Durham Tribute to Sir Bobby Robson
22nd September 2009
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Thousands of fans and some of the biggest names in football attended a thanksgiving service for Sir Bobby Robson at Durham Cathedral on Monday.

Robson died on 31st July at the age of 76 following a long battle against cancer.

A thanksgiving service was arranged in his native Durham to celebrate the life of the former England and Newcastle manager.

Robson enjoyed an illustrious playing and management career in football, having success with Fulham and West Brom before going on to manage Ipswich, PSV Eindhoven, Sporting Lisbon, Porto and Barcelona and his hometown club Newcastle.

The likes of Sir Alex Ferguson, Fabio Capello and Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola, as well as a host of other famous faces, attended the event.

Sir Bobby fought cancer five times, and devoted his final years to helping others with the disease.

Such was the affection felt for a genuine football man, his target of raising £500,000 was met in just eight weeks.

In February, he was proud to officially open a cancer trials centre at the Freeman Hospital, Newcastle, and he said then that he wanted that to be his legacy.

England and Newcastle star Peter Beardsley said as he arrived for the service: "Sir Bobby was one of the greatest football men of all time.

"He was so close in 1990. Lady Elsie would be so proud."

Other arrivals included current Newcastle United caretaker manager Chris Hughton and players from the first-team squad. Former goalkeeper Shay Given was also among the guests.

Current Ipswich manager Roy Keane walked alone into the cathedral before the service.

Everton manager David Moyes remembered receiving a hand-written letter from Sir Bobby when he was at Barcelona in response to a request by the would-be coach to come to watch training.

Moyes said he still has a copy of the letter at home. He added: "All the Premier League managers look up to Sir Bobby."

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Pam B

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I'm Pam and I run the Best of Durham. Between promoting the best businesses in Durham, I enjoy spending time with my young grandaughter.

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