John McLachlan
John McLachlan
John McLachlan
● John McLachlan, 1912 (VNR)

born in Scotland

John McLachlan was born on Thursday, 26th April, 1888, in Dumfries.

The forward signed for George Easton's Thistle on Saturday, 21st June, 1919, having most recently been with Aston Villa.

Aged 31, he made his debut appearance on Saturday, 23rd August, 1919, in a 2-0 defeat away to Albion Rovers in the Scottish Football League.

There were no goals for John during his spell with Thistle.

He played his last game for the club on Saturday, 18th October, 1919, in a 6-2 defeat away to Hibernian in the Scottish Football League, having appeared as a Jag on 6 occasions.

His club-list included St Cuthbert Wanderers, Dundee, Aston Villa, Partick Thistle and Aberdeen.

We don't know where or when John died. *

* If you can help us to improve any of these marked points on The Thistle Archive, then please do get in touch →

Bio Extra

The son of John McLachlan (Inn Keeper) and Mary McLachlan (née Halliday) who were married in Dumfries in 1882. In the 1901 census, the 12-year-old John was living in Kircudbright with his 5 brothers - William (15), James (10), Albert (8), Duncan (6) and Frederick (4). Older brother David (19) and sister Marion (17) had left the family home by then. Keen football historians will note that three footballing brothers (John, Bert & Fred) were all under that same roof. Both John and Fred would turn out for Thistle.

The 22-year-old inside forward signed his first professional contract with Dundee in May 1910, and spent two full seasons with the Dark Blues, scoring 9 goals in 46 first class appearances. From there, he spent 3 seasons with Aston Villa where he netted 3 goals in 17 League appearances and was mainly deployed as a capable back-up. Villa were truly a first-class outfit at that time and were runners-up in John's first two seasons. His younger brother Bert joined him in Birmingham for season 1913-14, but they played together on only one occasion - a 1-3 loss to Newcastle United on Saturday, 4 April 1914.

John's wartime activity is unclear, but he signed for Partick Thistle in the summer of 1919. The 31-year-old turned out in 6 League games by mid October, winning 2 (both at Firhill) versus Hamilton (4-3) and Queen's Park (2-0) but losing 4, including a 6-2 loss away to Hibs which proved to be his last first-team appearance for the Jags. John's younger brother, Fred, signed for Thistle a couple of months after he did and they actually played together in 3 successive League games in the autumn of 1919, versus Queen's Park, Clyde and Aberdeen.

By the end of the season, John's future at Firhill seemed uncertain and he was loaned out to Aberdeen at the behest of another of his young brothers, Bert, who was a colossus with the Pittodrie side at that time. Thistle held John's registration papers until 1922-23, but he saw no first team action anywhere in the 1920s.


Historian's note: Some sources list this player as John Andrew MacLachlan, but his birth and census records list him as John McLachlan. We've seen a year of death quoted as 1944, but we cannot find a match for this at Scotland's People and are reluctant to include it as things stand, life details for this player having been notoriously scrappy online over the years.

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