Posts Tagged ‘ Eddie Turnbull ’

Hibs Legend Lawrie Reilly Dies Aged 84

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The last remaining member of the Hibs forward line of the early 1950’s known as the Famous Five has died in hospital aged 84.

Lawrie Reilly signed for Hibs in 1944 and made his first team debut in a 4-3 away victory against Kilmarnock in October 1945 at inside right to Gordon Smith. Continue reading

Fortieth Anniversary of the Famous Seven Nil Game

Today marks the fortieth anniversary of arguably the finest performance from a Hibs team in the club’s history.
The Irish News Review’s Hibernian correspondent John Hislop was one of the 35,989 spectators on that historic day and he recalls the players and manager who gained legendary status at the home of city rivals Hearts.
The previous season had ended with a 6-1 defeat to Jock Stein’s Celtic in the Scottish Cup Final at Hampden Park, but despite the result, all Hibs’ fans could see that something special was happening at Easter Road. Manager Eddie Turnbull predicted that Hibs would soon be back at the National Stadium, and he was proved right at the start of the following season.
The Drybrough Cup featured the highest scoring teams in the first and second divisions at the time, and Hibs slaughtered Rangers three-nil at Easter Road in the semi-final, in a game best remembered for the off field crowd trouble in the old ‘cow shed.’ The final, three days later was also held up when Celtic fans outraged at being three-nil down invaded the pitch. The break spoiled Hibs concentration, and Celtic eventually clawed their way back into the game, forcing extra time. Goals from Jimmy O’Rourke and Arthur Duncan however saw the silverware head east along the M8.
A few months later, goals from Pat Stanton and Jimmy O’Rourke again saw off Celtic as Hibs won the League Cup.
An eight-one thrashing of Ayr United and a three-two win over Aberdeen in the league saw Hibs sitting two points behind Celtic as they travelled to Gorgie for the New Year’s Day game. The Old Firm derby had been postponed as a number of Celtic players had the flu, and Turnbull knew that his team could go top with a six goal victory.
In those days, games were not all ticket, and there was no segregation. Fans turned up at any turnstile and paid their money, before standing wherever they fancied on the terracing. Often, fans congregated behind whichever goal their team was attacking and would change ends at half time.
At Tynecastle however, the younger and more vocal supporters of both sides would face each other on the old covered terracing opposite the tunnel.
Hearts created some early chances and future Hibs coach Donald Park missed a decent opportunity for the home side before Hibs took the lead.
Erich Schaedler’s long throw was flicked on by Alan Gordon and Jimmy O’Rourke hammered a beautifully-struck left foot shot into the roof of the net.
A few minutes later, Alex Edwards sliced open the Hearts defence and Alan Gordon chested his pass down before tucking his shot into the net. Arthur Duncan exploited a defensive mistake to make it three 12 minutes later, then 10 minutes before the half-time break, and Alex Cropley volley made it four.
Hibs continued to attack, and after a well-worked short corner, Duncan’s glancing header slipping into the net to make it five just before half time.
After 56 minutes Hibs scored a sixth when Pat Stanton cut through the Hearts defence and slipped the ball past Kenny Garland, only to see his lifelong pal O’Rourke nudge the ball over the line. Since then Pat has regularly joked about Jimmy stealing his goal but he wasn’t complaining that day.
The scoring was completed when Alan Gordon nodded in an Arthur Duncan cross to make history and send Hibs top of the league.
The Hibs team that day was: Jim Herriot, John Brownlie, Erich Schaedler, Pat Stanton, Jim Black, John Blackley, Alex Edwards, Jimmy O’Rourke, Alan Gordon, Alex Cropley, and Arthur Duncan.
Jim Herriot had been one of Eddie Turnbull’s first signings. He was a Scotland international, and had played the majority of his career in England where his performances for Birmingham City had so impressed author James Alfred Wight that he stole Jim’s identity to write his ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ books.
The full backs were John Brownlie and Erich Schaedler. John was an unbelievable talent who had been capped by Scotland whilst still a teenager, which in those days was a remarkable achievement. ‘Shades’ had been bought from Stirling Albion by Willie Macfarlane, and was a tough tackler who belied his size. The son of a German POW, he also won international honours and was part of the Scotland World Cup Squad in Munich the following year.
