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Jack Charlton’s bitter feud with brother Bobby and tragedy that reunited World Cup legends

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A World Cup winner with England as a player and a hero for the Republic of Ireland as a manager, Jack packed a lot into his 85 years before his passing last year. And the story of his amazing life and achievements will be depicted tonight in the BBC’s ‘Finding Jack Charlton’. As well as following his glistening career in football, the feature-length documentary – filmed during the last 18 months of his life – also gives an emotional insight into the effect dementia had on him.

Despite Jack’s incredible club and managerial achievements – most agree his finest moment was lifting the World Cup trophy alongside brother Sir Bobby and his England teammates in 1966.

But behind that famous photo of the pair hugging was said to be a treacherous relationship.

Jack was outgoing and confident while Sir Bobby was shy and quiet – and their differences reportedly pushed them apart as time went on.

Then, in 1996, a family feud drove the brothers further apart when their mother, Cissie, died and Jack accused Sir Bobby of not visiting her before her death.

Jack Charlton and his brother Sir Bobby had a bitter feud

Jack Charlton and his brother Sir Bobby had a bitter feud (Image: GETTY)

The pair lifted the World Cup with England in 1966

The pair lifted the World Cup with England in 1966 (Image: GETTY)

Jack claimed there had been a clash between Sir Bobby’s wife Norma and Cissie which caused the rift and aimed criticism towards his brother’s wife.

More than a decade later, animosity between the brothers appeared to still be high when Sir Bobby released his autobiography with his side of the story.

He wrote in 2007: “My wife is a very strong character and does not suffer fools gladly. I am not suggesting my mother was a fool.

“There was a clash and it just never went away really.

“Jack came out in the newspapers saying things about my wife that were absolutely disgraceful. Nonsense.”

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The brothers are said to have fallen out over a family disagreement

The brothers are said to have fallen out over a family disagreement (Image: GETTY)

Sir Bobby said his brother made a “big mistake” and that the pair had “stopped seeing each other” since.

He stated: “I just don’t want to know him.”

But the tragic passing of fellow 1966 World Cup hero, Ray Wilson, would reunite the pair once more.

They are said to have put their differences aside to attend his funeral in 2018.

Wilson, often described as England’s greatest ever left-back, died after a battle with dementia, aged 83.

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Both the brothers enjoyed a successful career in football

Both the brothers enjoyed a successful career in football (Image: GETTY)

It was the first time Jack and Sir Bobby had been seen together in years.

Tonight’s BBC film will paint a picture of the pair’s complicated relationship.

In a recording shown in the BBC film, Jack describes his role when they were growing up.

He says: ”I had to look after him during the day and make sure he was OK.

“I didn’t like it. I liked the sea, I liked the countryside and Bobby didn’t. He liked to be around my mother, he liked to be at home.

A documentary on Jack Charlton will be shown tonight

A documentary on Jack Charlton will be shown tonight (Image: GETTY)

“I could have done more things without him than I had to do with him.”

Another recording gives Sir Bobby’s perspective.

The Manchester United legend claims: ”My brother was an uncompromising character.

“I watched him in a derby match – he gave a goal away and they lost.

“I said to him after: ‘You were stupid giving that daft goal away.’ He punched me straight off the back of the couch on to the floor.”

Jack Charlton: Dan Walker shares sweet moment with Bobby

The film paints a picture of what is a complicated relationship between two hugely successful football brothers.

Jack spent his entire 21-year playing career at Leeds, making a joint club record 773 appearances, before retiring as a player in 1973 and going on to enjoy a successful and colourful career as a manager.

He had successful spells in charge of Sheffield Wednesday, Middlesbrough, Newcastle and the Republic of Ireland.

The Englishman spent a decade managing the Republic, leading them to their first major finals – the 1988 European Championship – and the World Cup quarter-finals at Italia 1990.

‘Finding Jack Charlton’ will be shown on BBC 2 at 9pm, before being made available to watch on BBC iPlayer.



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