Finding Jack Charlton: What to expect from BBC football hero documentary - and how to watch

A moving portrait of football legend Jack Charlton will be airing on BBC two this evening (Monday, March 29).

Jack Charlton died in 2020.
Jack Charlton died in 2020.

The documentary, named “Finding Jack Charlton”, will reflect on Jack’s career and offer a previously unseen look at his struggle with dementia.

What does the documentary cover?

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The critically-acclaimed documentary covers Jack’s time in the England team when it won the 1966 World Cup, as well as looking at his victories in Ireland’s football team in the 1980s and 90s.

It ranges over his impressive footballing career, looking at the man behind the manager, before moving onto his final years, in which he tragically struggled with dementia.

Key figures from Jack’s life appear in the documentary, including his wife Pat, his brother Sir Bobby Charlton and his son John.

Major figures from the world of music, film, football and politics also appear to talk about Jack’s life and remarkable footballing achievements.

One of the key themes explored is how Jack became a hero in Ireland following a somewhat controversial appointment as the manager of the Republic of Ireland men’s team in 1985.

In one scene, U2 drummer Larry Mullen Jr points out that Jack’s influence led to Republic of Ireland fans reclaiming the Irish flag, which was previously associated with politically-motivated attacks and violence.

“We took that flag back and flew it with pride,” he says in the film.

The documentary was filmed over 18 months before Jack’s death in 2020, and includes some previously unseen footage of Jack and the Ireland team during the 1990 World Cup.

Jack’s family also gave filmmakers access to handwritten notes that the footballer wrote, providing insight into his inner life and managerial style.

How can I watch it?

The documentary will air at 9pm on Monday, March 29, on BBC Two. Afterwards, it will be available on BBC iPlayer.