Scottish Cup Final 1898
Scotland friendlies 1946
Challenge Cup 1999
Don Mackay
Alan Gordon
Tannadice, Xmas 1971
Dewar Shield 1968
QOS Crowds
Thistle Boss 1967
Cross-border moves
Maurice Johnston
1920s Testimonial
Sergei Baltacha Jr.

All the old SFAQS can be found here




Q John Hastings sends in this 19th century conundrum. “What did 16 of the 22 players in the 1898 Scottish Cup Final have in common?”

A They were all born in Ayrshire. Nine of the Killie team as follows:

Anderson, Brown, Campbell, Johnstone, Maitland, McPherson, Muir (all Kilmarnock), Findlay (Galston) Reid (Mauchline)

Seven of the Rangers side:

Nicol Smith, Alec Smith (both Darvel), McPherson, Mitchell (both Kilmarnock), Millar (Annbank), Hamilton (Hurlford), Hyslop (Mauchline)

The McPhersons were brothers. The 'interlopers' in the Killie side were McAllan (Camlachie, Glasgow) and Busby (Alexandria, Dunbartonshire).

The non-Ayrshiremen for Rangers were Dickie (Rhu, Dunbartonshire), Drummond (Alva, Clackmannanshire), Gibson (Larkhall, Lanarkshire) and Neil (unknown, but as his first club was Ashfield, probably Glasgow).

Q Scotland will enjoy the backing of at least one Italian in the forthcoming World Cup match, as Gabriele Tox explains: "I found your e-mail address on the RSSSF website. I am Italian, but a Scotland National team supporter. I am updating my archive of Scotland international matches, that I built thanks to the huge work of Mr. Alan Brown (RSSSF), the help of other members of RSSSF and many hours spent by myself at the National Library of Florence. During my searches to update my archive I found two of Scotland's international matches in 1946 against Belgium and Switzerland, that are not stated on the RSSSF archive of Scotland matches, but they are stated on the Scottish Football Association archive.

For updating these two matches, I would like to know which were the teams the Scottish players were actually playing for at the time of those two friendly matches.”

A (For the benefit of those who don't know the names mentioned by Gabriele, the RSSSF is the body which gathers statistics on the game across the globe and Alan Brown is a Scottish football historian who has posted a lot of historical information on their site. Alan's own site can be found here).

I think the reason these games do not appear on Alan Brown's list is that they are 'unofficial' and appearances in them do not count as international 'caps.' This is because the official resumption of Scottish football after the second world war wasn't until August 1946 and these games were in January (Belgium) and May (Switzerland).

In addition to these matches there were also 15 wartime games against England and one each against Northern Ireland and Wales which are also unofficial. There were also two games v England and two v Ireland in 1919 which come into the same category.

Players and clubs for the two games in question are listed below. Brown and Delaney are the same players in both games but had changed clubs between playing Belgium and meeting Switzerland.

Scotland v Belgium, Hampden Park, 23 January 1946.
The match finished 2-2. Delaney scored both goals, one a penalty. The attendance was 48830.

Bobby Brown (QUEEN'S PARK), James McGowan (PARTICK THISTLE), Jock Shaw (RANGERS), Jimmy Campbell (CLYDE) Andy Paton (MOTHERWELL), George Paterson (CELTIC), Gordon Smith (HIBERNIAN), Archie Baird (ABERDEEN) Jimmy Delaney (CELTIC),John Deakin (ST MIRREN) Jimmy Walker (HEARTS)

Scotland v Switzerland, Hampden Park, 15 May 1946.
Scotland enjoyed a 3-1 win over Switzerland. Liddell scored two and Delaney one. Attendance was 111899.

Bobby Brown (RANGERS), David Shaw (HIBERNIAN), Jock Shaw (RANGERS) Billy Campbell (MORTON), Frank Brennan (AIRDRIEONIANS) Jackie Husband (PARTICK THISTLE), Willie Waddell (RANGERS), Willie Thornton (RANGERS), Jimmy Delaney (MANCHESTER UNITED) Tommy Walker (HEARTS), Billy Liddell (LIVERPOOL)

Q From Alan Sheridan: “Do you have the goalscorers & the goalscoring sequence when Alloa Athletic drew 4-4 with Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the Challenge Cup Final in 1999 & then won 5-4 on penalties?”

A G Clark (Alloa 19) Alloa 1-0, B Wilson (ICT 28) 1-1, M Wilson (Alloa 34) Alloa 2-1. Half-time 2-1. P Sheerin (ICT 46 pen) 2-2, M Cameron (Alloa 48) Alloa 3-2, P Sheerin (ICT 53 pen) 3-3. 90 minutes 3-3. M Cameron (Alloa 103) Alloa 4-3, P Sheerin (ICT 110) 4-4.

Q Chris Archer has a few Tannadice-oriented queries starting with this.“Which former Dundee United goalkeeper has managed Dundee FC and Blackburn Rovers?”

A It was Don Mackay

Q Also from Chris: “Which Dundee United striker of yesteryear played for Dundee United, Dundee, Hibs, and Hearts?” And finally “Dundee United last played a game on Christmas day at Tannadice on December 1971 but who did they play?”

A The player you're looking for is Alan Gordon who also played and scored when Dundee United beat Dunfermline Athletic 3-2 at Tannadice on Xmas Day 1971.

Q Two queries from Gary Neile. “The first Scottish Match I ever saw was ST JOHNSTONE v KEITH, a Dewar Shield Semi-Final at Muirton Park, Perth. Saints won 3-0, but I have long since lost my Programme and match report and wonder if anybody can tell me the Team Line-ups, Scorers and Match Attendance?”

A This was on November 13th 1968. The St Johnstone team was Donaldson, Beatson, Argue, Gordon, Smith, Miller, Aird, McPhee, Rennie, Hall, Aitken. All the goals came from Gordon Rennie who scored a hat-trick. Sorry, I have no information on the Keith line-up or the attendance though this would be very low, around 1,000 or less being common at this time for this competition.

Q Also from Gary “Are you able to tell me attendances for the following two games? I was at both, but somehow never recorded the crowd figures in my own records.”
Queen of the South 0-2 Clyde - 07.01.1995 - Scottish Cup Round Two
Queen of the South 0-3 Clyde - 02.09.1995 - Scottish League Second Division

A The crowds were 1,803 (Cup) and 1,897 (League) respectively.

Q Chris Fagg wants to know “Who was manager of Partick Thistle in 1967?”

A It was Willie Thornton who held the job for nine years, leaving the managerial job at Dundee to take over at Firhill when incumbent Davie Meiklejohn died in August 1959 and departing for Ibrox as assistant to Rangers boss Davie White in September 1968.

Q Tan Yong Song has two questions on cross-border moves“What is the name the Scottish league team that used to participate in English non leagues and joined the Scottish League few years ago and can you tell me the English Club that currently plays in the Scottish League?”

A You're thinking of Gretna who joined the Scottish League in 2002 after many years in English football and Berwick Rangers who have played in the Scottish League for over a half a century and the Scottish Cup for even longer.

Q Scott Mason harks back to the dramatic last day of the 1985-86 season. “Who scored the third goal for Celtic against St Mirren last day of the league (5-0)1985-86?”

A It was Mo Johnston. The scoring sequence was McClair, Johnston, Johnston, McStay, McClair.

Q Alastair Hay inquires about a testimonial. “Can you please give details of the testimonial match played for Rangers' player James 'Fister' Walls in the early 1920s? (I think it was Rangers vs Newcastle United). Date, score and approximate attendance if possible.”

A Rangers met Newcastle six times between 1921-25, three of which were testimonials. As Walls' last season was in 1923-24 then the most likely match is the one played at Ibrox on April 7th 1925 which Rangers won 1-0. I'm sorry I don't have any crowd details.

The two other testimonials between Rangers and Newcastle during this time were both at Ibrox, on April 26th 1921 (0-0) and April 25th 1922 (1-1).

Q Two questions from Robert Hosie “When was the last time Celtic and Rangers played [not against each other] on a Saturday afternoon at 3 pm?”

A The last time (and the only time so far this season) was on Saturday August 14th 2004 when Rangers played Livingston at Ibrox and Celtic met Kilmarnock at Rugby Park.

Q Robert also has this poser. “Why was Sergei Baltacha's son allowed to play for Scotland Under-21s? At least I think it was his son."

A It WAS Sergei Baltacha's son who played for the U-21s while he was with St Mirren. I can think of a few reasons as to why he was eligible. Possibly his father became a naturalised British citizen in which case his children would presumably follow. I don't know if that's the case or not but it's one possible answer.

The second is simply that he acquired citizenship through domicile. There are plenty of examples of sports stars who were born elsewhere but came to the UK as children and later represented this country, often at the highest level. Joe Bugner and Frank Bruno spring to mind. At the other extreme there have been others who have changed countries simply because they saw a more lucrative future elsewhere. I would say Zola Budd and Greg Rusedski come into this category (though in these instances they were reliant on rules concerning parents and grandparents).

In all these cases though the people involved had to take out British nationality and Baltacha must either have done so or acquired it from naturalised parents.

Baltacha's younger sister Elena is (for what it's worth) the top ranked British women's tennis player.

Tennis in fact is a particularly good example of players switching nationality. Martina Navratilova represented both Czechoslovakia and the USA for instance.

As the younger Baltacha was aged nine when his father moved to Ipswich and not quite eleven when his dad moved to St Johnstone and as he then grew up in Perth and Inverness as his father spent the rest of his career playing and coaching in Scotland then it seems to be only natural that the Sergei junior would lean towards representing Scotland if given the choice.

Even if he is a British national, as he wasn't born or had parents born in any of the constituent parts of the UK he would have been eligible for any of the home nations. This also applies to players like Matt Le Tissier, born in the Channel Islands of parents who were also Channel Islanders who, in theory, could have been selected by Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

What makes it more confusing is that when Baltacha was born (1979) and also his sister (1983) the Ukraine was still part of the USSR and I think there is an agreement in force which allows those born in the USSR to represent not only the country of their birth and/or residence but ANY of the successor states to the Soviet Union. As it's highly unlikely that anyone from Latvia, say, would be desperate to turn out for Turkmenistan this is in effect an opportunity for Russia to scoop up the most promising athletes.

Having said all that I assume the real reason he played for Scotland at U-21 is that out of all the countries he was eligible for, we were the only ones who thought he was any good!


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