Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland shirt George Best wore when sent off for throwing mud at referee sells for £22k

By Dick Barton

A Northern Ireland shirt worn by George Best in Belfast 47 years ago has sold for £22,000 at an auction - more than double the price it had been expected to fetch.

The long-sleeved number 11 shirt was worn by the Belfast man in the Home Nations Tournament match against Scotland at Windsor Park on April 18, 1970, when he was 23 years old.

Best received his first red card for Northern Ireland after he threw mud at a referee during the 1970 game.

Scotland beat Northern Ireland 1-0.

After the match the shirt was acquired by the Northern Ireland team coach driver, who then gave the shirt to a boy who played for the Hillsborough junior football club.

When the shirt was auctioned at Bonhams in Chester in 2008,it sold for £2,760.

It was snapped up at Graham Budd Auctions in London yesterday by a mystery bidder for £22,000.

In May this year, a short-sleeved Northern Ireland shirt worn by Best for the World Cup qualifier against Switzerland at Windsor Park on October 14, 1964, sold at Graham Budd Auctions in London for £17,000.

Meanwhile, a Northern Ireland international cap awarded to Belfast-born Jimmy Quinn, whose goal against Romania in 1985 helped Northern Ireland qualify for the 1986 World Cup finals, sold for £600 at the auction.

The cap was awarded to Quinn during the 1986-1987 season.

Quinn was 26 years old and a Blackburn Rovers player at that time.

He scored 12 goals in his 46 matches for Northern Ireland and one of the most important of these was the goal he scored in the 1-0 win in a World Cup qualifier against Romania in Bucharest on October 16, 1985.

Belfast Telegraph

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