John McPherson (footballer, born 1868)

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John McPherson
Personal information
Full name John McPherson
Date of birth (1868-06-19)19 June 1868
Place of birth Kilmarnock, Scotland
Date of death 31 July 1926(1926-07-31) (aged 58)
Place of death Scotland
Playing position Striker
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
–1888 Kilmarnock
1888–1890 Cowlairs
1890–1902 Rangers 176 (98)
National team
1888–1897 Scotland 9 (6)
1897–1902 Scottish League XI 5 (2)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

John McPherson (19 June 1868 – 31 July 1926) was a Scottish footballer who played for Kilmarnock and Rangers.


Early career[edit]

Born in Kilmarnock, McPherson started his career with his local side Kilmarnock F.C., moved to Cowlairs in 1888, then joined Rangers in 1890. He played mainly as a striker, but was often used in other positions including goalkeeper.[1]


McPherson played in the inaugural Scottish League season, 1890–91, where Rangers finished as joint champions with Dumbarton. McPherson's first recorded appearance for Rangers was in a friendly against English club Everton on 19 April 1890, and he scored in a 6–2 defeat at Ibrox.

His first League appearance, however, was in Rangers' first ever Scottish League match, on 16 August 1890 in a 5–2 win over Hearts at Ibrox, in which McPherson scored. McPherson scored 15 goals in Rangers' 18 matches in the League that season, including four in a 6–2 win over Cambuslang at Whitefield Park on 23 August 1890 (the first ever hat-trick scored in the Scottish Football League)[2] and five in an 8–2 win over St Mirren on 4 October 1890.

Despite Rangers' successful introduction to the Scottish Football League, they had to wait until season 1898–99 to win the League title again. It was done in style as Rangers won all of their 18 League matches, with McPherson netting 10 times. That remarkable season was the first of four consecutive League titles and McPherson made significant contributions to all of them, scoring nine goals in 1899–1900, seven in 1900–01 and three in 1901–02 — which proved to be his last season with Rangers.

McPherson also won three Scottish Cup medals with Rangers, the first in 1894, where he scored in five of Rangers' six matches, including the 3–1 final win over Celtic at Hampden. McPherson also scored in the 1897 final, where Rangers defeated Dumbarton 5–1. His third Scottish Cup winners medal came a year later, 1898, where Rangers defeated McPherson's former club Kilmarnock 2–0. His final recorded appearance for Rangers was in a 2–0 friendly defeat to Glentoran on 2 April 1902.

International career[edit]

McPherson was also a Scottish International, winning a total of nine caps and scoring six goals. He is one of four players named John McPherson, none of whom are related, to have represented Scotland at full international level. McPherson also played five times for the Scottish League representative side.[1][3]

International goals[edit]

Scores and results list Scotland's goal tally first.
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 29 March 1890 Ballynafeigh, Belfast  Ireland 3–1 4–1 British Home Championship
2 5 April 1890 Hampden Park, Glasgow  England 0–1 1–1 British Home Championship
3 26 March 1892 Tynecastle Park, Edinburgh  Wales 3–0 6–1 British Home Championship
4 26 March 1892 Tynecastle Park, Edinburgh  Wales 4–0 6–1 British Home Championship
5 27 March 1897 Ibrox Park, Glasgow  Ireland 1–0 5–1 British Home Championship
6 27 March 1897 Ibrox Park, Glasgow  Ireland 5–1 5–1 British Home Championship

Later life[edit]

A qualified engine–fitter,[1] McPherson maintained a close association with Rangers after his playing years, serving as a director from 1907 until his death in 1926 at the age of 58.

He is buried in Craigton Cemetery not far from Ibrox Stadium.[4]


His brother, David, was also capped.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Lamming, Douglas (1987). A Scottish Soccer Internationalists Who's Who, 1872–1986. Hutton Press. ISBN 0-907033-47-4.
  2. ^ Paul Smith & Shirley Smith (2005) The Ultimate Directory of English & Scottish Football League Grounds Second Edition 1888–2005, Yore Publications, p228 ISBN 0954783042
  3. ^ "John McPherson". London Hearts Supporters' Club. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
  4. ^

External links[edit]