On this day: Sir Bobby Charlton makes England debut

Former England and Manchester United footballer Bobby Charlton in the Royal Box before play on day six of the 2012 Wimbledon Championships tennis tournament at the All England Tennis Club on June 30, 2012
© Getty Images
Fifty-six years ago today, Sir Bobby Charlton made a scoring debut for England against Scotland.

Many have tried, but no England international has been able to score more goals for the Three Lions than Sir Bobby Charlton.

From his 106 outings for his country, the attacking midfielder found the net on a record 49 occasions.

It all started for the Manchester United player 56 years ago today, just two months after he had survived the Munich air disaster that claimed 20 lives, including those of eight of his teammates.

Despite that devastation, a 20-year-old Charlton was included in the England starting lineup for the British Championships encounter against rivals Scotland at Hampden Park.

A close fixture was anticipated, what with the winner going on to share the trophy with Northern Ireland, but from the moment that Charlton crossed for Bryan Douglas to head the game's opening goal in the 22nd minute, the visitors dominated the contest.

Then, before the break, Douglas turned provider with a low pass to West Bromwich Albion frontman Derek Kevan, who found the bottom corner of the net.

England's next goal in the 65th minute would prove to be a memorable moment for debutant Charlton. Sir Tom Finney was the architect, crossing from the left for the Man United youngster to send a volley beyond the reach of Scotland goalkeeper Tommy Younger.

There was still enough time remaining in the closing stages for the away side to score a fourth goal through Kevan as he squeezed the ball inside Younger's near post from a narrowing angle.

Yet, it was Charlton's performance that had captured the imagination, so much so that he was taken to the 1958 World Cup by manager Walter Winterbottom. Surprisingly he was not used in Sweden, but he remained a permanent fixture within the squad up until his retirement from international football in 1970.

SCOTLAND: Younger; Parker, Haddock, Evans; Docherty, Ewing; Murray, Forrest, McColl; Mudie, Herd

ENGLAND: Hopkinson; Howe, Langley, Wright; Slater, Clayton; Charlton, Douglas, Finney; Kevan, Haynes

Members of Manchester United board the BEA Elizabethan to Belgrade.
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