In defence were Jim ‘Cilla’ Black, an under-rated tough centre half and the elegant ‘Sloop’ John Blackley who accompanied Schaedler to Munich.
In midfield was the incomparable Pat Stanton, who was described by Scotland boss Tommy Docherty as being better that Bobby Moore, England’s world cup captain. Stanton was class personified and how Hibs, who were never shy in selling their best players, were able to hold onto him for so long is a mystery. Everyone who saw Pat in action would agree that he could have graced any team in the UK, and his total of only sixteen Scotland caps is nothing short of a national disgrace.
Alongside Pat was Alex ‘Micky’ Edwards who is widely regarded as the best player never to win a Scotland cap. Had he been playing today, he would have been a first choice for his country, but at that time, the selectors preferred Old Firm players, no doubt to increase the crowd. To be fair though, Micky was in competition with Celtic’s Jimmy Johnstone and Rangers’ Willie Henderson at the time, and he did have a reputation for having a short temper, but very few before or since could pass the ball like him.
If Hibs were able to keep Pat Stanton, they could not do the same with Alex’ Sojer’ Cropley who graced Highbury and Villa Park in England’s top division. Born of Aldershot of Scottish parents, Cropley was one of the first players to be capped having been born outside the country, and his ability was such that he kept Kenny Dalglish out of the team. His skill on the ball was only rivalled by his bravery, and he suffered a number of serious injuries during his illustrious career.
On the left wing was Arthur ‘Nijinsky’ Duncan, whose nickname came from the horse rather than the ballet dancer, and whose speed caused problems for defenders everywhere.
Up front was ex Hearts forward Alan Gordon whose ability in the air was second to none. Once again, his lack of international caps in incomprehensible, for someone in his form. Strangely, although Scotland ignored Gordon, he was selected for a ‘Rest of the World’ team to play in West German defender Willi Schulz’s testimonial alongside Eusebio, Denis Law, Bobby Charlton and Bobby Moore. In fact for much of the 72/72 season, Alan was neck and neck with Gerd Muller and Eusebio for the European Golden Boot.
Partnering Alan Gordon up front was Jimmy O’Rourke who had made his Hibs debut as a 16 year old. Another vastly under-rated player, by those outside Leith, Jimmy was and remains a fans’ favourite and is still a welcome face on match days.
The manager Eddie Turnbull was considered by many to be a better coach that Jock Stein. He had been a member of the famous five forward-line who won three league titles and was the first British player to score a goal in European football. He won the Scottish Cup with Aberdeen before returning to Easter Road and will always be fondly remembered by the Hibs faithful.
The team were and remain known as ‘Turnbull’s Tornadoes’ after the song written by Chairman Tom Hart’s wife.
The following Saturday, nearly 18,000 turned up to see Hibs retain top spot with a late victory over East Fife, but during that game, John Brownlie suffered a broken leg and Alex Edwards, who had been continuously fouled eventually lost his patience and threw the ball away, earning a booking and a 56-day suspension which ended Hibs title challenge.
That famous eleven would never start another game in the green and white jersey. In fact the starting line-up only played 22 games together, winning 18, drawing two and losing two. One of the games they lost was in Lisbon to Sporting FC 2-1 in the first leg of a European Cup Winners Cup tie. They won the second leg 6-1.
Last word about the game goes to Harry Gilzean, the Evening News cartoonist whose ‘Fitba daft’ strip featured a Hibs fan and Hearts fan who attended every Edinburgh game and discussed what had happened.
In his cartoon following the seven nil game, the Hearts fan is sitting depressed with a can of beer whilst his wife attempts to cheer him up. He responds by telling her that she doesn’t understand as the Hibs fans will still be talking about that game for the next thirty years. It seems that even Harry underestimated what that day meant to the supporters.
To mark the occasion, author Ted Brack has written a book entitled ‘The Game on New Year’s Day. Hearts 0 Hibs 7,’ which is available in all good book shops and is excellent value at £15.99.

