Victor Anichebe

Victor Chinedu Anichebe (born 23 April 1988) is a Nigerian professional footballer who played as a striker. He is currently a free agent, having played most recently for Beijing Enterprises.

Victor Anichebe
Anichebe playing for Everton in 2011
Personal information
Full name Victor Chinedu Anichebe[1]
Date of birth (1988-04-23) 23 April 1988[2]
Place of birth Lagos, Nigeria
Height 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)[3]
Playing position Striker
Youth career
2003–2006 Everton
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2006–2013 Everton 131 (18)
2013–2016 West Bromwich Albion 55 (6)
2016–2017 Sunderland 18 (3)
2017 Beijing Enterprises 11 (2)
National team
2008 Nigeria U23 5 (2)
2008–2011 Nigeria 11 (1)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 28 October 2017
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 17 November 2011

Early life

Anichebe was born in Lagos, Lagos State, Nigeria[4] but moved to Liverpool, Merseyside, England aged one. His family originally lived in Toxteth before settling in Crosby. He is the cousin of former professional football player Iffy Onuora,[5] Olympian Anyika Onuora and professional basketball player Chiz Onuora. He is also an Olympic silver medallist, competing for Nigeria in the 2008 Olympics.

Club career


Anichebe made his reserve-team debut for Everton as a 15-year-old and his first-team debut less than two years later on 27 February 2006, as a substitute in the 89th minute of Everton's FA Cup fourth round tie against Chelsea, replacing Simon Davies. He signed his first professional contract with Everton, a two-year deal, in April 2006. On 7 May 2006, he scored his first Premier League goal, against West Bromwich Albion.[6] He was awarded Everton's Reserve Player of the Season for the 2005–06 season.

Anichebe scored his first two Premier League goals of the 2006–07 campaign in a 3–0 win against Newcastle United on 30 December 2006. His contract was extended by four years towards the end of the season as Everton qualified for the UEFA Cup. In the UEFA Cup, Anichebe scored four times, against Metalist Kharkiv, AE Larissa, 1. FC Nürnberg and Brann of Norway after coming on as a late second-half substitute in many of the matches. At the end of the season, he was voted by Everton fans as their Young Player of the Season.[7]

On 22 February 2009, in a match against Newcastle United, a tackle from Kevin Nolan left Anichebe and unable to play for 11 months. Nolan, who received a straight red card for the foul, later settled out of court when Anichebe sued for loss of earnings. He returned to first team action in January 2010 in a 2–0 victory over Sunderland. His first goal on rejoining the squad came two months later in a 2–2 draw with Birmingham City. In January 2011, he signed a new four-and-a-half-year contract with Everton, along with teammate Séamus Coleman.

Anichebe suffered a groin injury while on international duty in September and did not play for the rest of 2011.[8] He made his return as a second-half substitute on 1 January 2012, against West Bromwich Albion and scored in the 87th minute to give Everton a 1–0 away win.[9] He continued his comeback by coming off the bench to score the equaliser in a 1–1 with Aston Villa on 14 January.[10] Anichebe continued his goalscoring form by scoring his third goal of the season as a substitute in a 1–1 with Wigan Athletic on 4 February.[11] His appearance also meant he became Everton's most used substitute in the history of the club, breaking Duncan Ferguson's old record of 82.[12]

In his first Premier League start of the 2012–13 season, Anichebe scored the opening goal in a 3–0 win over Swansea City with a left-footed effort from close in.[13] He then missed a number of games due to an hamstring injury, but returned in December to score a header to level the match against West Ham United at 1–1.[14] Everton went on to win 2–1.[15] He provided two assists during the festive season before scoring the winner against Newcastle United on 2 January 2013.[16]

In February, Anichebe scored his first goal in the FA Cup of his Everton career against Oldham Athletic in a match which ended 2–2.[17] In the second half of the season, he was used as Everton's main striker due to his impressive displays and the drop in form of Nikica Jelavić.[18] In late March, Anichebe said he wanted to finish the season with a goal tally in double figures, but he finished with 8 goals from 32 matches, still the most he has scored in a single season in his career.[19]

West Bromwich Albion

On 2 September 2013, Anichebe transferred to West Bromwich Albion in a deal which could rise to £6 million.[20] On 2 February, Anichebe scored his second league goal against Liverpool to earn West Brom a point. On 11 February, he came on as a substitute and scored against Chelsea to earn West Brom a point.[21]

On 18 May 2016, it was announced Anichebe and Stéphane Sessègnon would leave West Brom at the end of the 2015–16 season.[22]


On 2 September 2016, Anichebe signed a one-year contract with Sunderland to play under manager David Moyes, the club's ninth signing of the summer.[23][24] His first goal for the club came on 5 November 2016, when he scored in a 2–1 win against AFC Bournemouth, as Sunderland came from behind—with ten men—to secure their first win of the 2016–17 Premier League season.[25] He followed that up in the next match, on 19 November 2016, when he scored two goals in a 3–0 home win against Hull City.[26] His performances in November earned him a nomination for the PFA Fans Player of the Month award.[27]

Beijing Enterprises

On 23 June 2017, Anichebe joined Chinese club Beijing Enterprises.[28]

International career

Anichebe made his debut for Nigeria on 26 March 2008 in an Olympic games qualifying match against South Africa. Anichebe came off the substitutes' bench to score the final goal in a 3–0 victory for Nigeria. He made his first start for Nigeria alongside fellow Everton player Yakubu in a friendly against Austria on 27 May 2008 being replaced at half-time.

Anichebe was selected to represent Nigeria at the 2008 Summer Olympics. On 10 August 2008, he scored Nigeria's second goal in their match against Japan. Nigeria eventually reached the final, which they lost 1–0 to Argentina, with Anichebe receiving a silver medal.

Anichebe was not selected on the final 23-man roster for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa despite a good performance during a friendly against Saudi Arabia. He scored his first senior team goal in the March 2011 friendly against Kenya. Anichebe suffered a groin injury during a 2012 African Cup of Nations qualifying match against Madagascar in September 2011, with Nigeria head coach Samson Siasia blaming the poor pitch.[8] The Super Eagles won the match 2–0 but would miss out on qualification for the tournament one month later, with the injured Anichebe unable to take part in the deciding group match against Guinea.[29]

In October 2012, Anichebe announced he was focusing on his form for club side Everton, rather than on earning a return to the Nigerian team. He was subsequently omitted from the squad for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, a tournament which Nigeria won. In May 2013, Anichebe temporarily retired from international football to concentrate on his club career. However, he said he would return to international football in the future.[30]

Career statistics


As of match played 28 October 2017[31][32]
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
Everton 2005–06 Premier League 2110000031
2006–07 Premier League 193103100234
2007–08 Premier League 271104094415
2008–09 Premier League 171300020221
2009–10 Premier League 111000000111
2010–11 Premier League 160300000190
2011–12 Premier League 125301100166
2012–13 Premier League 266412100328
2013–14 Premier League 1000000010
Total 1311816110311416826
West Bromwich Albion 2013–14 Premier League 243000000243
2014–15 Premier League 213232000236
2015–16 Premier League 100301000140
Total 556533000619
Sunderland 2016–17 Premier League 113001000123
Beijing Enterprises 2017 China League One 112000000112
Career total 2082921414311425240


Appearances and goals by national team and year
National teamYearAppsGoals
Nigeria 200840

International goals

Scores and results list Nigeria's goal tally first.[33]
129 March 2011National Stadium, Abuja, Nigeria7 Kenya2–03–0Friendly


  1. "Updated Premier League squads for 2016/17 released". Premier League. 2 February 2017. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
  2. "V. Anichebe: Summary". Soccerway. Perform Group. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
  3. "Victor Anichebe: Overview". Premier League. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
  4. "Victor Anichebe". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
  5. "kalu exposes Ethiopia's Iffy Onuora". All Nigeria Sports. 3 February 2011. Archived from the original on 8 March 2012. Retrieved 23 February 2011.
  6. Victor Anichebe's first Everton goal Everton FC
  7. Young Player of the Season Archived 10 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine Everton FC
  8. "Everton FC facing a potential striker crisis after learning that Victor Anichebe will be out until Christmas with a groin tear". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 1 January 2012.
  9. "West Brom 0 – 1 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 1 January 2012.
  10. "Aston Villa 1 – 1 Everton". BBC Sport. 14 January 2012. Retrieved 14 January 2012.
  11. "Wigan 1 – 1 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 5 February 2012.
  12. "Most Substitute Appearances for Everton – All Competitions". Everton Results. Retrieved 8 April 2012.
  13. "Swansea 0–3 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  14. "Everton trio Tony Hibbert, Darron Gibson and Victor Anichebe miss Sunderland clash". The Independent. London. 9 November 2012. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  15. "West Ham 1–2 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  16. "Newcastle 1–2 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  17. "Nigerians Abroad: Ighalo scores against Barcelona, Anichebe scores against Oldham and Nwofor helps Venlo to a rare away win". Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  18. "Moyes believes Anichebe is gradually repaying Everton's faith on him". Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  19. "Everton FC striker Victor Anichebe wants double figures". Liverpool Daily Post. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  20. "West Brom sign Stephane Sessegnon and Victor Anichebe". BBC Sport. Retrieved 3 September 2013.
  21. "Martinez Explains Anichebe Exit". Everton F.C. Retrieved 3 September 2013.
  22. "Albion confirm Hawthorns departures". West Bromwich Albion F.C. 18 May 2016.
  23. "Victor Anichebe: Sunderland sign striker until end of season". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  24. "Striker Anichebe joins". Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  25. "A.F.C. Bournemouth 1-2 Sunderland". BBC Sport.
  26. "Sunderland 3-0 Hull City". BBC Sport.
  27. "Victor Anichebe nominated for Player of the Month award".
  28. "Transfer News: Victor Anichebe leaves Sunderland for Chinese side Beijing Enterprises -". 23 June 2017. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  29. "Nigeria fail to qualify for Africa Cup of Nations". The Times of India. Retrieved 1 January 2012.
  30. "Anichebe quits Super Eagles". ESPN FC. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
    "Nigeria's Anichebe retires from international football". Yahoo. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  31. "V. ANICHEBE". Soccerway. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  32. "Victor Anichebe". Soccerbase. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  33. "Anichebe, Victor". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
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