more leicester links

Scottish Football Answers to Questions
Post Reply
leicester
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 3:22 pm
Contact:

more leicester links

Post by leicester » Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:29 pm

Told you I'd be a pest...

Any further info of any sort on the following, please? [b/d/career/post-football]....

Noted for his all-action enthusiasm at full-back, 200-game Arbroath stalwart Attilio Pietro Becci (b. Arbroath, c1914; d. Arbroath, 1980) guested for City during 1943/4. A 1932 signing for his local Scottish club, where he was familiarly known as ‘Teel’, he also turned out for Notts County during WW2, and represented a high-quality British Army XI in Naples in 1945. He played for Forres Mechanics postwar. The exotic name was inherited from a Parma-born father who ran an Arbroath fish-and-chip shop. (8 apps)

A degree of mystery still surrounds the club affiliations of the C Gardiner who briefly assisted City in October and December 1942. The inside-forward, who scored on his debut in an away win at Mansfield, was serving (and playing) with COD (Old Dalby) at the time, when he was variously described as being on Portsmouth’s books, an ex-Forest player, and a Montrose man! [Charlie Gardiner (b. Glasgow, 17.3.1913), a forward whom Nottingham Forest signed from Roselea in 1935, and who subsequently served Mansfield Town in 1938/9, before moving to Montrose on the eve of war, seems by far the most plausible suspect.] (2 apps; 1 goal)

Six-footer Bill Leitch, signed from Wishaw High School by Motherwell in May 1942, was regarded primarily as a reserve centre-half by the Fir Park club. Yet he was mainly played by City, during the January to April 1945 period, at centre-forward; claiming a hat-trick on his debut in an 8-3 win over Mansfield Town, and finishing 1944/5 as the club’s joint top scorer. His subsequent Scottish League record with Motherwell was equally remarkable: consisting of a five-goal return from five starts in 1946/7. Yet. oddly, he was still rapidly offloaded to Dumbarton. (12 apps; 12 goals)

An 18-year-old on Rangers’ books, W J Letters partnered his fellow Scottish amateur, Ken Chisholm, at outside-left in a home defeat by Southampton in February 1946. (1 app)

A COD (Old Dalby) player reputed to be attached to Third Lanark, A McAskill twice turned out at outside-right for City during October and November 1942. He additionally represented the Northern Command military select side with COD teammate Gardiner. (2 apps)

Motherwell’s John McInally briefly appeared in City colours at inside-right for a pair of away fixtures in London (at Fulham and Tottenham) in September 1945. (2 apps)

An NCO in the Military Police, Bobby McNeil was a Hamilton Academicals player (as had been his father Bob, better known as an inter-war Chelsea star) when he turned out at outside-right for City in the first game of 1943/4, away to Mansfield Town. (1 app)

Dundee United winger Ian S Smart had his only City outing on the left flank at Walsall in September 1944. Originally with Dundee Violet, he served the Tannadice club (latterly as a full-back) until 1952, while also following a schoolteaching career. (1 app)

Two months later [ie Nov 1943], Third Lanark’s A Sutton wore the City spearhead’s shirt at Derby. A Military Policeman, he had been assisting the Colts from the beginning of 1943/4. (1 app)

Forward John H Wattie was climbing the status ladder of Scottish football when war broke out, having moved from Inverurie Loco Works to Forfar in the 1937 close season, and having signed for Dundee two years later. He came to City’s notice (rather inevitably) in 1942/3, when playing locally for COD (Old Dalby) and breaking scoring records with ease: in fact he scored a hat-trick or better in seven successive Senior League games from September to November that season. Nonetheless, Nottingham Forest were the first club to introduce him to senior regional fare, at the start of 1943/4. His City outings came in successive matches in April 1944 (in the outside-left berth), and a week after the third, he helped COD beat City in the Final of the Senior Cup. John, a minister’s son and a former insurance worker, was still on Dundee’s initial postwar roll-call, but his subsequent moves are unknown to us. (3 apps; 1 goal)

