Paul Gascoigne has given his backing to a global online charity auction in memory of Sir Bobby Robson – while speaking of his delight that his Italia 90 heroics has inspired today’s generation of Three Lions.
Sir Bobby Robson, Gazza and the England team came within a whisker of taking their place in the 1990 World Cup Final – his semi-final tears instead becoming an enduring image in football folklore.
The former England playmaker described Sir Bobby as his “footballing father” and has now backed the Sir Bobby Online Auction which ends on Sunday night and has attracted more than 150 money-can’t-buy items and experiences from the world of sport, celebrity and lifestyle.
The likes of Sir Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho and Barcelona have all given incredible prizes to the amazing international auction while Wayne Rooney donated a limited edition England top commemorating his achievement as the country’s greatest goalscorer – the Manchester United praising the impact of Sir Bobby and his Italia 90 side for shaping his own footballing future.
Gascoigne said: “Sir Bobby was my footballing father, an amazing manager and a true gentleman.
“I am delighted to lend my support to the Sir Bobby’s Online Auction and it is amazing, but not surprising, to see how incredibly successful the auction, and the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, has been in recent years.
“It is great to hear the likes of Wayne Rooney say he was inspired by Italia 90. It might not have ended how we all wanted but it was an unbelievable time in my life and for English football in general.
“That was largely down to Bobby. Legend is often used too much nowadays, but Bobby was legendary in the world of football.
“Whether bidding or spreading the word, please do what you can to support the auction in its final weekend to ensure as much money as possible is raised for some fabulous causes and in memory of Sir Bobby Robson.”
In donating his prize, Rooney said: “I can remember vividly, even though I was only a small boy, the effect he had on the team during the World Cup in Italy 1990 when we came so close to making the final.”
The support of the auction has been incredible and Mark Robson, speaking on behalf of the Robson family, said his Dad likened Rooney to Gascoigne, revealing: “I know Dad would have loved to have had Wayne Rooney in one of his England teams.
“He adored Paul Gascoigne and his genius skills and Wayne is in that bracket. It is great to hear Italia 90 has inspired a generation, including Wayne’s record-breaking achievements.”
The biggest names in football have joined forces to support the Sir Bobby’s Online Auction with FIFA, UEFA, Barcelona, Arsenal and Manchester United all offering a glittering array of money-can’t prizes to raise money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation and In The Game – the League Managers Association Charity, among other charities.
Some of Sir Bobby’s former clubs – Ipswich Town, Newcastle United and PSV Eindhoven – have joined Barca in offering fabulous prizes while the managers he inspired – Mourinho and Andre Villas Boas among them – have donated star auction items.
Sir Alex Ferguson, who himself described Sir Bobby as an inspiration, has donated an incredible sketchbook drawn by Salford artist Harold Riley, who joined the managerial great on his most famous night in football – Manchester United’s dramatic comeback to lift the Champions League trophy in 1999.
You could be watching European giants Barcelona train, take in a once-in-a-lifetime Russian football experience courtesy of Villas Boas or take your seat at either next year’s Champions League final in Milan or Euro 2016 in France.
But it is not just football that is well represented in this year’s Sir Bobby’s Online Auction, which is supported by talkSPORT and has raised more than £700,000 since its inception four years ago.
A chance to take your place in the Sir Bobby Robson Celebrity Golf Classic, on the sidelines at a NFL International Series game or be a VIP at the final of the World Snooker Championships or World Darts Championships is also going under the virtual hammer alongside an original abstract painting depicting the All Blacks’ Haka by renowned artist Ben Moseley.
The money raised from the annual auction has directly helped the fight against cancer, most notably by the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation which the football legend set up in 2008 to support cancer projects and international research into the disease.
This year’s online auction – which takes place between Saturday 14 November and Sunday 29 November – will continue the theme of offering money-can’t-buy items and experiences, launching with more than 140 items from the world of sport, celebrity and lifestyle.
The auction is raising money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, In The Game – the League Managers Association Charity, the GeeWizz charitable foundation and West Suffolk Hospital Charity.
To view the auction, register and place your bid, visit the http://www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auction-catalogues/sir-bobbys-auction.
Some of the amazing sporting items in the auction include…