Dougie Morrison
Dougie Morrison
Dougie Morrison
● Dougie Morrison, 1915 (DPJ)

born in Scotland

Dugald McKerrell Morrison was born on Tuesday, 20th March, 1894, in Renfrew.

The 5' 8 (11st 7lbs) midfielder signed for George Easton's Thistle on Saturday, 5th October, 1912, having most recently been with Denny Athletic.

Aged 18, he made his debut appearance on Tuesday, 15th October, 1912, in a 6-1 defeat at home to Clyde in the Glasgow & District Mid-Week League.

Dougie scored his first two goals for Thistle on Saturday, 18th January, 1913, in a 2-1 win at home to St Mirren in the SFL First Division.

He scored the last of his 5 goals on Saturday, 26th February, 1916, in a 3-1 win at home to Motherwell in the Scottish Football League.

He played his last game for the club on Saturday, 20th January, 1917, in a 3-0 defeat away to Rangers in the Scottish Football League, having clocked up 103 appearances as a Jag.

His club-list included Denny Athletic, Plymouth Argyle, Partick Thistle, Bo'ness and Blackpool.

Dougie died on Tuesday, 22nd November, 1938, in Maryhill, Glasgow, aged 44.

Bio Extra

Dougie's talent was spotted when he was playing boys football with Whiteinch Parklea in the Denny district. It was Denny Athletic who gave him his first taste of men's football, and he was involved when they pulled off a great win over Clydebank in the 1911 Junior Cup - the famous Patsy Gallacher was on the losing side that day, his last ever match at that grade! Like Patsy, Dougie also went on to bigger and better things, although he had a bit of a false start when a months trial at Plymouth Argyle in August 1912 came to nothing. In the Autumn of 1912 he signed with George Easton's highly regarded Partick Thistle team of the era, and he served the club well, initially in the centre forward role, but later settling as a defensive midfielder, who could play in the middle or on the right. He was described as an energetic and tremendously enthusiastic half-back, and was a great favourite with the supporters.

Dougie wrote himself into a peculiar chapter of Scottish football history in 1917. Almost 50 years before substitutes were allowed in Scottish League matches (the first official substitute in a Scottish League match was Paul Conn for Queen's Park v. Albion Rovers in a Division 2 match on 24th August 1966) Rangers, Thistle and the referee took it upon themselves to make up their own rules in a First Division match at Ibrox on 20th January 1917. Our man was injured after only 5 minutes play and the three parties agreed that Thistle could replace him with John McIntyre. The gesture was terrifically sporting and was reported positively in the press as “an innovation”. Presumably the clubs in question were reprimanded because the incident remained isolated in Scottish League Football for another 49 years! The sad footnote to the story is that Dougie never played for the Thistle first team again, was his injury responsible we wonder?

During the first world war, Dougie was employed as a ship's carpenter with a Bo'ness firm doing war work. Whilst there, he guested at half-back for Bo'ness. He formally transferred from Thistle to Bo'ness in late October, 1919. There's a suggestion that he went down south a few years later. According to the Edinburgh Evening News (23 November 1938) Dougie had a spell with Blackpool, although it's difficult to trace exactly when and to what extent he was involved there.

After his playing days were over, Dougie became assistant trainer to Jimmy Kennedy at Thistle in his mid 30s, and he held that role all of his days from thereon. He went everywhere with the reserve team throughout the 1930s, and his coaching was said to have been responsible for bringing on a consistently good line of talent to the first team. Dougie turned up for training as normal on the Tuesday afternoon of 22nd November, 1938. On the pitch he let it be known that he was feeling ill and was accompanied back to the dressing room by trainer Jimmy Kennedy, where he was hoping to lie down and rest for a while. Jimmy soon realised that Dougie was taking a bad turn and he quickly summoned a number of the players and manager Donald Turner for assistance, but it was all in vain, as Dougie collapsed and died within just a few minutes. He was a popular figure in and around the club, and the sudden nature of his demise, aged just 44, came as a great shock to everyone. At the time, his 18-year-old son, Alf, was on the books at Thistle and played for the reserves, following in his Dad's footsteps as a half-back (see 'Scrapbook' tab above).

The flags at the ground flew at half mast the following day, and a minutes silence was observed prior to the St Johnstone game at Firhill just a few days later. As for young Alf, he never did make the breakthrough as a senior player with any club. We can only imagine how different it might have been had his Dad been there to coach him through.


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