Lee is one of the most respected defenders in Premiership history and played over 600 games with Arsenal over 14 years where he won four league titles, three FA Cups and the European Cup Winners’ Cup.
Lee’s first Championship medal was earned in dramatic fashion when Arsenal won the 1989 First Division courtesy of a 2-0 win atLiverpool. Michael Thomas’s last minute goal ensured Arsenal won the game by the required two goals, but it was Dixon that started the move deep in his own half for the Championship winning goal.
Lee made his England international debut in in April 1990 in a World Cup warm-up game against Czechoslovakia. He would go on to win another 22 caps but injury and misfortune meant he failed to play in a major championship.
But any international disappointment was replaced by domestic joy. Along with Winterburn, Tony Adams and Steve Bould, as well as goalkeeper David Seaman, Lee was part of one of the infamous and meanest defences in modern football history under George Graham. They went on to win in the league title again in 1991 and Lee also played in the winning 1993 FA Cup Final team. The following season the Gunners went on to lift the European Cup Winners’ Cup beating Parma 1-0 in the final in Copenhagen.
A new era of Dixon’s career began when Arsene Wenger came to Highbury in 1996. It was assumed that the Frenchman would break up the old defence but it only spurred Lee and his team-mates onto higher things. Martin Keown replaced Bould but not before together Arsenal achieved the “double” in 1998.
Lee received a testimonial from the club in 1999, and although he was to be disappointed when Arsenal lost the 2000 UEFA Cup final, Dixon would two years later claim a second “double” under Wenger in four years. In 2002, aged 38, Dixon decided to hang up his boots after 619 appearances and 28 goals in an Arsenal shirt.
Since retiring Lee has opened a highly respected restaurant in Berkshire with celebrated chef Heston Blumenthal. He has also lowered his golf handicap considerably and is a good friend of Arsenal-loving golfer Ian Poulter.
Lee joined the BBC in August 2004 appearing as a pundit on Final Score and is a regular pundit on Match of the Day, Football Focus and MOTD2.
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