- Erik ten Hag will miss Sir Bobby Charlton’s funeral on Monday afternoon
- He has an ‘unbreakable and long-standing commitment in the Netherlands’
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Sir Bobby, who is widely regarded as one of the greatest players to have ever graced the game, passed away at the age of 86 following a battle with dementia last month.
Family, friends, fans and luminaries from across the football world will come together to celebrate Charlton’s extraordinary life on Monday afternoon.
His funeral cortege is set to pass Old Trafford before heading on to Manchester Cathedral for a memorial service. However, Ten Hag will not be attending.
The Dutchman has an ‘unbreakable and long-standing personal commitment in the Netherlands’ meaning he will miss the funeral.
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag (left) will miss Sir Bobby Charlton’s (right) funeral due to an ‘unbreakable and long-standing personal commitment in the Netherlands’
His cortege will pass the ‘Holy Trinity’ statue, which depicts Charlton celebrating a goal with fellow United greats Denis Law and George Best, at around 1.30pm
Sir Bobby’s cortege will pass the ‘Holy Trinity’ statue, which depicts him celebrating a goal with fellow United greats Denis Law and George Best, at around 1.30pm.
A United representative has invited fans and members of the public to ‘pay their respects along the route’ ahead of the service, which begins at 2pm.
The service at the cathedral will be led by Canon Nigel Ashworth and feature eulogies by family members and the club. It will remain private and not be filmed.
Sir Alex Ferguson, Richard Arnold, David Gill, John Shiels, Martin Edwards, Ed Woodward and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will all be in attendance on behalf of Man United.
Current players Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw, Jonny Evans and Tom Heaton will be present to pay their respects, with others will miss the funeral due to international duty.
Former players such as Alex Stepney, Paddy Crerand, John Aston Jnr, Brian Kidd, Sammy Mccllroy, Alan Gowling, Lou Macari, Willie Morgan, Martin Buchan, Bryan Robson and Mark Hughes will also attend.
However, Manchester United’s unpopular owners, the Glazer family, will stay away from the funeral on Monday afternoon amid fears of abuse from the club’s fans.
Current stars Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw will be present to pay their respects. While likes of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Sir Alex Ferguson will all be in attendance on behalf of Man United
However, Manchester United’s unpopular owners, the Glazer family, will stay away from the funeral on Monday afternoon amid fears of abuse from the club’s fans
Football fans from across the world were devastated to hear Charlton, who battled dementia in his later years, died following an accidental fall at a care home in Knutsford, Cheshire.
His family released the following statement at the time: ‘It is with great sadness that we share the news that Sir Bobby passed peacefully in the early hours of Saturday morning. He was surrounded by his family.
‘His family would like to pass on their thanks to everyone who has contributed to his care and for the many people who have loved and supported him. We would request that the family’s privacy be respected at this time.’
Manchester United said ‘words will never be enough’ as they mourn ‘one of the greatest and most beloved players in the history of our club’, while England described Charlton, who had previously held the record as all-time top goalscorer for both England and United, as a ‘true legend of our game’.
Sir Bobby had withdrawn from public life since he was diagnosed with dementia in November 2020, just four months after his elder brother Jack Charlton – another 1966 hero – died aged 85.
The United club legend will be sadly missed with thousands set to pay their respects
Sir Geoff Hurst is now the only surviving member of England’s 1966 World Cup side
The brothers famously had a bitter feud for several decades but made amends later in life. Sir Bobby was, however, unable to attend his brother’s funeral due to illness. He was last photographed in public bravely posing for a Covid-19 jab to encourage others to do the same.
Sir Bobby was one of five of England’s 1966 winners to suffer from dementia after his brother, Nobby Stiles, Ray Wilson and Martin Peters.
The midfielder, who joined United as a schoolboy in 1953, embarked on an extraordinary career after surviving the Munich air disaster – when he was 20 – which tragically killed eight of United’s Busby Babes and 23 people in total.
In a glittering 17-year spell with United – where he played as if every game was for his fallen team-mates – he won three league titles, the FA Cup and captained the Red Devils when they became the first English club to win the European Cup.
Sir Bobby (pictured on the right) seen celebrating England’s 1966 World Cup victory