Date: 1st October 2010 at 12:54pm
Written by:

As we celebrate Millwall’s 125th year, we look at a significant player from each decade who has been part of the history of Millwall FC.

In the early 1880’s a group of young lads from Scotland came to London to find work.

hey found employment at Morton’s jam factory in the West Ferry Road on the Isle of Dog’s and within a few years had formed Millwall Rovers.

On Saturday 3rd October 1885 Millwall Rovers played their first ever game which they lost 5-0 against Fillebrook

As we celebrate Millwall’s 125th year, we look at a significant player from each decade who has been part of the history of Millwall FC.

1990’s Keith ‘Rhino’ Stevens

Stevens was born on 21st June 1964 in Merton, London.

He is second only to another one club man, Barry Kitchener,in Millwall appearances, 546 (11) to Kitch’s 595 (7).

As a Schoolboy at Pelham High School, he was spotted playing by chief scout Bob Pearson and invited to train once a week with Millwall, before signing associated schoolboy forms in 1978.
He signed professional forms in the summer of 1980.
Stevens was nicknamed ‘Rhino’ by his team mates, although it is unclear if this was due to his fearless tackling style or the size of his nose.

He was given his debut as a 16 year old at the tail end of the 1980/81 season away at Oxford United.

Two season’s later he was part of the team which won The Football League Trophy at Lincoln.
He gained a regular first team place and helped Millwall reach the Second Division in 1985.

Was a key member of the team which gained promotion to the top division in 1988 and became a crowd favourite with his tough tackling

He was appointed club captain in 1992 abd held the armband for 5 years.

In 1994 he was ever-present in the league as they finished third, but lost out on a place in the Premier League due to a playoff defeat at the hands of Derby County in the semi-finals, but ‘Rhino’ was voted as Player of the season.

Stevens was appointed reserve team manager in 1997 and then player-manager of Millwall in May 1998 on the dismissal of Billy Bonds, and named team-mate Alan McLeary as his co-manager. Between them they led The Lions to the Auto Windscreen Shield Final against Wigan at Wembley Stadium in 1999, where they were just beaten by a last minute goal.They remained in charge until their controversial dismissal on 17 September 2000 after failing to get Millwall promoted back to Division One.[

Despite no longer being with the club, in April 2001 Millwall awarded Stevens a testimonial, culminating in a friendly with Tottenham Hotspur in August 2001.

Stevens later managed non-league Fisher Athletic until resigning in July 2002.

Keith Stevens and his family emigrated to Australia, where he is the current assistant coach of the inaugural championship winning club Brisbane Roar in the Australian women’s W-League.

Keith ‘Rhino’ Stevens (1980-2000)

Millwall career (competitive games only)

Football League: 456 (10) appearances – 9 goals
FA Cup: 28 appearances – 0 goals
League Cup: 36 appearances – 1 goal
Other Competitions: 26 (1) appearances – 0 goals

Join The Vital Debate