Away From The Numbers

FOLKLORE LEGENDS:

EDDIE MCLEOD

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Eddie McLeod
Eddie McLeod was born in Glasgow in 1914. His footballing talents were nurtured and developed by Junior club Shawfield, where he soon became a deadly goalscorer and set a club goalscoring record before being snapped up by Portsmouth. Eddie's time at Fratton Park wasn't a great success and he soon returned to Scotland.

Eddie joined East Fife in Season 1935/36 and for the next three and a half seasons, Eddie, along with Tommy Adams, terrorized defences throughout Scotland down the right wing. Eddie's perfectly-timed passes to center-forward Robert McCartney created even more problems for defences and more goals for the Fife.

Whilst the historic 1937/38 Cup-winning season was such a success for East Fife, it was also a very successful season for Eddie personally - his best ever in an East Fife jersey.

He played in 30 of the Fife's 34 League games that season, scoring an amazing 32 goals, including five braces and two hat-tricks. He was also on the scoresheet four times in the Fife's record 13-2 victory against Edinburgh City at Bayview.

Eddie was also a very important figure in the Fife's Scottish Cup triumph, playing in all eleven matches and scoring four goals. In the Final against Kilmarnock, Eddie scored the game's opening goal after seventeen minutes and in the replay he netted the vital equalizer, with a spectacular eight-yard overhead kick, to make the score 2-2 and take the game into extra time.

A Scottish Cup Winners medal was an excellent reward for an excellent season for both East Fife and Eddie.

During that season, Eddie attracted a huge amount of interest from the top clubs in England and Scotland, with several watching scouts being a regular feature at games.

It was no real surprise to Fife fans when during the 1938/39 season, Manchester City came in to sign Eddie and on November 17th 1938, Eddie bid farewell to Bayview and headed down south to Maine Road for a fee of 3,000.

Eddie McLeod from a Topical Times football card
Eddie's East Fife career consisted of 102 appearances (87 in the League and 15 in the Scottish Cup), during which he scored an impressive 76 goals (69 League, 7 Cup). These goals see Eddie in the top 15 all-time East Fife goalscoring list, with the players above him playing in considerably more games than he did. Eddie's goals per game ratio is 0.75, meaning a goal every 120 minutes.

Unfortunately, the Second World War prevented Eddie from possibly becoming one of Scotland's best ever players. His days at Maine Road being curtailed by his Army service in North Africa.

Once the war was over he continued his career in England and had one season with Shrewsbury Town and then a short spell of playing non-league football before retiring.

A painter by trade, Eddie returned to Glasgow and set up a painting and decorating business.

Eddie McLeod died in the Summer of 1988, aged 74. Yet another player whose very promising career was sadly cut short by the war, the successful time he spent at Bayview will ensure that he will always be remembered in East Fife folklore.