Scot Symon, international footballer and highly-successful manager in both Scotland and England, was born James Scotland Symon in 1911in Errol on Tayside, half-way between Perth and Dundee. His father was a local, sanitory inspector.
School would take him to rugby-playing Perth Academy but Scot pursued his interest in the round-ball game by playing at junior level with Dundee Violet, there representing Scotland.
It led to him, aged nineteen, signing for Dundee as half-back developing capability over the next five seasons in all three positions across the line. Interest from down south resulted, with him in 1935 joining Portsmouth and becoming club captain the following year.
However, after relegation in 1938 was narrowly avoided over the summer Symon signed for Rangers. Meantime he had been selected for Scotland, but as a cricketer, a bowler, against the touring Australians and taking a remarkable five for thirty-three. Success at Ibrox was also to follow. The club took the league title at the end of the season by when Scott had won his first and, as it happened, only Scotland cap. He also was married that summer, in Portsmouth to a local, Hampshire girl, Doreen Pearn.
The Second World War would both interrupt and effectively bring to an end Symon's playing career. In 1945 he went back to Rangers but was on the team's fringes until retirement in 1947. But management called immediately, with six seasons including two League Cup wins and then south once more for one at Preston and an FA cup Final. That was until Rangers came calling, turning to him as the replacement of the retiring Bill Struth.
Symon remained at Ibrox for thirteen seasons. In that time he won fifteen trophies and reached the European Cup Winners' Cup Final in 1961, six hundred and seventy-four games played in all, four hundred and thirty-nine won. However he and the club would part company in 1967, he would have a season out and then move on to Partick Thistle for three mixed years.
By then, 1971, Scot was sixty years old. He and Doreen had had and by then raised two children, a daughter and a son, both born in South Glasgow. And it would be there, in Dumbreck and after a long retirement, that Scot would pass away in 1985 to be cremated at Linn Crematorium. But it may have been that his ashes were finally scattered at his parents' grave back in Errol. Certainly the stone in the village's Parish Church Graveyard recalls him, his parents and other members of the family.
1935-38 - Portsmouth
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