To many Kevin Campbell is the answer to a famous football trivia question. To Everton fans he was simply ‘Super Kev’.

Toffees and Arsenal supporters are mourning the death after a short illness of the 54-year-old, who will also be fondly remembered by those at Nottingham Forest and West Brom.

Many a sports quiz will have posed the question, “Who has scored the most goals in the Premier League without earning a senior cap for his country?” but Campbell’s lack of international recognition barely registers at Goodison Park.

Liverpool’s Stephane Henchoz challenges Everton's Kevin Campbell
Probably Kevin Campbell’s most famous Everton goal came at Anfield in 1999 (Phil Noble/PA)

There they remember his nine goals in five games which saved the club from relegation in 1999 shortly after joining on loan.

And his match-winning strike at Anfield four months later which earned their last success across Stanley Park until the Covid-era victory 22 years later.

“It was at the Kop End and my view, which will live with me until the day I die, is the Blues in the Kop going crazy,” he said of that goal.

“That was, and still is, one of my favourite memories in football.”

One of his proudest was when Walter Smith made him captain for the 2001-02 season.

“He made me the first black captain of Everton, which is something that I’m so proud of,” he said.

Born in Lambeth in February 1970, Campbell’s first love was Arsenal, whom he joined on schoolboy forms in 1985, once scoring 59 goals in a season for one of the academy teams.

He was also instrumental in the 1988 FA Youth Cup win, scoring a hat-trick in the final and making his first-team debut late that season.

“I couldn’t afford to go to games when I was younger so I waited until the last 20 minutes when they opened the gates to the old North Bank stand and ran in to watch the final action of the game,” he said.

“So to be able to actually play for the team I supported was a dream come true.”

After loan spells at Leyton Orient and Leicester, his eight goals in 10 matches during the run-in was pivotal to the Gunners’ First Division title win in 1991.

Arsenal’s Ian Wright and Kevin Campbell
Kevin Campbell, right, with Arsenal team-mate Ian Wright (John Stillwell/PA)

The arrival of Ian Wright at Highbury in 1991 increased competition for places up front and, despite continuing to feature, Campbell joined Nottingham Forest in 1995.

He scored 60 goals in 224 games for Arsenal and, alongside the league title, also won the FA Cup, League Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup.

He was relegated with Forest in 1997, but 23 goals the following season saw them bounce straight back, only for him to be controversially sold to Turkish side Trabzonspor – prompting partner Pierre van Hooijdonk to memorably go on strike.

“It didn’t make sense at the time, but football doesn’t make sense a lot of the time,” was Campbell’s view.

“Dave Bassett the manager at the time mentioned to me later that it was Irving Scholar, the ex-Spurs chairman, who decided to sell me, so maybe the reason he sold me was the old Spurs v Arsenal rivalry.”

Kevin Campbell in action for Nottingham Forest
Kevin Campbell in action for Nottingham Forest (PA)

Campbell lasted less than a season in Turkey, arriving on Merseyside in March 1999, having been frozen out in the aftermath of club president Mehmet Ali Yilmaz calling him a “cannibal”, although Campbell insisted the international press misunderstood a Turkish phrase.

He immediately became a fan favourite at Goodison and remains the club’s fifth-highest Premier League goal-scorer.

Away from the pitch during his time at the club, Campbell set up a record label, 2 Wikid, signing controversial rapper Mark Morrison to it, but their partnership turned sour and resulted in a legal battle in 2004 over the release of the Return of the Mack star’s album Innocent Man.

Campbell moved to West Brom in January 2005 and performed another rescue act as they became the first club bottom of the table at Christmas to survive.

It was a temporary reprieve, however, as they went down the next year and Campbell joined Cardiff for 12 months before retiring.

True to his nice guy reputation, he maintained he understood having been named in England squads but never winning a cap.

“I was not disappointed at all to not play for England. There were a lot of good players in that era so it was difficult to get into the team,” he said.

“I am probably a good trivia question for a player who was called up but never won a cap.”

He was so much more than that, however.

Campbell’s death was announced by his former clubs Arsenal and Everton on Saturday morning. He leaves behind his son Tyrese, a professional footballer who was most recently at Stoke.