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Saturday, 30 November, 2002, 13:18 GMT
English football's finest honoured
Sir Bobby Charlton
Sir Bobby Charlton is one of those honoured
The National Football Museum is launching a Hall of Fame to honour the greats of the English game.

The first group of inductees features 23 players and six managers selected by a panel of 20 experts.

Membership is open to people of any nationality as long as they had made a significant contribution to English football.

The Hall of Fame is launched at a charity dinner on 1 December, hosted by BBC Sport's Ray Stubbs, at which several of those chosen will be present, including Sir Bobby Charlton.

"It's a great honour," said the former Manchester United midfielder and 1966 World Cup winner with England.

"If you look at the names included I have to say I couldn't argue with them.

"They are all great players and people I would love to have played with.

"And I think it's great that the Museum has secured the Hall of Fame for the benefit of future generations of both footballers and supporters."

The Hall of Fame is, like the National Football Museum, based at Preston's Deepdale Stadium. New members will be added each year.


First inductees

Managers: Sir Matt Busby, Brian Clough, Sir Alex Ferguson, Bob Paisley, Sir Alf Ramsey, Bill Shankly.

Players: Gordon Banks, George Best, Eric Cantona, John Charles, Sir Bobby Charlton, Kenny Dalglish, Dixie Dean, Peter Doherty, Duncan Edwards, Sir Tom Finney, Paul Gascoigne, Jimmy Greaves, Johnny Haynes, Denis Law, Nat Lofthouse, Kevin Keegan, Dave Mackay, Sir Stanley Matthews, Bobby Moore, Bryan Robson, Peter Shilton and Billy Wright.

Women's football: Lily Parr.

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BBC News' Peter Lane
"This is a tribute to the best in English football"
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