Willie Anderson (footballer)

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Willie Anderson
Personal information
Full name William John Anderson[1]
Date of birth (1947-01-24) 24 January 1947 (age 70)
Place of birth Liverpool, England
Height 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)[2]
Playing position Winger
Youth career
1962–1964 Manchester United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1963–1967 Manchester United 9 (0)
1967–1973 Aston Villa 231 (36)
1973–1977 Cardiff City 126 (12)
1975 Portland Timbers (loan) 17 (3)
1977–1982 Portland Timbers 160 (13)
1979–1980 Wichita Wings (indoor) 18 (15)
1980–1982 Portland Timbers (indoor) 31 (17)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

William John "Willie" Anderson (born 24 January 1947) is an English former professional footballer. During his career, he made over 350 appearances in the Football League for Manchester United, Aston Villa and Cardiff City before joining Portland Timbers in the North American Soccer League.[3]


Born in Liverpool, Anderson began his career as a youth player at Manchester United. He spent four years as understudy to George Best, becoming the first ever substitute used by the club when he replaced Best in the 1965 FA Charity Shield,[4] and only appeared in twelve first team games for the club, including two cup semi-finals, before being allowed to join Aston Villa for £20,000 in January 1967.[5] A virtual ever-present for Villa for six years, he helped the club to a promotion victory before signing for Cardiff City.

The Bluebirds had failed in attempt to sign him in 1971 but finally managed to agree a deal for him in February 1973 worth £60,000. Anderson became hugely popular at Ninian Park for his performances on the wing during his four years at the club,[6] winning the Welsh Cup twice with the club in 1973 and 1974.[7][8] In 1977, he decided to leave Cardiff to sign for the Portland Timbers in the North American Soccer League who were managed by Eddie Firmani.[9] He remained with the Timbers through the 1982 season, with one indoor season on loan with the Wichita Wings of the Major Indoor Soccer League.[2]


As a player[edit]

Manchester United
Aston Villa
Cardiff City[6]
Portland Timbers


  1. ^ "Willie Anderson". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 1 November 2017. 
  2. ^ a b "Willie Anderson". NASL. Retrieved 19 May 2016. 
  3. ^ "Willie Anderson". Post War English & Scottish Football League A–Z Player's Database. Neil Brown. Retrieved 19 May 2016. 
  4. ^ "Willie Anderson". MUFCInfo. Retrieved 19 May 2016. 
  5. ^ "Willie Anderson". Aston Villa Player Database. Retrieved 19 May 2016. 
  6. ^ a b Hayes, Dean (2006). The Who's Who of Cardiff City. Derby: Breedon Books. p. 14. ISBN 1-85983-462-0. 
  7. ^ "Welsh Cup Final 1972/73". Welsh Football Data Archive. Retrieved 19 May 2016. 
  8. ^ "Welsh Cup Final 1973/74". Welsh Football Data Archive. Retrieved 19 May 2016. 
  9. ^ a b "Rowdies ax Portland 2–0". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 19 May 2016.