First posted on Facebook, August 18th, 2016
Tom Boyd would go on to be capped 72 times for Scotland and is currently the fifth most capped Scottish player but where did it all begin for him. His first cap came as a Motherwell player where he would earn his first four, in 1990.
Scotland, up until this point seem to come out of World Cup Finals and suffer a malaise and no matter how they performed in the tournament; the transition into Euro Qualifiers with the expected change of players, seemed to catch them cold and we were quite quickly playing catch up in the our group.
Not so in the first game of the 1992 Qualifiers, which would also see Tom’s first involvement with Scotland. The Scots faced Romania at Hampden in September, 1990. The Romanians included players such as Dan Petrescu, Gheorghe Popescu, Matius Lacatus and the great Gheorge Hagi and with only 13 minutes on the board, they took the lead through Camatru and it looked like the usual start to the Qualifiers was about to be repeated.
However, it was to be a player making his debut who would make his mark in the 37th minute; John Robertson of Hearts stabbed in a McCoist knock down to equalise before Boyd was introduced in the 59th minute. Tom came on for Robert Connor of Aberdeen in what would be his last appearance for Scotland. In the 75th minute, Tom started a move with a positive run down the left hand side. Paul McStay would find Murdo MacLeod who fed the ball into the six yard box where McCoist was ready to pounce; 2-1 Scotland and that was how it finished.
Tom would play in midfield for Scotland in their next three games which included a win against Switzerland at Hampden and an away draw with Bulgaria; which meant Scotland had the ideal start to their campaign for the 1992 Euros which would see them through to the Finals in Sweden.
As for Tom, these were the last caps he would win as a Motherwell player and his next two would come during his brief stint with Chelsea; his other 66 would come as a Celtic player. He would feature in, only the victory over the CIS in the finals but would play in all the games of the 1996 Euros and of course the 1998 Finals, where he was unlucky to concede that bizarre own goal against Brazil.
His only goal for Scotland came in a World Cup Qualifier against Estonia at Rugby Park, where he does well to follow up his rebounded shot. An own goal by Janek Meet would give Scotland a 2-0 win which was vital in our Qualifying for the World Cup. I will post this today so look out for it.
Tom would captain Scotland five times and his final cap would come in September, 1981 as Scotland lost 2-0 in the Stade Roi Baudouin, Brussels to Belgium; a defeat that would see Scotland fail to reach the 2002 World Cup.