Tributes pour in for Hibs and Celtic legend Joe McBride

Scottish football fans are in mourning today following the news that former Hibs and Celtic star Joe McBride has died aged 74 at Glasgow Royal Infirmary.

Joe was taken to hospital on Saturday, after suffering a stroke, but hopes that he would make a full recovery, were quashed last night when the sad news broke that he had lost his battle.

Joe was signed by Hibs boss Bob Shankly, brother of Liverpool legend Bill, to replace Colin Stein who joined Rangers for a record £100,000 and scored an incredible 58 goals in 91 games.

Former teammate John Brownlie was just a youngster when Joe signed, but knew him well and kept in touch with him. He told Irish News Review: “I was just a kid and Joe was a senior player, but I did manage to play in the same team as him. He was very helpful, and a great talker, as well as a prolific goal scorer. He had a soft spot for the Hibs after he left, and the last time I saw him was at the annual Joe Baker memorial golf day at Wishaw and he looked great. It’s a very sad day.”

Such is his standing at the club; Joe is in the ‘Hero’ category of Jim Jeffrey’s book Hibernian Players and Managers 1946-2009, along with legends such as Joe Baker, Lawrie Reilly, Eddie Turnbull, Gordon Smith, Pat Stanton and Franck Sauzee.

Jeffrey starts his profile with the words “Joe McBride was simply a wonderful goal scorer, and only Ally McCoist and Willie Wallace in the post war era scored more goals than Joe.”

Author Ted Brack who had written four excellent books on Hibs, including Lawrie Reilly’s and Franck Sauzee’s autobiographies recalled Jos as a prolific goal scorer. He told the Irish News Review: “Joe was a prolific goal scorer. I remember one game in particular against Jock Stein’s Celtic when he scored both in a two nil win. One was an overhead kick which was one of the best goals I’ve seen at Easter Road. Pat Stanton had a great admiration for him as a player and a man. He reckoned that if Joe was one on one with the keeper you could put your mortgage on him scoring. He told me a story about the type of man Joe was. One day there was a bread strike in Glasgow and no-one could buy a loaf. Joe lived through there and had arranged to meet the team bus outside the ground instead of travelling through to Edinburgh first. As Pat was leaving he got a phone call from Joe asking if he could bring him a couple of loaves. Pat agreed, and a few minutes later, the phone rang again and Joe asked if he could get some more. Pat agreed, and Joe asked for 30 loaves. When they turned up at the ground, all Joe neighbours were there to collect their bread, which summed up the type of man he was, always thinking of others. I was very sad when I heard the news of his death. He was a man of many clubs, a man of many goals and a man of many friends”

Since the news of his death, many fans forums have been inundated with messages of sympathy for his family, highlighting the respect in which he was held by supporters of all clubs.

On Hibees Bounce, Haarlem Shuffler poster “One of the most memorable early matches I saw hanging onto a floodlight pylon behind the goals as Joe hammered two fantastic goals past Celtic in a game we were forecast to lose easily. What a player. Rest well man, cheered up my childhood.”

Joe the Hibby posted: “Deepest sympathy to Joe’s family and friends, a well thought of member of the Hibernian family, both as a player and a person.”

A spokesman for Hibs said today: “Our sincere thoughts are with his family at this difficult time, he left a lasting impression on our club and he will always be remembered with great affection.”

Meanwhile Hibs have announced that they will play East Fife at New Bayview Stadium on Saturday 14 July, kick off 2pm.

A large crowd is expected to see the debuts of Tim Clancy and Paul Cairney, along with the return of captain James McPake. New keeper Ben Williams is unlikely to start due to a lack of fitness.

Hibs Legend Des Bremner Hoping For Hampden Success

Hibs legend Des Bremner may be based in the Midlands, but he still keeps an eye on what’s happening at his old club, and hopes to celebrate watching Pat Fenlon’s men achieve something that he was unable to do; win the Scottish Cup at Hampden.

