Robert Melrose
Robert Melrose
A. Player

probably born in Scotland

Robert Melrose was probably born in the 1860s or early 1870s, and is most likely to be Scottish. *

The forward joined Thistle in 1893.

He made his first known appearance on Saturday, 2nd December, 1893, in a 2-1 friendly defeat at home to Clyde.

Robert scored both of his only known goals for Thistle on Saturday, 14th April, 1894, in a 5-1 friendly win away to Linthouse.

He played his last known game for the club on Saturday, 26th May, 1894, in a 3-2 neutral-venue defeat against Battlefield in the Greenock Charity Cup, having appeared for the Thistle on at least 8 occasions.

His club-list included Partick Thistle, Morton and Airdrieonians.

We don't know where or when Robert 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

Robert, a left-sided forward, got his chance in the Thistle first team in the second half of 1893-94, Thistle's first-ever season in the Scottish Football League. He actually made his competitive debut in the final League game of the season, a rather disastrous 7-1 home defeat at the hands of champions, Hibernian. Thistle finished a creditable 5th nonetheless. Robert bounced back with back-to-back wins a couple of weeks later.

At Langlands Park (14 April) he netted a brace, the Jags landing a 4-1 win over Linthouse. Thistle took the lead against the run of play through our Robert, then sustained pressure led to an og for 2-0. Willie Paul scored just on h-t for a commanding lead. Melrose and Paul scored again but Linthouse kept at it and got a consolation goal. Had their forwards not been "decidedly off colour" (SR) it would have been less emphatic.

A week later, this was followed by a 3-2 win at Inchview, a not so friendly affair: “Cartvale created a very good impression” (SR) and their keeper had a grand game. Willie Paul was in great form and had some fine attacking runs. With Thistle leading 3-1 in the second half, Robert became just the third-known Thistle man to be sent off in a game, the result of a full-on scrap between he and Cartvale's #4. Some spectators “wanted to fight but…officials promptly bundled them out of the ground”.

Robert's last deeds as a Jag were in two end-of-season Greenock Charity Cup games at Cappielow, a 6-1 win over Johnstone (16 May) being followed by a 3-2 semi-final defeat vs. Battlefield (26 May). Perhaps the local committee men had their sights on him for, several weeks later, he signed for Morton! As is so often the case to this very day, Robert came back to haunt us in no time at all. 3,000 were at Inchview on 29th September 1894 for a 4-4 League thriller with Morton. Jags thought the points were in the bag at 4-2, but two goals from Robert Melrose meant a point apiece. "Melrose seems to have improved since leaving Partick Thistle" was the chat in the Referee. Ouch.

After a season at Cappielow, Robert made the switch to Airdrie in August, 1895. Just 2 weeks after signing he was in action at Broomfield… against Thistle! We were spared his "revenge" goals this time, but the home side won the Qualifying Cup tie (or so it was thought at the time) by an extremely controversial goal to nil. Late on, a shot hit the bar and bounced back into play. The ref gave a goal at which point Thistle goalie Pat Smith threatened the ref and struck him on the head at full-time. He was later suspended for 6 months. Thistle lodged an appeal on the grounds that ineligible players had represented Airdrie… and won! Robert was back at Inchview for the replay a week later and this time Thistle, back to full strength, won easily by 5 goals to 1. James McDonald and Robert Scott were ahead of Robert in Airdrie's pecking order. He never got a look-in in terms of League action in 1895-96 and was not retained for the following campaign.


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