11 September 2015

William Anderson

Name: William Anderson
Born: Ballymena
Height:
Weight:
Position: Inside-Forward

Representative Honours: Ireland: 1 Amateur Cap (1947).
Club Honours: (with Ballymena) Irish Cup Runner-Up 1950/51.

Club Career:
Teams
Seasons
Signed
Fee
League
FA Cup
Other
Ballymena United
46/47-47/48
Aug-46
Amateur
33/3
4/0
7/1
Ballyclare Comrades
-
-
-
(Intermediate)
Ballymena United
50/51-51/52
Aug-50
Amateur
14/0
5/1
8/2
TOTALS
-
£0
47/3
9/1
15/3

Biography:
William ‘Nipper’ Anderson, was an immediate post-war inside forward whose exploits in the Intermediate leagues earned him a promotion to senior football with his hometown team, Ballymena United in August 1946.

Recruited by manager William Reid, Anderson was to form part of a new look Ballymena side who had returned to competitive football after a six year hiatus due to their grounds being used as part of the Second World War effort. His efforts in United’s 1946/47 Northern Regional League campaign merited his sole Amateur international cap against England. Despite being a regular on the teamsheet throughout the 1947/48 season at the Showgrounds, Nipper missed out on a place in the team for the County Antrim Shield final win against Linfield in May 1948 and left the club soon after – returning to the intermediate league to play regular football including a spell with Ballyclare Comrades.

Two years later new boss Norman Kernaghan brought Anderson back to senior football for the 1950/51 season and played a key role in the team’s run to the final of the Irish Cup, even scoring the winning goal in the semi-final against Portadown. Defeat to Glentoran in the showpiece left the local forward with only a runners-up medal for his efforts though. United also reached the final of the County Antrim Shield again, which this time Anderson started, but the 2-2 with Cliftonville and the lack of available dates during the remainder of the season meant the replay would be held over until the following August.

By August, his mentor Kernaghan had left as manager and the club’s committee drafted in a raft of new faces as the club fielded six new players for the replay in August 1951. This meant no space in the team for William, who made only the one appearance that season before leaving the club for a second time.

Nipper continued playing in the local area, and went on to become a much loved and respected manager in junior circles and also managed Ballymena United’s reserve team.

Ireland Amateur Cap Details:
08-02-1947 England A L 1-3

Summary: 1/0. Won 0, Drew 0, Lost 1.

Courtesy of www.ballymenaunitedfc.com.

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