BBC commentator John Motson in the snow in Wycombe in 1990.

One of the most prominent English soccer voices ever has passed away. John Motson called more than 2,000 live matches for the BBC across TV and radio from 1968 through 2008, then continued to commentate on Match of the Day highlights and more before fully retiring from the corporation in 2017. All in all, he covered 10 FIFA World Cups, 10 UEFA European Championships and 29 FA Cup finals, and he was the primary commentator for Electronic Arts’ FIFA game series from 1996 through 2005. The BBC announced his passing Thursday:

And tributes to Motson poured in from across the soccer world:

One trademark of Motson was his sheepskin coat, which he started wearing during a snowstorm ahead of a Wycombe Wanderers-Peterborough United clash in December 1990 (seen at top). The BBC posted a 1999 interview with him reflecting on that:

Many on Twitter also reflected on some of Motson’s most famous calls. That included Hereford’s remarkable upset of Newcastle United in a 1972 FA Cup replay, where Motson’s “Oh, what a goal! What a goal! Radford the scorer. Ronnie Radford! And the crowd, the crowd are invading the pitch!” call launched his career to new heights:

Here’s Motson calling the winning goal in the 1986 World Cup Final, where Diego Maradona set up Jorge Burruchaga:

Here’s Motson’s call of Blackburn Rovers’ 1994-95 Premier League championship, which they won on the last day despite a loss to Liverpool:

And here’s Motson calling a dazzling Paul Gascoigne goal from Euro 96:

Those are just a few of the highlights from Motson’s incredible career. Our thoughts go out to his family and friends.


About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.