Stan Anderson RIP
By Rob Nichols
Monday 11 Jun 2018 12:17:00
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Such sad news today with the death of former Boro manager, Stan Anderson at the age of 85. Stan was my first Middlesbrough manager and famously built almost all the team that Jack Charlton moulded into Second Division Champions. As a gifted player he wore the England shirt with pride in a career spanning all three north eastern giants, he captained them all. As a manager he believed in a passing game, principles he refused to compromise. A giant of the north eastern game.

Stan Anderson was a football visionary. If you read his (auto) biography he was well ahead of his time in how he believed football should be played. He stuck to his principles throughout his career. A member of the England 1962 World Cup squad he learned so much from that experience.

Stan played for all three north eastern clubs. Arriving at Boro towards the end of a glittering career he took over as player manager as the club was at its lowest ebb, dropping like a stone into the third tier. He turned the whole place around, cutting adrift players that weren't up to the task and signing the likes of John Hickton and John O'Rourke. It was a team that stormed to promotion before a 40000+ crowd in a fantastic finale v Oxford United.

He had an eye for a good player, did Stan, signing all Jack Charlton's champions apart from Bobby Murdoch. He nurtured some of Boro's all time greats, the likes of Platt, Craggs, Spraggon, Maddren, Boam, McMordie, Mills, Armstrong, Hickton, Foggon, Gordon Jones, Willie Whigham, going back to Arthur Horsfield, Derek Downing, Billy Gates, Hughie McIlmoyle, John O'Rourke. So many childhood heroes, poster boys on bedroom walls and names that kids would readily take in playground games.

And don't forget Nobby Stiles. Before Jack Charlton arrived we had another 1966 World Cup winner in our ranks as a diminutive skipper.

Stan Anderson saw the striking potential in defender John Hickton, a small money signing from Sheff Wed. He would become an all time great barnstorming goalscorer at Boro. Stan would set bad boy Graeme Souness on the straight and narrow after whisking him away from the bright lights of the city at Spurs. And in Willie Maddren he nurtured one of the greatest defenders ever to pull on the red shirt of Middlesbrough FC.

As we are about to embark on a World Cup in Russia we must sadly pay our respects to a former manager that learned a football philosophy while watching, talking and learning as part of the squad in Chile. He then took us back from relegation and despair and surfed a wave of triumph after the England 1966 World Cup win.

Stan Anderson gave us some of the greatest names and headiest times in Boro's history. A captain and hero at Sunderland and then Newcastle, Stan was a giant of north eastern football. Never to be forgotten.

Stan Anderson RIP




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