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Villa's Fab 50 top player countdown: 3 Johnny Dixon

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Villa's Fab 50 top player countdown: 3 Johnny Dixon

Villa's Fab 50
3: Johnny Dixon
Career: 1944-1961
Appearances: 430
Goals: 144

The biggest tragedy of Johnny Dixon's later life was that he couldn't remember his greatest triumph.

Dixon suffered from Alzheimer's disease before his death in January 2009 at the age of 85, and had no recollection of the glorious day at Wembley half a century earlier when he proudly held the FA Cup aloft at Wembley.

Thankfully, the occasion will always be cherished by Villa folk.

Although it was the club's seventh Cup triumph, it was their first at Wembley - and their last of the 20th century.

A few years before his death, the popular Geordie described just how much it meant to him, describing how he was almost in tears a few minutes before the final whistle when he imagined the feeling of being presented with the trophy.

"It was fantastic when I went up to collect the Cup," he said. "The Queen handed me the Cup and I turned away from her to hold it up. To do something like that just once in a lifetime is tremendous and I will always be grateful for that."

Dixon's Villa career had begun a decade earlier when he wrote for a trial because he liked the club's name.

He arrived during the war, in August 1944, and 20 months later he scored on his debut against Derby County in the Football League (South).

After scoring three goals in five games, he established himself as a regular in the Villa line-up when league football resumed in 1946-47, going on to make an impressive 430 appearances before his retirement in 1961.

He also scored 144 goals, including five during the 1957 Cup run, and was on target in a 4-1 victory over Sheffield Wednesday in his farewell game - on the day Charlie Aitken made his debut.

A classy inside forward, he was Villa's leading scorer on four occasions, including the 1951-52 campaign, when he hit a personal best 28.

Dixon also helped Villa to regain top flight status by winning the Second Division title in 1959-60 after they had been relegated the previous season for only the second time in the club's history. Following his retirement, he coached the club's youngsters for six years.

All profiles courtesy of Rob Bishop and Frank Holt's comprehensive book: Aston Villa - The Complete Record.

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 Villa's Fab 50 Countdown

50: John Carew - click here
49: Juan Pablo Angel - click here
48: John Deehan - click here
47: Ken McNaught - click here
46: Gary Williams - click here
45: Tony Daley - click here
44: Ashley Young - click here
43: Jackie Sewell - click here
42: David Platt - click here
41: Dean Saunders - click here
40: Olof Mellberg - click here
39: Martin Laursen - click here
38: Dion Dublin - click here
37: Gabby Agbonlahor - click here
36: Bobby Thomson - click here
35: Harry Burrows - click here
34: Mark Bosnich - click here
33: Ray Graydon - click here
32: Les Smith - click here
31: Harry Parkes - click here
30: George Cummings - click here
29: Jimmy Dugdale - click here
28: Chris Nicholl - click here
27: Alan Wright - click here
26: Jimmy Rimmer - click here
25: Brian Little - click here
24: Gerry Hitchens - click here
23: Peter Aldis - click here
22: Tony Hateley - click here
21: Tony Morley - click here
20: Gary Shaw - click here
19: Steve Staunton - click here
18: Ian Taylor - click here
17: Dwight Yorke - click here
16: Des Bremner - click here
15: Gareth Southgate - click here
14: Nigel Sims - click here
13: Andy Gray - click here
12: Gareth Barry - click here
11: Stan Lynn - click here
10: Charlie Aitken - click here
9: Nigel Spink - click here
8: Allan Evans - click here
7: Peter Withe - click here
6: Peter McParland - click here
5: Trevor Ford - click here
4: Paul McGrath - click here
3: Johnny Dixon

AVFC Official
By @AVFCOfficial 23rd July 2011