Benjamin Odeje
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Recognition for first black England footballer

A young south-east London schoolboy who was called up to play for England in 1971 has been revealed as the first black player to represent the country.

Benjamin Odeje made his debut six years before Laurie Cunningham who holds that distinction, BBC London has uncovered.

The Football Association has now confirmed Mr Odeje was the first black player to represent England at any level.

BBC London reporter Marc Ashdown spoke to the footballer that history books forgot.

  • 24 May 2013