Jimmy Watson (footballer, born 1877)

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Jimmy Watson
Personal information
Full name James Watson
Date of birth (1877-10-04)4 October 1877
Place of birth Motherwell, Scotland
Playing position Full back
Youth career
Burnbank Athletic
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1899–1907 Sunderland 211 (0)
1907–1910 Middlesbrough 103 (0)
National team
1903–1909 Scotland 6 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

James Watson (born 4 October 1877) was a Scottish footballer who played at full back. He won the Football League championship with Sunderland in 1901–02 and made six appearances for Scotland.


Early career[edit]

Watson was born in Motherwell and played for Burnbank Athletic before joining Clyde.


He joined Sunderland in 1899, after a trial at Sheffield United. His debut came in a 0–0 draw against Glossop North End on 24 February 1900.[1] He went on to make three league appearances that season. The following season he only missed two games as Sunderland finished runners-up, with Watson and Andy McCombie teaming up in front of goal-keeper Ned Doig. The three Scottish internationals appeared in a notable total of 109 league and cup games between February 1900 and February 1904 when McCombie was transferred to Newcastle United.[2]

He came to be considered as one of the finest full backs in the country. He possessed the intriguing nickname of "Daddy Long Legs" due to his arms and legs moving excessively when he ran.[3] In 1901–02 Watson only missed one game, as Sunderland claimed the Championship by a three-point margin over Everton.

Watson's first Scotland match came on 9 March 1903 in a 1–0 victory over Wales. In the next match, against England on 4 April, Watson was teamed in defence with his Sunderland colleagues, Doig and McCombie, resulting in a Scottish victory by 2 goals to 1.[4] He went on to play against England in each of the next two years, both matches won 1–0 by England.

Watson remained at Sunderland until 1907, when he moved to Middlesbrough. In his Sunderland career he played a total of 225 matches, never scoring.


He remained at Middlesbrough until 1910 making over 100 appearances. In March 1909 he was recalled to the Scotland team making appearances against Ireland and England.




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