Viv Anderson
Viv Anderson

Viv Anderson

Viv Anderson is one of the most flamboyant full-backs in Arsenal's history - and one of English football's most successful.

The leggy defender had pace, power, a swashbuckling approach to the game and a steely determination to win. And of course he was part of the team which brought the good times back to Highbury with victory in the 1987 League Cup Final.

Profile

Name Viv Anderson
Arsenal Career 1984 - 1987
Position:
Appearances 150 (150 starts, 0 as a sub)
Goals 15

Anderson was one of the few experienced heads in George Graham's squad when they overcame Liverpool 2-1 on that sunny day at Wembley. Indeed, Anderson scored a vital goal in the Semi-Final at Tottenham as Arsenal fought back from a 2-0 aggregate deficit to force a replay and eventually book their place in the Final.

That Cup run summed up Anderson's unflinching spirit and it brought him his first trophy for eight years, but he was no stranger to success. Having signed professional terms for Nottingham Forest in August 1974, he starred as Brian Clough's side won the League title and two consecutive European Cups in the late 1970s. Not surprisingly Anderson was called up by his country, becoming the first black player to represent England in a full international match.

After that Forest team broke up, Anderson looked to revive his career with a switch to Arsenal in 1984. He broke back into the England team as a result and thrived at Highbury, using his years of know-how to help the likes of Tony Adams find their way in first-team football.

Anderson left Arsenal shortly after that League Cup triumph in 1987, becoming Sir Alex Ferguson's first signing as Manchester United manager. He left a void at Highbury which took time to fill as Graham experimented with Michael Thomas and then Nigel Winterburn at right-back before Lee Dixon made the No 2 shirt his own after arriving in the summer of 1988.