Sefton Samuels: iconic football photographer’s pictures of Man Utd & City legends go on show in city

From George Best to Sir Matt Busby and packed stands at Maine Road, Sefton Samuels had it all caught on camera - now you can see his best work at the National Football Museum.

Football photos by one of Britain’s most iconic photographers have gone on display at the National Football Museum.

Sefton Samuels witnessed sporting history through the lens of his camera and now visitors can experience it too.

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The 90-year-old’s love affair with football began as a kid growing up in Manchester in the 1940s. As a young city fan, he would sneak his camera into games and from there his passion for shooting football developed, leading him on to capture the likes of George Best, Sir Matt Busby and Bill Shankly.

Manchester City’s Mike Summerbee challenges for the ball (second left) v Newcastle 1969 by Sefton Samuels

Sefton was born in Manchester in 1931. He left Manchester Grammar School at 16, trained in textiles and went to work in mills around Yorkshire. But a camera was never far from his hand.

In 1960, Sefton was named Manchester Evening News amateur photographer of the year and headed back to his native city as it began to swing.

George Best at a shop(1968) Credit: Sefton Samuels

It was during the sixties on the gritty streets of Manchester that he developed his trademark style of poignant photojournalism edged with northern humour.

The exhibition at The National Football Museum features a combination of portrait shots of legendary players and managers alongside stills of football grounds, fans and ball games on the streets of Manchester, a bygone era of when football was football.

When Football Was Football: The Photography of Sefton Samuels 1960s-1980s will run until 31 December.