Fond farewell to cup hero

Cup win­ner dies at 92

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Mur­ray Spooner

Trib­utes have been paid to a leg­end of Clyde FC who was piv­otal in bring­ing the Scot­tish Cup to Ruther­glen. Fans ex­pressed their con­do­lences to the fam­ily of Davie Laing af­ter his pass­ing on Satur­day. He played over 60 games for the Bully Wee. Among them were the 1955 Scot­tish Cup fi­nal and re­play against Celtic when Davie turned in man-of- the­match dis­plays to help the team take the tro­phy back to Shaw­field.

The fam­ily of Clyde leg­end Davie Laing have paid trib­ute to the man who played a vi­tal role in bring­ing the Scot­tish Cup to Ruther­glen.

Davie, who passed away on Satur­day at the age of 92, was adored by sup­port­ers of the Bully Wee dur­ing his time at Shaw­field from 1954 to 1956 as a ‘skil­ful wing-half ’.

At a fee of £6,000, Davie was sold from Hearts to Clyde and went on to make more than 60 ap­pear­ances.

Among those matches was the his­toric Scot­tish Cup vic­tory over Celtic in 1955 when he stood firm in the defence as the Bully Wee tri­umphed 1-0 in a re­play.

His daugh­ter, Va­lerie Dray, was too young to re­mem­ber her dad in his Clyde days but loved hear­ing about Davie’s sto­ries as a player.

She said: “It’s the last thing he re­mem­bered, he had Alzheimer’s but could re­mem­ber his foot­ball ca­reer.

“If you men­tioned Clyde he could re­mem­ber what he did in the cup fi­nal against Celtic. It was lovely be­cause people could talk to him about that.

“It was the high­light of his ca­reer and he was very proud of that be­cause it was such a big part of his time in foot­ball.”

Born in Fife, Davie was brought to Tynecas­tle by then man­ager Davie McLean. His de­but how­ever, was de­layed af­ter he joimed the Navy in 1942. But he re­turned to play over 250 games for the Ed­in­burgh side.

In Septem­ber 1954, he was sold to Clyde and was im­me­di­ately recog­nised as one of club’s best sign­ings dur­ing that time. As a skil­ful, for­ward-think­ing de­fender, with pass­ing, tack­ling and shoot­ing abil­i­ties, Davie was also known for his long throw-ins.

And his tal­ents shone through dur­ing the Scot­tish Cup run which saw wins over Al­bion Rovers, Raith and Falkirk be­fore a semi-fi­nal tri­umph against Aberdeen.

Al­though Celtic took the lead in the fi­nal, Clyde bat­tled back to earn a re­play and even­tu­ally brought the cup to Ruther­glen for the sec­ond time af­ter Tommy Ring’s solo goal in the re­play.

Match re­ports at the time named Davie man of the match in both games and de­scribed him as “the best buy” Clyde had made in years.

The club’s rel­e­ga­tion and some cost-cut­ting mea­sures saw him leave Shaw­field but he will al­ways be re­mem­bered as a true leg­end of the Bully Wee dur­ing their time in Ruther­glen and went on to be in­ducted in their Hall of Fame.

Davie, who also tried his hand as a jour­nal­ist and ref­eree, played for Hiber­nian, Gilling­ham, Mar­gate and Can­ter­bury City be­fore re­tir­ing – and his daugh­ter was glad to have got the chance to see her dad in ac­tion dur­ing the lat­ter parts of his ca­reer.

Val said: “He trav­elled the world with his foot­ball. Foot­ball was his life.

“He had a good life and did everything he wanted to do – a foot­baller, a jour­nal­ist, a qual­i­fied ref­eree and a phys­io­ther­a­pist.

“The word ev­ery­one uses, whether of his play­ing days or at the care home, was that he was a gen­tle­man.

“As a fa­ther he was strict but not overly strict. He was fair and lov­ing and fam­ily meant everything to him.”

Davie’s fu­neral will be in Fife and de­tails will be an­nounced on the Clyde FC web­site. All are wel­come.

Scot­tish Cup win Davie Laing – hands in the air – cel­e­brates as Clyde score against Celtic

Tal­ent Davie was famed for his long throw-ins and de­fen­sive abil­i­ties

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