Football legend Nobby Stiles' World Cup medal has sold at auction for nearly £200,000 - and the buyer was none other than Manchester United, where 68-year-old Stiles spent the majority of his career. Total sales at the auction reached £424,438.
Despite its widely reported financial woes, it appears that United - owned by American businessman Malcolm Glazer and valued at almost £800 million - understand the value of collectible alternative investments; especially when it is a medal earned by one of its finest-ever players.
Convery Auctions based in Edinburgh handled the sale, to which United's club museum will reportedly pay £188,200 including buyer's premium and VAT. The item's total value is a World Record price for a medal worn by an England squad player.
According to reports, Stiles (pictured as a boy, top right) originally intended to leave the medals to his children, but was unsure of how best to divide them up. Instead, the proceeds from the sale will benefit Mr Stiles' family, with Manchester United fans will be able to enjoy the medals on public display.
Other items in the sale included Stiles' 1966 World Cup cap, sold for more than £35,000, his blue Manchester United shirt worn in the European Cup final against Benfica, sold for £30,582, and Alan Ball's 1966 World Cup final shirt (which Mr Stiles swapped with his teammate) sold for £52,000.
- Learn how you can get pleasure and profit from investing in sports memorabilia
- Click here for all the latest Memorabilia news
Join our readers in over 190 countries around the world - sign up for your free weekly Collectibles Newsletter today