Penman Cup
Ever-Present Clubs
Fastest Cup Goal
John Lambie

Davie Irons
Cup-Winning Captains




Q Scott Cockburn says: 'Looking through some older Hearts records, I see mention of the Penman Cup in the late forties and early fifties. Hearts appear to have fielded mixed sides for these games and lost one final at home to Stenhousemuir. Can you tell me more about this tournament?'

A This competition started in 1905 and was originally contested by clubs from the Lothians and Fife. After World War One it expanded to take in teams from all over east and east/central Scotland.

There were some seasons when the tournament either wasn't played or wasn't completed and this was a growing problem in the 1950s and early 1960s. The last tournament appears to have been that won by East Fife in 1961-62. Overall, Raith Rovers were the most successful side, winning the trophy six times. The only Edinburgh side to win it were St Bernard's in 1907-08.

The match you refer to was on May 1st 1954 and far from being 'mixed' Hearts put out a strong team at home against Stenhousemuir. It included their celebrated trio of Conn, Bauld and Wardhaugh. Centre-half Freddie Glidden later skippered Hearts to their first Scottish Cup success for fifty years. Keeper Jimmy Watters was an ever-present in the League that season; right-back John Adie and left-half David Laing were first-team regulars. Left-back Tam McKenzie was a veteran of 12 years service at Tynecastle and right-half Bobby Dougan was, like the 'Terrible Trio,' a Scotland international.

I make that nine highly experienced players with only the wingers Cochrane and Goldie neither experienced or first-team regulars. It was all the more surprising then when Stenhousemuir (first post-war winners of the Penman Cup in 1945-46) ran out 4-2 winners.

Q Richard Aas
sends in this query from Norway. 'Which clubs have been ever present (continuous) in the Scottish League since its foundation in 1890?

A Technically speaking, none have, since the Scottish Premier League, which was established in 1998, broke away from the Scottish Football League (which was the body established in 1890) and is an autonomous body.

However, there are four clubs which have played league football continuously since 1890. Celtic, Hearts, Rangers and St Mirren were all founder members of the Scottish Football League and have played every season (either SFL or SPL) since then.

Of the seven other clubs that were founder members only Dumbarton are still in existence though they left the league in 1897 and rejoined in 1906.

Q Sean Graham-Mitie both asks and answers. 'Who has scored the quickest goal ever in the Scottish Cup history? I say it was John Hewitt for Aberdeen v Motherwell in a 1-0 win at Fir Park in 9.6 secs in 1982. Can you tell me if this is correct?'

A As far as I know you are correct but bear in mind that for many years goals weren't timed precisely so don't be surprised if an obscure claimant from the 19th century emerges to contest the record.

Q A query on The Great Lambini from Murray Duncan. 'Can you provide details of John Lambie's playing and managerial record please?'

A John Lambie played for just two senior clubs. He signed for Falkirk in 1960 from junior side Whitburn and remained at Brockville for nine years before joining St Johnstone in August 1969. Originally an inside-forward he converted to full-back at Perth. The highlight of his playing career was appearing for St Johnstone in their first ever major cup final when they lost 1-0 to Celtic in the League Cup in 1969-70.
All told he made 400 appearances in first class competitions, 301 of them in the League with all bar twelve of these in the top division. He scored 26 goals overall, twenty in the League.

He retired from playing in 1974 and appears to have been out of the game until he took over as Hamilton manager in 1984. Under his guidance the Accies won the First Division in 1985-86 - their first divisional title since 1904 and their first appearance in the top flight for twenty years. He was in charge when they famously knocked Rangers out of the Scottish Cup in 1987.

He became Partick manager for the first time at the start of 1988-89 but returned to Hamilton in Feb 1990 where he remained for just ten months before taking up the Firhill reins again. He won promotion with Thistle in 1992 and left at the start of 1995-96 for Falkirk. He parted company with the Bairns in March 1996 and was out of the game for almost three years before again assuming command at Firhill in March 1999.
His third spell in charge was his most successful, taking the Jags from the Second Division to the SPL. He retired in May 2003 but was persuaded to return briefly as a caretaker manager in December 2004 before retiring once more to spend more time with his pigeons.

Q Another of the game's veterans is the subject of Brian Bannister's question. 'I have tried to source the stats on the career of David Irons of Gretna. I know he was out of the senior game at Annan Athletic before returning to Gretna. I have tried various internet databases and can only find one that lists three teams he played for - Gretna, St. Johnstone plus one other. I believe he was at a few more but I can't find the info.'