Any further info v gratefully received,

PT

jeroen
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2005 11:23 pm
Location: Netherlands
Contact:

Post by jeroen » Sat Nov 21, 2009 1:24 pm

John Joseph McInally born Blantyre 17-5-1915

Wishaw Juniors
17-4-1934 Celtic
8-9-1937 Arbroath
12-1-1940 Motherwell
1941 RAF
Sep 1943 Albion Rovers
Leicester
Nov 1945 Clachnacuddin
Demobbed March 46
12-8-1946 Arbroath
7-10-1946 Queen of the South
Nov 1946 Cowdenbeath
1947-48 Ballymena United
30 Sep-1 NOV 1948 Albion Rovers
to Los Angeles
Sep 1951 Wigtown and Bladnoch

He was a bricklayer by trade and a Physical Training instructor in the RAF

Source: Alphabet of the Celts by Eugene MacBride, Martin O'Connor and George Sheridan

leicester
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 3:22 pm
Contact:

Post by leicester » Mon Nov 23, 2009 11:11 pm

Sincere thanks, Jeroen. Every little helps (and that was more than a little). Utterly embarrassed, though, that Eugene's book was from our very own Leicester-based publishers (now sadly defunct), and I hadn't clocked the connection.

PT

Ben1967
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:49 pm
Contact:

Re: more leicester links

Post by Ben1967 » Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:54 pm

I'm one of John Wattie's grandchildren and remeber tales of his wartime footballing career. After the midlands he was posted to Portsmouth and played there and then was over to France and Belgium. From what I know he played little after the war as he had a knee injury. He did stay involved in football and refereed in the Grampian area (I've got his whistle). As youn boys he took my brother and me to Pittodrie to see the glorious Ferguson team - Kennedy Archibald Strachan and co.

leicester
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 3:22 pm
Contact:

Re: more leicester links

Post by leicester » Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:38 pm

Hi Ben,

Sincere thanks for the response.

You've sent me back to my records, and I do find one appearance for Portsmouth in March 1940 for a player called Wattie, allegedly guesting from Forfar – a coincidence that seems too trite to be merely that; especially given the (understandable) inexactitude of so much football reporting at that time. So, yes, we do seem to be talking about the same guy (even if we've got the Midlands/South Coast chronology a bit awry); and I'm happy that he passed on his passion for the game to you even if his own role in it was sadly foreshortened.

Sheer pedantry demands that I follow up with a few queries, though. Do you (or any of your relations) know what the middle initial H actually stood for, and/or do you have dates/places of birth/death for him? Or any other details of your granddad's post-footie career? Sorry if this seems intrusive, but I'd rather honour anyone who ever managed to play for my club with as much factual info as I can...

Cheers,

PT

Ben1967
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:49 pm
Contact:

Re: more leicester links

Post by Ben1967 » Sun Sep 11, 2011 6:13 pm

Hi

He was born in 1916, January (I'll check) and died c. 1990 (I'll get you the exact date) in Banchory where he's buried. The H was a family name 'Hildred' (which he wasn't too keen on). He also had the name Francis but this could have been a confirmation name as he converted to Catholicism. The Wattie's are from the Aberdeen/Grampain area although John's dad (also John) actually married in London in 1914.
John H Wattie's uncle (he had many) was one Harry Wattie , a famous player for Hearts who died in 1916 at the Battle of the Somme. He and several other of the Hearts first team are remembered by a monument in Edinburgh. One of his aunts married the Hearts player Paddy Crossan who survived the war, captained the team and set up Paddy's bar on Rose Street (Edinburgh). This is all from distant memories of chats (in the eighties) - so details are a little sketchy.
John spent his working life post war in the Insurance industry, living in Dundee and moving to Banchory c. 1975 (to work in Aberdeen). On a personal note, he was (in my biased opinion) a great man - honourable, dignified and generous to a fault.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests