Former Liverpool and England defender Gerry Byrne, best remembered for playing almost the entire 1965 FA Cup final with a broken collarbone, has died at the age of 77.

"What Gerry did in 1965 was incredible" - Ian Callaghan

Byrne had been suffering from Alzheimer's disease.

The Liverpool-born left-back spent his entire career at Liverpool - his home town club - and made 333 appearances. He was also a member of England's World Cup-winning squad in 1966.

Byrne made 333 appearances for Liverpool and won two League Championships, an FA Cup and a Second Division title. A 40,000-crowd at Anfield for his testimonial in April 1970 was testament to his popularity.

In the 1965 Cup final at Wembley, Byrne fractured his collarbone in the seventh minute after a challenge with Leeds midfielder Bobby Collins. Substitutes were not permitted at the time and Byrne pleaded with the physio not to tell manager Bill Shankly. He then stayed on the pitch for the full 90 minutes and the two periods of extra time that followed.

"What Gerry did in 1965 was incredible," Liverpool's record appearance holder Ian Callaghan told the Liverpool Echo.

"He broke his collarbone early in the match and then played right through the game, through extra time and even crossed for Roger (Hunt) to score the first goal.

"To play almost two hours with a broken collarbone was unbelievable."

Football Association chairman Greg Dyke has paid tribute to Byrne this afternoon, saying he was saddened to hear of his passing. 

"I can still remember the way he helped Liverpool win the 1965 FA Cup ... His determination to play on rather than leave his team down a man was remarkable. My sincere condolences go to his family and friends."