A Davie Irons started his career back in 1979-80, making three league appearances for Queen of the South then dropping down into the Juniors with Kello Rovers before rejoining the senior ranks with Ayr United in 1984-85. He made 75 league appearances for Ayr, scoring 13 goals and also turned out three times in the League Cup and four times in the Scottish Cup but didn't score in either competition.

He signed for Clydebank in September 1986 and made 54 league appearances, scoring seven goals as well as one League Cup appearance and four in the Scottish Cup in which he scored once.

From there it was on to Dunfermline in March 1988 and 106 league appearances, scoring nine times and eight League Cup appearances with two goals and a further eight Scottish Cup appearances with no goals.

His next port of call was Firhill in August 1991 where he made 84 League appearances for Partick Thistle, scoring ten times. He also made four League Cup and two Scottish Cup appearances without scoring.

After that it was St Johnstone in the summer of 1993 and a further 52 league appearances and two more goals. There were four League Cup (one goal) and three Scottish Cup outings during his stay there.

In March 1996 it was back to Clydebank where he played 43 times in the league, scoring once and he made one appearance in both the League and Scottish Cups. As you point out he dropped out of league football, and aged 36 apparently for good before returning with Gretna when they joined the League in 2002. He has, to date, made 86 league appearances for them, scoring three times and also turned out twice in the League Cup, scoring once, and seven times in the Scottish Cup without scoring.

He's also played ten times in the Challenge Cup. Twice with Thistle, four times for St Johnstone, once for Clydebank and three times with Gretna.

All told that's 503 league appearances and 45 goals, 23 League Cup appearances and four goals, 29 in the Scottish Cup with one goal and a further ten appearances in the Challenge Cup for a grand total of 565 first-class appearances and 50 goals.

That's a lengthy career by any standards made all the remarkable by two prolonged absences from League football between the ages of 18 and 23 and again between 36 and 41.

Although he's featured in a few sides which were relegated, Davie won a First Division championship medal with Dunfermline in 1988-89 and also won promotion from the same division with Partick Thistle in 1991-92. With 17 league appearances this season (at the time of writing) the Gretna assistant manager looks a good bet to win a Third Division championship medal just a couple of months short of his 44th birthday.

Q Barry Slack wants to know if we can 'provide a list of Scottish Cup-winning captains since 1960?'
A I reckon the list below is an accurate one.
1960 Eric Caldow (Rangers) (Club captain Ian McColl was recalled to the side thanks to injury to Harold Davis but Caldow was skipper on the day)
1961 Ron Mailer (Dunfermline Athletic)
1962 Eric Caldow (Rangers)
1963 Bobby Shearer (Rangers) (Eric Caldow was club captain but was injured and unable to play in both the Final and the replay)
1964 Bobby Shearer (Rangers)
1965 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1966 John Greig (Rangers)
1967 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1968 Roy Barry (Dunfermline)
1969 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1970 Martin Buchan (Aberdeen)
1971 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1972 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1973 John Greig (Rangers)
1974 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1975 Billy McNeill (Celtic)
1976 John Greig (Rangers)
1977 Kenny Dalglish (Celtic)
1978 John Greig (Rangers)
1979 Derek Johnstone (Rangers)
1980 Danny McGrain (Celtic)
1981 Ally Dawson (Rangers)
1982 Willie Miller (Aberdeen)
1983 Willie Miller (Aberdeen)
1984 Willie Miller (Aberdeen)
1985 Danny McGrain (Celtic)
1986 Willie Miller (Aberdeen)
1987 Billy Abercromby (St Mirren)
1988 Roy Aitken (Celtic)
1989 Roy Aitken (Celtic)
1990 Alex McLeish (Aberdeen)
1991 Tom Boyd (Motherwell)
1992 Richard Gough (Rangers)
1993 Richard Gough (Rangers)
1994 Maurice Malpas (Dundee United)
1995 Paul McStay (Celtic)
1996 Richard Gough (Rangers)
1997 Ray Montgomerie (Kilmarnock)
1998 Steve Fulton (Hearts) (Gary Locke was club captain but injured and unable to play)
1999 Lorenzo Amoruso (Rangers)
2000 Arthur Numan (Rangers) (Lorenzo Amoruso was club captain but injured and unable to play in the Final)
2001 Tom Boyd (Celtic) (Boyd was club captain but Paul Lambert skippered the team at kick-off. Boyd came on as a substitute for Lambert)
2002 Barry Ferguson (Rangers)
2003 Barry Ferguson (Rangers)
2004 Jackie McNamara (Celtic )



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