First posted on Facebook on September 2nd, 2016
I’m not really one for programme collecting but occasionally I will plump for one at a cheap price if it intrigues me enough. The thing about Under-23’s ones are the players that make it and those that don’t and of course this one has a few of both.
If you look at the names on the back, you can see Alan Rough, Willie Miller with his best bud Alan Hansen too but you can also see players like Chic McClelland of Aberdeen, Willie McVie of Motherwell (one of the over-age players) and Gordon Smith of Kilmarnock or perhaps St. Johnstone as there was two with the same name in the pool. Of the Welsh side, there’s only a few names that stand out for me; Brian Flynn, Joey Jones and Mickey Thomas are among them.
The programme notes inside were obviously written by a not too well-informed person as there are one or two glaring mistakes but then again they didn’t have the internet to check their facts out on.
In the Introducing Scotland section Alan Hansen is said to have gained two full caps by this time, a whole three years before his first cap. It was his brother John that had won the caps mentioned. Rab Prentice of Hearts becomes Rabbie Prentice (poetry in motion no doubt), David Narey is listed as Don Narey and finally Des Bremner has become a David and not a Desmond.
As to the game Scotland would line-up as follows; Rough (Partick Thistle), John Brownlie (Hibs), Chic McClelland and Willie Miller (both Aberdeen), Willie McVie (Motherwell), Tommy Craig (Newcastle), Derek Johnstone (Rangers), Des Bremner (Hibs), Willie Pettigrew (Motherwell), Joe Craig (Partick Thistle) and Rab Prentice (Hearts). The subs used were Jim Stewart of Kilmarnock, Alan Hansen of Thistle and Gordon Smith of Kilmarnock.
Both Thistle and Kilmarnock were 1st Division teams at the time and both would be promoted, with Thistle as Champions. Incidentally this was not the first time that Miller and Hansen would play together. They did so the year before in a 2-1 friendly win over Sweden Under-23’s in Gothenburg, which would not be the last time Miller won a game 2-1 in that city.
One thing they did get right in the programme notes is when it says about Willie Pettigrew, “Scotland have the reassuring news that the leading goalscorer north of the border is currently amongst the goals”. And so it proved as Willie hit a double and with a goal from Tommy Craig Scotland won 3-2. Craig apparently missed with a woeful penalty which Pettigrew netted the rebound from.
Mike Smith, the Welsh manager said this about the Scots; “Our boys battled throughout . . . but what impressed me most was Scotland’s attitude. They played one-touch to our two and their passing was marvellous in the conditions.” Not often you hear that about a Scotland team.
Rough, Pettigrew, Tommy Craig and Des Bremner would all make their full International debuts a couple of months later v Switzerland at Hampden. For Craig and Bremner it would be their only caps. Pettigrew would score in the first couple of minutes to give Scotland the victory.
The programme has just been added to our ‘Other Programme’ section on the website.