George Best’s 17 Most Iconic Quotes

A look back at the Manchester United icon's legendary wit.

George Best was a force of nature as both a footballer and a man.

An incredible talent who battled his fair share of demons, he’s best remembered for his efforts on the football pitch as well as his witticisms off it.

Here are just a few of George Best’s most memorable quotes.



On going missing…

“I used to go missing a lot… Miss Canada, Miss United Kingdom, Miss World.”



On enjoying the best of both worlds…

“If you’d given me the choice of going out and beating four men and smashing a goal in from thirty yards against Liverpool or going to bed with Miss World, it would have been a difficult choice. Luckily, I had both.”


On giving up drink…

“I’ve stopped drinking, but only while I’m asleep.”


On David Beckham…

“He cannot kick with his left foot, he cannot head a ball, he cannot tackle and he doesn’t score many goals. Apart from that, he’s all right.”


On retiring from the game…

“It is typical of me to be finishing a long and distinguished drinking career just as the government is planning to open pubs 24 hours a day.”



On wasting his money…

“I spent a lot of money on booze, birds and fast cars. The rest I just squandered.”


On giving it all up…

“In 1969 I gave up women and alcohol – it was the worst 20 minutes of my life.”


On Cristiano Ronaldo…

“There have been a few players described as the new George Best over the years, but this is the first time it’s been a compliment to me.”


On Paul Gascoigne…

“I once said Gazza’s IQ was less than his shirt number and he asked me: ‘What’s an IQ?'”



On burning the candle at both ends…

“People always say I shouldn’t be burning the candle at both ends. Maybe they haven’t got a big enough candle.”


On watching himself on TV…

“I found it difficult to watch myself playing on TV because I couldn’t identify with the person on the screen. I couldn’t get to grips with it. It was as if it was all happening to someone else.”


On Alcoholics Anonymous…

“I might go to Alcoholics Anonymous, but I think it would be difficult for me to remain anonymous.”



On Pelé …

“Pelé called me the greatest footballer in the world. That is the ultimate salute to my life.”



On being born with a gift…

“I was born with a great gift, and sometimes with that comes a destructive streak. Just as I wanted to outdo everyone when I played, I had to outdo everyone when we were out on the town”


On those Miss World rumours…

“They say I slept with seven Miss Worlds. I didn’t. It was only four. I didn’t turn up for the other three.”


On Eric Cantona…

“I’d give all the Champagne I’ve ever drunk to be playing alongside him in a big European match at Old Trafford.”


On his legacy…

“They’ll forget all the rubbish when I’ve gone and they’ll remember the football. If only one person thinks I’m the best player in the world, that’s good enough for me.”

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