FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter has sent a letter of condolence to England’s Football Association Chairman Greg Dyke and the German Football Association President Wolfgang Niersbach upon learning of the death of Bert Trautmann at the age of 89.
“I would like to express my deepest sympathy on learning of the death of legendary former Manchester City goalkeeper Bert Trautmann earlier today,” wrote the FIFA President.
“There are few better illustrations of the power of football to build bridges than Bert, who arrived in England as a prisoner of war and went on to become one of the English game’s best and most famous goalkeepers, as well as being the author of one of the bravest and most famous acts in FA Cup history when he played out the last 17 minutes of the 1956 final with a broken neck,” Blatter continued.
Trautmann rose to footballing fame with Manchester City following the Second World War, where the goalkeeper made more than 500 appearances for the club between 1949 and 1964.
“In his contribution to Anglo-German relations following the Second World War, Bert Trautmann was a prime example of how football can be used to bring people together and forget their differences, one that FIFA is proud to follow in its social development work across the globe,” Blatter wrote.
Following his playing days, Trautmann moved into the coaching ranks where he managed Stockport and German club Preussen Munster. He passed away at his home in Spain Friday morning.
“On behalf of the members of the international football family, I should be grateful if you could extend our deepest condolences to Bert’s family, friends and loved ones,” concluded the FIFA President’s letter to Dyke and Niersbach.