Foster: He could have been the best in the world

Wednesday 30 March 2022 14:45

Ben Foster has claimed in his entertaining UTD Podcast that former Manchester United team-mate Anderson “could have been the best player in the world at one point”.

Our former goalkeeper explains that opinion during the second half of his episode, while reflecting on his inspired performance in the 2009 League Cup final victory over Tottenham Hotspur. 

Foster was Edwin van der Sar’s understudy at that time, but he started the showpiece occasion at Wembley Stadium and it became the most famous game of his Reds career: Ben saved one of three penalties in the shootout and was then named the official Man of the Match. 

After David Bentley had shot wide, Anderson stepped up and dispatched a cool left-footed finished into the bottom corner, sending the Tottenham keeper Heurelho Gomes the wrong way.
Ben Foster has claimed Anderson could have been the best player in the world at one point.
It was no fluke either: as you will know, the Brazilian had famously scored from the penalty spot a few months earlier in the 2008 Champions League final at the close of his debut season. 

Anderson’s talent was undoubted and the fans’ favourite had made a strong start as a Red, playing 38 games in each of his first two seasons, but he unfortunately struggled with injuries and fitness as his career continued. 

In 2015, ‘Ando’ returned to his native Brazil with 181 appearances, nine goals and seven major honours to his name - including four league titles - and he remains a popular figure for supporters, who still sing his name on matchdays.

When looking back on the 2009 League Cup final, UTD Podcast star Foster urges co-hosts David May, Helen Evans and Sam Homewood to book his former team-mate as a future guest.

“I still think the class of the penalty takers that day - honestly, top class - was Carlos Tevez and Anderson,” recalls Ben, before focusing on the Brazilian ex-Red.

“Anderson, you should get him on the podcast!

“He could have been the best player in the world at one point, I promise you he could have. Everybody would say that he could have been the best in the world at one point.

Watch the highlights of the 2009 League Cup final.

“But he just didn't care, he didn't care about anything. Honestly, he didn't care about anything [laughs]. But you put him on a pitch and he was like that. 

“Carlos Tevez was the same sort of thing. Put him on the pitch and oh my god. There has got to be something in being South American, there's got to be something in that.”

Listen to Ben Foster’s UTD Podcast in full for more tales from his career