Colin Jackson, Rangers legend has passed away following a long fight with Leukaemia. ‘Bomber’ was one of the mainstays of the Rangers team in the seventies along with Peter McCloy, John Greig and Tom Forsyth although Colin was to miss out on the European Cup Winner Cup triumph in 1972.
He will never be classed as a Scotland legend as he only ever played in eight games, all of which he was unbeaten in. A record that Gordon Greer equalled on Friday night against Qatar.
Colin made his debut in a friendly against Sweden in Gothenburg on April 16th, 1975. Also making their debut that night was fellow Ranger Stewart Kennedy and Ted MacDougall of Norwich City. Billy Hughes of Sunderland would also come on for his only appearance in the second half. Colin played alongside of Frank Munro of Wolves in defence. Sweden opened the scoring through Sjoberg in 44 minutes and MacDougall scored the equaliser with 4 minutes to go, perhaps the closest Colin came to defeat in a Scotland shirt.
A month later, Colin made way for Martin Buchan and Gordon McQueen coming back into the side but replaced Buchan after 27 minutes in a one nil friendly win over Portugal. In his third game, Colin started alongside McQueen against Wales at Ninian Park. Scotland would go two down within 35 minutes with Toshack and Flynn scoring. However, in the second half Colin provided the springboard for the comeback with his only goal for Scotland in 54 minutes. Bruce Rioch completed the scoring eight minutes later.
Jackson would miss a few games after this but would return in October ’75 for a Euro Qualifier game against Denmark at Hampden. John Greig, fellow Rangers legend returned to the side after a four year break for a final cap to play alongside Jackson in defence. Goals from Dalglish, Rioch and MacDougall saw Scotland win 3 – 1. Colin kept his place in the side for another qualifier against Romania at home, which saw Scotland slip to a one all draw with Rioch scoring again. Colin would play in all three 1976 Home International games alongside Rangers teammate Tom Forsyth. Scotland won the Championship in a whitewash that year with firstly a 3 -1 win over Wales with Willie Pettigrew, Bruce Rioch (again) and Eddie Gray scoring. Next up was Northern Ireland and a resounding 3 nil win with this time with Archie Gemmill, Don Masson and Kenny Dalglish scoring.
The final match of the three saw Scotland triumph 2-1 over England with Don Masson equalising Mike Channon’s early goal and Kenny Dalglish’s lethal finish through Clemence’s legs giving Scotland the win.
And there it ended, Jackson would never play again for Scotland despite the triumph of 1976 Home Internationals, come September he was replaced by Martin Buchan but it would be the defensive partnership of Tom Forsyth and Gordon McQueen that would keep Colin out of the national side.
All our thoughts at Scotland Epistles go to Colin’s family at this sad time.
First posted on Facebook 8th June, 2015