German sporting triumphs
Photo: DPA
National
Stunned, euphoric Germany hurtle to final
Photo: DPA
Sport
International reaction: 'Brazil humiliated and humbled'
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Fans celebrate victory over Brazil
Photo: DPA/Wikipedia
Gallery
Nine things you didn't know about Germany and Brazil
Photo: DPA
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Germany stun Brazil in World Cup
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Ten best expat jobs in Germany: Which one would you chose?
Photo: DPA
National
Cloaked 'assassin' spooks German town
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Top 10 reasons why Germany is better than France
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
Three obstacles for foreigners in Germany's job market
Photo: Europeana.de 1914 - 1918
Gallery
A German soldier's life behind WWI lines
Photo: Shutterstock
Features
Some of the most embarrassing mistakes you can make in German
Photo: obs/AXE Unilever Deutschland
Gallery
The wives and girlfriends of Germany's football stars
Photo: DPA
Sport
Where to watch the World Cup in Germany
Education
Raising the bar for law & business in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Hassle-free tax preparation for Americans in Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual school turning education on its head
Sponsored Article
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,279
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd