Graham Rix

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Graham Rix
Personal information
Full name Graham Cyril Rix
Date of birth (1957-10-23) 23 October 1957 (age 61)
Place of birth Doncaster, England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
A.F.C. Portchester (Manager)
Youth career
1974–1975 Arsenal
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1975–1988 Arsenal 351 (41)
1987–1988 Brentford (loan) 6 (0)
1988–1991 Caen 89 (9)
1991–1992 Le Havre 12 (0)
1992–1993 Dundee 14 (2)
1995 Chelsea 1 (0)
Total 473 (52)
National team
1977–1980 England U21 7 (0)
1980–1984 England 17 (0)
Teams managed
2000 Chelsea (caretaker)
2001–2002 Portsmouth
2004 Oxford United
2005–2006 Hearts
2012 Central FC
2013– A.F.C. Portchester

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

† Appearances (goals)

Graham Rix (born 23 October 1957) is an English former football player. He is currently the head coach of A.F.C. Portchester.

Playing career


Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, Rix joined Arsenal as an apprentice in 1974 and turned professional the year after. He made his debut for the club against Leicester City on 2 April 1977, and marked it by scoring the opening goal. Rix immediately became a regular on the left wing, replacing George Armstrong. Together with Liam Brady, he formed part of an impressive attacking midfield, which helped Arsenal to three successive cup finals between 1978 and 1980. Arsenal only won one of these, in 1979 against Manchester United; the final score was 3–2, with Rix crossing for Alan Sunderland's last-minute winner, just seconds after United had equalised to level the score 2–2.

Arsenal reached the Cup Winners' Cup final the following season, against Valencia; the match finished 0–0 after extra time – a penalty shootout ensued, but Rix missed his kick and Arsenal lost. After the departure of Liam Brady to Juventus that summer, many believed Rix would also leave but he stayed at the club, and became captain in 1983. Arsenal's form slumped in the early 1980s, though, meaning Rix was unable to claim any silverware as skipper.

After Arsenal

A series of injuries to his achilles tendon kept Rix out of the team in the mid-1980s, and he lost his starting place in the side to Martin Hayes. Rix spent a spell on loan at Brentford, before being released in 1988. In all, he played 464 times for the Gunners, scoring 51 goals.

After leaving the London club, Rix was subject of offers from Sheffield Wednesday as well as Queens Park Rangers, but he instead signed for French club Caen, where he would spend three years before transferring to Le Havre, and then played in Scotland for Dundee before announcing his retirement as a player in 1993.[1]


Between 1980 and 1984, Rix played for the England national team, including making five appearances at the 1982 World Cup. He was capped 17 times, but failed to score. His first appearance came on 10 September 1980 in a 4–0 win over Norway, his last in a 1–0 win over Northern Ireland on 4 April 1984.[2]

Coaching career


Rix joined Chelsea as youth team coach in mid-1993; during an injury crisis, he briefly enlisted as a player for the club, playing a solitary Premier League match in May 1995 against his old side Arsenal. Rix became assistant manager in 1996 under new Blues boss Ruud Gullit, and continued in the same role under Gullit's successor Gianluca Vialli, winning the FA Cup in 1997, and the League Cup and Cup Winners' Cup in 1998.

Sex offences and prison term

In March 1999, Rix was sentenced to 12 months in prison, of which he served six, for having underage sex with a 15-year-old girl. He was also ordered to be placed on the sex offender registry for 10 years, and banned by the FA from working with youth players under the age of 16.[3] On his release from prison, he immediately rejoined Chelsea in his old job. He won the FA Cup again in 2000, before leaving the club, after a brief spell as caretaker manager following Vialli's sacking by Ken Bates.

Portsmouth and Oxford

Rix managed Portsmouth between 2001 and 2002, where his enthusiastic style of management started well, but tapered off in the middle of the 2001–02 season. A string of poor results, including a 4–1 home loss in the F.A Cup to bottom of the Football League Leyton Orient, meant that Director of Football Harry Redknapp was given more responsibilities until he eventually replaced Rix as team manager toward the end of the season. Rix then managed Oxford United for seven months in 2004. Their form declined sharply during the last three months of the 2003–04 Division Three campaign: they fell from the automatic promotion places to ninth in the final table, failing to achieve even a playoff place. His position was always rumoured to be 'unsafe', and he was sacked after their dismal form continued into 2004–05, where he led the club to nearer the relegation zone than the play-offs.


In November 2005, after speculation linking him with the manager's job at Scottish Premier League club Heart of Midlothian, it was confirmed that Rix would take over at Tynecastle. He officially took the position of head coach on 8 November 2005.[4] Events reported in February 2006, by Scottish newspapers, suggested that Rix was unhappy with Vladimir Romanov's "hands on" approach and speculation increased that Romanov was involved in team selection. On 22 March 2006 Rix was sacked as manager after just four months in charge, with the club citing poor results as the reason.[5]

Central FC

On 13 August 2012, Rix was named the first manager of Central FC,[6] which was a newly formed club founded by former Trinidad and Tobago international football player Brent Sancho, that competed in the TT Pro League.[7] Rix recorded his first league win with Central FC on 19 October 2012 with a 1–0 win over Police.[8] Rix and Central FC through mutual consent parted ways on 21 December 2012.[9]

A.F.C. Portchester

In February 2013, he was appointed head coach of A.F.C. Portchester.[10]

Managerial stats

Team Nat From To Record
G W L D Win %
Chelsea England 13 September 2000 17 September 2000 2 1 0 1 50.0
Portsmouth England 25 February 2001 25 March 2002 56 16 23 17 28.6
Oxford United England 22 March 2004 14 November 2004 29 6 15 8 20.7
Hearts Scotland 8 November 2005 22 March 2006 19 9 4 6 47.4
Central FC Trinidad and Tobago 13 August 2012 21 December 2012 9 4 0 5 44.4


  1. "My own goal – Graham Rix". The Independent. London. 26 February 1995.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. [1]
  3. "Football star admits sex charge". BBC News. 19 February 1999. Retrieved 7 March 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "Mercer slams 'hypocrites' over Rix appointment". Scotsman. 9 November 2005. Retrieved 5 October 2007.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "Rix sacked as Hearts head coach", BBC News, 23 March 2006
  6. "Central FC unveils head coach Graham Rix". Central FC Media. 15 August 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Sancho Launches Central FC". 27 July 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Central edges Police for maiden Pro League win". Lasana Liburd ( 19 October 2012. Retrieved 19 October 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Fenwick is back; ex-Jabloteh coach takes over at Central". Lasana Liburd ( 5 January 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. Jordan Cross (21 February 2013). "Portchester land former Pompey boss in shock move". The News. Retrieved 21 February 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
David O'Leary
Arsenal captain
Succeeded by
Kenny Sansom