ONE of the last surviving members of Wanderers’ 1953 FA Cup final side, Harold Hassall, has died at the age of 85.

The inside forward, born in Tyldesley, won five England caps and played for Bolton at Wembley in the famous Stanley Matthews final against Blackpool.

He joined Wanderers for a record £27,000 in January 1952 – a sum that was only surpassed 15 years later when the club bought midfielder Gareth Williams from Cardiff City for £50,000.

Hassall died on Friday after battling illness, and still living locally at the time of his death, supporting his former club.

Hassall played once for his country as a Bolton player, turning out against Ireland in November, 1953.

His career at Wanderers lasted just three years, in which he made 109 appearances and scored 34 goals.

It ended on New Year’s Day 1955 with a knee injury sustained playing against Chelsea, leaving him unable to play professionally again.

His benefit game against an England XI in April 1957 attracted 20,000 people to Burnden Park.

Hassall worked for the Football Association, coaching England’s youth team in 1958 and also reporting on games at the 1966 World Cup for FIFA.

Before playing for Wanderers, Hassall starred for Huddersfield Town between 1948 and 1952.

He lived in Bolton, and later worked as a PE lecturer and worked with the Amateur Swimming Association.

Hassall’s death leaves Doug Holden as the only surviving member of the 1953 cup final team.

Wanderers said in a club statement: "Bolton Wanderers are saddened to hear of the passing of former player Harold Hassall.

"Harold passed away on Friday after battling illness. He still lived locally and was actively supporting his beloved Bolton Wanderers through his later years.

"Harold was born in Tyldesley on 4 March 1929. He would go on to represent Huddersfield before then playing over 100 games, including the 1953 FA Cup final, for Bolton Wanderers.

"During his time at Bolton he also represented England on the international scene.

"Everyone at Bolton Wanderers would like to pass on our deepest condolences to his family and close friends at this difficult time.

"Further details regarding the club’s tribute to Harold will follow in due course."