The National Football Museum Hall Of Fame aims to celebrate and highlight the achievements of the all-time top English footballing talents, as well as non-English players and managers who have become significant figures in the history of the English game.
New members are added each year at a special induction ceremony. From 2002 events took place across the country, but since 2013 the annual ceremony takes place at the National Football Museum's Hall of Fame in Manchester.
To be considered for induction players must be either retired or, in exceptional cases where a playing career is still ongoing, be at least 30 years of age. All inductees must also have played/managed for at least five years in England.
In 2007, two new categories of induction were established alongside the players, managers and female players' categories. Chiefly, this was in recognition of football's central role in English culture, extending Hall of Fame honours to those whose main contribution to the English game has been outside the more obvious field of play. The Community Champion category – sponsored by the Football Foundation – honours professional players who have donated their spare time and money to the grassroots level of the sport, while the Football for All Award – sponsored by the Football Association – is presented to pioneers of the various forms of football played by disabled people.
Since 2009, the Museum now also commemorates whole teams alongside its awarding of individual players and coaches. The criteria for their induction is that they must have played at least a quarter of a century prior.
The National Football Museum Hall Of Fame awards are sponsored by the Professional Footballers' Association.
The Selection Panel
The National Football Museum Hall of Fame Selection Panel is made up of some of the greatest names in the game. The inaugural panel brought together in 2002 comprised:
Sir Trevor Brooking (Museum Vice-President)
Mark Lawrenson (Museum ambassador)
In subsequent years Graham Taylor and Steve Hodge have joined as expert panelists.
In addition all living inductees into the Hall of Fame automatically join the Selection Panel. The panel grows each year and currently comprises:
Tony Adams, Viv Anderson, Ossie Ardiles, Debbie Bampton, Gordon Banks, John Barnes, Peter Beardsley, David Beckham, Colin Bell, Dennis Bergkamp, Liam Brady, Ian Callaghan, Eric Cantona, Jack Charlton, Sir Bobby Charlton (Museum President), David Clarke, Ray Clemence, George Cohen, Pauline Cope, Gillian Coulthard, Stephen Daley, Kenny Dalglish, Matt Dimbylow, Robbie Earle, Sir Alex Ferguson (Museum Vice-President), George Ferguson, Trevor Francis, Paul Gascoigne, Ryan Giggs, Sylvia Gore, Dario Gradi, Eddie Gray, Jimmy Greaves, Alan Hansen, Thierry Henry, Glenn Hoddle, Mark Hughes, Roger Hunt, Sir Geoff Hurst, Pat Jennings, Steve Johnson, Cliff Jones, Roy Keane, Kevin Keegan, Howard Kendall, Denis Law, Francis Lee, Matt LeTissier, Gary Lineker, Sue Lopez, Jimmy McIlroy, Frank McLintock, Michael Owen, Sheila Parker, Martin Peters, Hope Powell, Niall Quinn, Bryan Robson, Ian Rush, Peter Schmeichel, Paul Scholes, Brenda Sempare, Alan Shearer, Teddy Sheringham, Peter Shilton, Graeme Souness, Marieanne Spacey, Nobby Stiles, Mike Summerbee, Graham Taylor, Terry Venables, Patrick Vieira, Karen Walker, Ronnie Watson, Arsene Wenger, Ray Wilson, Ian Wright, Gianfranco Zola
Since 2007, a number of eminent football historians have been asked to join the panel to advise on players and teams from the early years of the game.
Currently, the historian panel also includes:
David Pearson, Dr Martin Polley, Dr Neil Carter, Dr Peter Holme, Gary James, Kevin Moore, Prof Dick Holt, Prof Dil Porter, Prof John Hughson, Prof Jeffrey Hill, Prof John Williams, Simon Inglis, Dr Alexander Jackson, Prof Graham Kelly, Prof Tony Collins, Prof Tony Mason, Prof Dave Russell, Prof Matthew Taylor and Dr Jean William.
As we look to the future of the Hall of Fame, with its permanent home at the National Football Museum in Manchester, we'll also look at ways that fans can have their say in honouring the greats of the game.