Football legends to pay respects to Sir Bobby

DOZENS of famous faces from the world of football will congregate at Durham Cathedral on Monday to celebrate the life of former Ipswich Town manager Sir Bobby Robson.

Josh Warwick

DOZENS of famous faces from the world of football will congregate at Durham Cathedral on Monday to celebrate the life of former Ipswich Town manager Sir Bobby Robson.

Among those expected to pay their respects are current England boss Fabio Capello, former international strikers Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer, fellow footballing knight Sir Bobby Charlton and Italia '90 adversary Franz Beckenbauer.

A number of stars who played under Sir Bobby at Portman Road have been invited while his family, including Lady Elsie Robson and sons Andrew, Paul and Mark, will also be at the service.

The 76-year-old, who died of cancer in July, was laid to rest following a private ceremony last month.

Live footage of Monday's proceedings will be beamed back to Ipswich and shown on a big screen on the Cornhill.

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Shops in the town have been encouraged to deck out their windows in blue and white for the occasion, while Ipswich Buses drivers will be wearing Town shirts on the day.

The service is expected to last for around an hour-and-a-quarter and will feature a series of tributes.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that Ipswich Town and Newcastle United have been given special dispensation to wear shirts commemorating the life of Sir Bobby when they meet next weekend.

The Football League has given the two clubs permission to wear the kits for the game at Portman Road a week today.

Afterwards, the shirts will be auctioned to raise money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, the charity founded in his name to help fund cancer research.

Earlier this week, Lady Robson revealed that more than �156,000 had been donated to the foundation since his death.

She said the family had been “completely overwhelmed” at the public outpouring of grief and flood of tributes.

Sir Bobby was born in Sacriston in County Durham and grew up in the neighbouring village of Langley Park. Last December, he was given the Freedom of Durham in recognition of his achievements in football and his charity work.

The honour came after he was awarded the Freedom of the Borough of Ipswich in May 2008.

A spokesman for Newcastle United said: “It will be a very moving and special occasion and, as a son of Durham, it is extremely fitting that Sir Bobby's service will be held at Durham Cathedral.”

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