Willie Peat
Willie Peat
Willie Peat
● Willie Peat, 1947 (DET)

born in Scotland

William Alexander Peat was born on Thursday, 8th January, 1920, in Maryhill, Glasgow.

The forward signed for Donald Turner's Thistle on Monday, 5th June, 1939, having most recently been with Maryhill.

Aged 19, he made his debut appearance on Saturday, 16th September, 1939, in a 3-1 friendly defeat away to Clyde.

Willie scored his first goal for Thistle on Saturday, 23rd September, 1939, in a 4-2 friendly defeat away to Celtic.

He scored the last of his 21 goals on Monday, 10th April, 1944, in a 3-3 draw away to Rangers in the Southern League, thereby joining our scoring finale club.

As mentioned, that turned out to be his game for Thistle, having appeared as a Jag on 77 occasions.

His club-list included Maryhill, Partick Thistle, Hibernian, St Johnstone, Stirling Albion, Pollok, Montrose, Poole Town, Nithsdale Wanderers and Brechin City.

Willie died on Tuesday, 23rd March, 1993, in Perth, aged 73.

Bio Extra

Willie was a local boy, always destined to be a Jag. The left winger played with Maryhill in his teenage years, and joined Thistle as a 19-year-old in the close season of 1939, the dawning of the disruptive World War II era. One win ten was a poor start for Willie, but New Years day 1940 was a turning point as he scored in a 3-2 Southern League win over Clyde.

5,000 were at Firhill on 20th May 1941 for the Glasgow Charity Cup tie with Clyde - a 12 goal thriller in which the 21-year-old Willie bagged a hat-trick for the Jags. Amazingly Thistle were 4-0 ahead at h-t and 5-up just after - Newall, McKennan (2) and Peat (2) getting the goals. A penalty reduced the lead then Sharp made it 6-1. Thistle began to showboat but were shocked by 4 quick goals before our man got his hat-trick. Willie played alongside some great players; Ma Ba' McKennan was the star attraction according to the Daily Record.

In season 1943-44, Willie was registered at Maryhill on an "A" professional form, meaning that he could turn out at the drop of the hat as a trialist for any senior team without re-registering. Willie and Thistle took advantage of this status on Easter Monday 1944. It was his one and only appearance for Thistle in 1943-44, but what a game it was, his last as a Jag. Thistle made the short journey to Govan to fulfil the 30th and final engagement of that season’s Southern League campaign. Rangers were runaway winners of the League, and were renowned for their "iron curtain" defence at the time. In his last game for the club, Willie put Thistle ahead in the 17th minute and Bill Shankly doubled the advantage on the half hour mark. Just 5 minutes later, a low drive from James Colgan put Thistle 3 goals up; dreamland! Rangers reduced the deficit to 2 within minutes and it was 3-3 before the second half was 20 minutes old. It was ding-dong 'til the end and Thistle could just as easily have won it as lost it. In the end, to secure a 3-3 draw at Ibrox was a very good result at that time, albeit it was tainted by the fact that a 3 goal lead was squandered. Somewhat fantastically, Willie also played for Maryhill against St Roch's that evening (see 'Scrapbook' tab) and was fresh enough to get on the scoresheet once more, what a day!

Willie formally rejoined the senior grade in the summer of 1944, signing with Willie McCartney's Hibs, with whom he played for 3 seasons, appearing in 58 competitive games, scoring 13 times. This was a very fine Hibs side who were going from strength to strength. They got to the Summer Cup final in 1945; Willie played at inside left at Hampden, but had to settle for a silver medal as they lost out by two goals to nil… to Partick Thistle! Ouch. Hibs were runners-up to Rangers in the Southern League in season 1945-46 and also got to the Victory Cup final that season, where they lost 3-1 to Rangers. Willie played at inside right that day in front of 100,000 at Hampden. He must have been getting sick of these runners-up medals by now. Hibs also finished 2nd in the re-launched SFL First Division of 1946-47 and also the re-launched Scottish Cup in the same season, although Willie didn't play in the 2-1 loss to Aberdeen at Hampden Park.

In June 1947 he moved on St Johnstone where he spent 5 very succesful seasons on a personal level. The Saints won the Scottish League B Division Supplementary Cup in 1949 - gold at last! Ever-keen to play, Willie played for several clubs of varying levels after leaving Muirton Park. He was a winner again in 1953-54 with Brechin City, champions of the Scottish League C Division Chamionship. He received a handsome silver statuette as a momento of the success. The 7 inch figure took the form of a footballer, with a ball mounted on a plinth. Thistle provided the opposition to St Johnstone for Willie's benefit match, played at Muirton Park on Monday, 28th April, 1952. 2,000 witnessed an unbefitting 0-0 draw!

After his footballing career was over, Willie returned to live in Perth (and later Scone) and joined the T.A. where he still played football as well as coached. He was employed locally a sheet metal worker until he retired. He died after a short illness at the age of 73, his funeral taking place at Perth Crematorium on the 30th March 1993, 7 days after his passing.


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