Tommy Smith auctions off his medals
Medals won by former Liverpool defender Tommy Smith will be auctioned today.
Smith, who was known as the Anfield Iron, is selling the prized collection, which includes league title, FA Cup, UEFA Cup and European Cup winners' medals.
There are 75 lots in the Bonhams auction in Chester which are expected to fetch in the region of £120,000.
There is also a full England cap and 20 shirts worn during big games.
Smith, 66, joined Liverpool as a schoolboy in May 1960 and made his debut on May 8 1963.
Renowned for his uncompromising defensive style earning him a reputation as a hard man, Liverpool manager Bill Shankly once said: 'Tommy Smith wasn't born, he was quarried.'
Smith recently said: 'I had a wonderful career but the memories I've got are more important to me than the medals and the shirts," Smith said.
'I'm getting old and the money is of more use to me now than the medals. This is about me putting my family first.'
Winners medals and framed shirts make up the bulk of the items that will go under the hammer, but he insists there will be no sentiment nagging at him to change his mind and keep them.
He remains proud of what he achieved with the club but says preparing for the future takes precedent now.
He said: 'It's something I've been thinking about for a long time. I had them all packed up in the loft and then a few years ago I moved them to a bank for safe keeping.
'It's not as if I've been used to having my medals all out on display at home and seeing them every day.
'I hadn't seen them for about two years as they were in the bank and I just thought what the hell are they doing there?
'They are worth an awful lot of money but no-one is benefiting from them all just sitting there. It's not helping me and it's not helping my family.
'It was absolutely brilliant to win all those medals. I had a wonderful career and everyone knows I gave everything I had for the club.
'But the memories I've got are more important to me than the medals and the shirts.'
The medal collection will go under the hammer in a sporting memorabilia sale at Bonhams' Chester saleroom.
Other highlights include the shirt worn by Diego Maradona in his final international appearance for Argentina at the World Cup in Boston in June 1994.
NEWSFLASH: And what did the former Anfield legend get?.......................
One of Liverpool's greatest ever defenders sold his medal collection today and raised £137,272.
Tommy Smith, who became known as the Anfield Iron because of his fierce approach during 638 appearances for the club, auctioned 75 items.
These included league title, FA Cup, Uefa Cup and European Cup medals. There was also a full England cap and 20 shirts worn during big games.
Smith, now aged 66, watched the sale at Bonhams in Chester.
He said: "I'm delighted with the way the auction went.
"I've done this not because I'm on my uppers, but because I'm getting older and I need to think about my family and my ability to help them in the future.
"I was really touched by the spontaneous round of applause everyone in the room gave when I stood up to shake the hand of the auctioneer and thank him.
"The fact is, I may have sold my medals, but I have so many wonderful memories of winning them with Liverpool, and those memories will never ever leave me."
Each lot was sold individually. The items that fetched the most were Smith's cup winning medals.
The medal he received as an FA Cup winner in 1965 went for £15,000, while his 1977 European Cup winning medal fetched £14,375.
Other highlights included two shirts he wore in the 1965 and 1974 FA Cup finals, which went for £9,375 and £7,500 respectively.