Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Arsenal Joga Bonito Wednesday: Big Tone

OK, so Joga Bonito isn't the first thing that comes to mind when one says Tony Adams. But he is an Arsenal legend, captain in 3 decades, who lifted 7 major trophies for Arsenal at Highbury and was on 2 double winning sides {1998, 2002}.

Tony Adams: hardcore, hard drinker, hard nut, Arsenal legend

He spent all 22 years of his career at Arsenal, became Arsenal's youngest ever captain at age 21, and remained captain for 14 years until his retirement. He was the rock of the famous "Arsenal back four", the most famous defense in modern English football. In 1991, Arsenal won the league with only 1 loss and amazingly only conceded 18 goals over a 38 match season. And he took the biggest negative of his career, his alcoholism that led to a conviction on "drink driving" {the Brits seem to have a cooler sounding term for EVERYTHING} and spent 3 months in prison, and turned it into a positive, by coming clean, seeking help, conquering his alcoholism, releasing a book about it, Addicted in 1998, and starting a charity that aims to help athletes with drinking, drug, or gambling problems.

One of the biggest legends in Arsenal and Highbury history, and one of my favorite players since I started my journey as an American Gooner back in 1999. His improbably goal in the final game of the 1998 season was the cherry on top of the 1998 Double Ice Cream Sundae and is one of the most revered goals in Highbury history:

Some dude's top 5 Arsenal goals at Highbury {I guess Th14 vs. Spurs was his #6}:

"Would you believe it?!?"

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