WORLD Cup winner Roger Hunt believes similarities can be drawn between England’s current crop and his teammates who lifted the trophy in 1966.
The former Liverpool striker, who lives in Croft, scored 18 times for his country after beginning his career at Stockton Heath, now Warrington Town.
And Hunt, a patron of the Warrington Wolves Foundation, is eager to see Roy Hodgson’s young guns in action this summer.
“I always follow the World Cups,” he said.
“It’s great to see every four years the best teams in the world.
“Two or three young players have come through this season with their clubs and are looking good. Whether they can transfer that to the World Cup we will have to see, but it’s promising.”
Netting 245 times in 404 games for Liverpool, Hunt still follows the Reds closely and hopes with six players in the squad they can have a similar impact to the West Ham contingent of 1966.
“They played terrific last season, it’s a good thing if they are playing together in the league as they have that understanding,” he added.
“Bobby Moore, Martin Peters and Geoff Hurst, you could see in one or two goals they scored that it came from their understanding – that could be the same this year.”
He is also a fan of Daniel Sturridge and is backing the striker to shine in Brazil.
“He’s really playing in his best position now,” said the 75-year-old. “At other clubs he’s been on the wing. He’s happy when he plays in the middle and the goal he scored (in the friendly) against Peru shows what he’s capable of.
“If you’re a goalscorer then you’re desperate to score because if you’re scoring goals you are happy and it gives you confidence to go on and get another.
“He seems quite mature and with all the goals he scored for Liverpool last season he should be one of our best players.”
Hunt, who works on the Football Pools Panel, admits England could do a lot worse than a draw in their opener with Italy on Saturday.
“That’s what happened to us in ’66,” he explained.
“We thought we had to win the first game but we drew 0-0 with Uruguay, so it’s not a bad result.
“A draw would suit both teams, but the Italians are always cautious so if we could get a win in the first game it would be fantastic.”