Three lions on a shirt

Jules Rimet still gleaming

Thirty years of hurt

Never stopped me dreaming

– Three Lions by The Lightning Seeds with Frank Skinner and David Baddiel

The decades of hurt plaintively recalled by Skinner and Baddiel on the eve of the Euros in 1996 have crept remorselessly onwards. It is now more than 50 years since England, inventors of the game, last won a major international football tournament. Russia 2018 is upon us and the Three Lions are about to have another shot at glory.

But while the English may have invented the game, they did not invent the World Cup. That was the work of Jules Rimet, the Frenchman who gave his name to the statuette that Bobby Moore rather shyly held aloft as he was carried on his teammates’ shoulders in the Wembley sunshine all those years ago.

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