Alex Cairns
Alex Cairns
Alex Cairns
● Alex Cairns, 1970 (PIE)

probably born in Scotland

Alexander Cairns was born Thursday, 30th November, 1950, in Glasgow.

The 5' 7 (11st 0lbs) defender joined Davie McParland's Thistle for training in the close season of 1973.

Aged 22, he made his sole appearance on Monday, 6th August, 1973, in a 2-1 friendly win away to Stenhousemuir.

There were no goals for Alex in his one-off appearance for Thistle.

His club-list included Eastercraigs, Millerston Thistle, Kilmarnock, Partick Thistle, Queen of the South, RVV Rijswijk and PDK.

Bio Extra

The teenage Alex had been playing in the amateur grade with Millerston Thistle, who had been playing in the top-flight from 1966-67 onwards after back-to-back titles & promotions. With Alex, they won the Hall Cup in 1968-69. Alex turned professional in October 1969, signing with Kilmarnock just before his 19th birthday. At inside left, he made his competitive debut for Killie in a 3-0 League defeat to Celtic at Parkhead on 14th November 1970. Our profile photo was taken pre-match in a team line-up shot from that day. He came to be known as a utility player, often deployed as an inside forward but more commonly regarded as a left back as his career developed. His debut marked a rich period, with Alex registering more than 50 appearances in 18 months. However, he faded from the first team picture as season 1972-73 progressed, and by the summer of 1973 was on the look out for a new club.

In June 1973, Davie McParland brought Alex into the fold for training at Firhill. He was in the squad for a pre-season charity friendly against Hearts Reserves at Dalbeattie and featured in the reserves team for 3 months. Although not formally signed, Alex did appear in the (massive) squad line-up photograph for the new season. In what proved to be his only first-team appearance, he came off the bench in a friendly against Stenhousemuir at Ochilview in August 1973. Also making his debut that night (we think) was Alan Hansen. For the first 30 minutes it was all Stenhousemuir, and two fine last-ditch tackles by Nobby Clark saved the day. Thistle finally got into the game and Tommy Rae shot home (30) followed by Alan Munro (32) with a fine solo run and finish. Stenhousemuir's goal came after half-time from the penalty spot. Alex's last appearance, at left back, was against Rangers Reserves at Ibrox, a 1-1 draw on 8th September 1973.

With his match fitness restored, Alex signed a permanent deal with Queen of the South on 19th September 1973. He racked up 32 appearances in the Second Division campaign in his first season, the Doonhamers finishing 4th, 9 points behind his old Kilmarnock mates who were duly promoted as runners-up. What happened next for Alex in footballing terms is unclear. He was registered at Queens for a few seasons, but made no more League appearances. Queen of the South fans remembered him for a long time as an excellent left back, so perhaps an injury curtailed his involvement?

Away from the football, Alex worked as a draughtsman in the oil industry, and this led to his relocation to Holland at some point in the 1970s. He was a man who liked to keep himself fit, and he continued to play in Dutch football, albeit at a lower level. We know that he played for the now defunct RVV Rijswijk and that, as late as 1986-87, he was playing in the Hague with PDK, another club which no longer exist.


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