The former Easter Road favourite has taken time out from his busy schedule as managing director of the PFA Finance Division, to speak exclusively to Irish News Review about his fond memories of his time in the capital and his gratitude to former manager Eddie Turnbull for showing faith in him from a young age. He also sends a message of support to everyone connected with the club and hopes to join in the celebration afterwards.

Any footballer on a list which includes George Best and Franck Sauzee has to be special and no-one who saw him play would suggest that Des Bremner did not deserve to be in such exalted company. Only five men, who have worn the famous green and white jersey, have lifted the European Cup, and the modest Bremner is the only one to have started his senior career in Leith.

Eddie Turnbull signed the talented youngster from Highland League side Deveronvale after initially spotting him when he was Aberdeen manager, and clearly felt that Bremner would be one for the future as there were no vacancies in a midfield that included Alex Edwards, Pat Stanton, Alex Cropley and Arthur Duncan. The team which is still revered by the Hibs faithful had won the League Cup and beaten Hearts 7-0 at Tynecastle to go to the top of the league whilst Bremner learned his trade quietly in the reserves.

Unfortunately, during the next game against lowly East Fife, right back John Brownlie suffered a broken leg, and the manager turned to the young Highlander to replace him. Bremner made 11 appearances at right back that season as Hibs finished second, and when Brownlie regained his fitness, he reverted to his preferred position in midfield.

The industrious Bremner won his first and only full cap as a substitute for Kenny Dalglish in Scotland’s 1-0 victory over Switzerland at Hampden in April 1976, but the fact that he only appeared once for his country said more about the selection process than his ability.

Bremner played over 200 times for Hibs in an eight year spell, including a famous night in the UEFA Cup against Leeds when Hibs only lost on penalties against a club generally considered to be one of the best in Europe at the time. He scored 18 goals for the club.

As the decade ended, Hibs reached the Scottish Cup Final against Rangers. The first two games ended in scoreless draws, so it’s not surprising that Bremner does not remember much about the games, but the cup eventually ended up at Ibrox after a five goal thriller when an unfortunate Arthur Duncan own goal in extra time separated the teams.

After the final, Bremner moved to Aston Villa, winning the league championship and then the European Cup against Bayern Munich in the De Kuip stadium in Rotterdam. Villa manager Ron Saunders was quoted at the time as saying that Des Bremner was ‘The most under-rated footballer he ever purchased.’

Bremner made 221 appearances for Villa, scoring ten goals, before making the short move to Birmingham City in 1984 where he stayed for five years. He then played a few games for Fulham and Walsall before ending his playing career with Stafford Rangers.

The former Hibs star told Irish News Review: “I have many fond memories of my time at Easter Road. We had a team that was competing with Rangers and Celtic at that time but not quite making that final step in the league and cup competions. Eddie Turnbull was a great coach and I learned a lot from him in my early years at Hibs which stood me in good stead for the rest of my footballing career.

“The players we had in the team at that time also helped me make the transition into the first team that bit easier even though I was replacing their mate John Brownlie. You could say that one player’s bad break was in my case another player’s good break. I sometimes wonder where my football career would have taken me if I had not been given that opportunity at that time.

“The Cup Final is obviously one of the highlights of my time at Hibs and it is also one of the disappointments as well. I can’t remember too much about the games other than Arthur Duncan’s own goal that lost us the final game, a fine near post header but in the wrong goal.

“I would like to wish everybody involved with the forthcoming Cup Final, the club, the players, all the staff and the supporters the very best of luck on the day. I hope we are all celebrating winning the cup on the day as this would be a great ending to a very disappointing season and give us some encouragement for next season.”

The other European Cup winners to play for Hibs were Ronnie Simpson and Bertie Auld who were both members of the triumphant Lisbon Lions in 1967, George Best who won it with Manchester United the following year and Franck Sauzee who lifted the trophy with Marseille in 1993.