Don Mackay

Donald Scrimgeour Mackay (born 19 March 1940) is a Scottish former professional football player and manager.

Don Mackay
Personal information
Full name Donald Scrimgeour Mackay[1]
Date of birth (1940-03-19) 19 March 1940 (age 81)
Place of birth Glasgow, Scotland
Position(s) Goalkeeper
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1958–1962 Forfar Athletic 104 (0)
1962–1972 Dundee United 243 (0)
1967Dallas Tornado (loan)[2] 7 (0)
1972–1974 Southend United 13 (0)
Teams managed
1978–1980 Nørresundby
1980–1984 Dundee
1984–1986 Coventry City
1987–1991 Blackburn Rovers
1991–1994 Fulham
2001 Airdrieonians
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Managerial career

After a spell coaching the Bristol City youth team between 1974 and 1978, where he was part of the backroom staff that won promotion to the then English First Division, he began his management career in Denmark with Nørresundby managing the local side Norresundby, gaining promotion in his first season there. He returned to Scotland in 1980 when he was appointed manager of Dundee, winning promotion to the Scottish Premier Division with the club, again in his first season in charge. After several high-profile departures from the Dundee first team, Mackay eventually left the club in 1983.

After a short time away from the game, Bobby Gould approached him to be his assistant at Coventry City. Bobby was sacked after a poor run of results and Don was asked to take charge, where the club staved off relegation by famously winning their last three games of the season, to retain their First Division Status.

Following the sack at Coventry, Mackay went to work as reserve-team coach at Rangers, alongside ex playing colleague Walter Smith and the manager Graeme Souness. Despite a successful spell at Rangers, Mackay wanted to manage in his own right, and therefore moved onto Blackburn Rovers. They narrowly missed the play-offs in his first season in charge, but did win the Full Members Cup, beating First Division Chelsea, Oxford United and Charlton Athletic along the way.

In the next two seasons at Blackburn they made the play offs, losing out on promotion both times. Following a relatively poor final season in charge (1990–91), he was relieved of his position early in the next season and went on to manage Fulham. His first season at Fulham was promising but results deteriorated the following year and following a defeat at Leyton Orient he was dismissed, results did not improve and Fulham were eventually relegated to the Fourth Division.

Mackay then worked as a scout for Arsenal, where he discovered the young Freddie Ljungberg.[3] Mackay then had a stint as chief scout of St Johnstone. He then teamed up with Steve Archibald at Airdrie.[4] Despite the financial difficulties experienced by the club, they won the Scottish Challenge Cup in their only season in charge.

He was employed by Middlesbrough as a scout from December 2001 through to June 2007,[5][6] before moving to join Leicester City under Martin Allen.[5][7] His role as sporting director was short-lived, however.[8]

Playing career

He was a goalkeeper and played for Forfar Athletic and made 104 appearances. He was then signed for Dundee United by Jerry Kerr, for whom he made 243 appearances. This is still the second most appearances made by a goalkeeper for Dundee Utd, behind keeping legend Hamish McAlpine. He was then given a free transfer by Jim McLean, after ten years of loyal service to the Utd cause, where he finished his 16-year professional playing career with Southend United after 13 appearances.


  1. "Don Mackay". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  2. "NASL-Donald MacKay".
  3. Holland, Jamie (12 September 1998). "Wenger pounces to sign super Swede". Irish Independent. Independent News & Media. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  4. "Airdrie have new Mackay in the frame". The Scotsman. Johnston Press. 20 July 2000. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  5. "Foxes recruit N'Gotty and Nielsen". BBC Sport. BBC. 4 June 2007. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  6. Paylor, Eric (6 June 2007). "Scouting quest as Mackay leaves". Evening Gazette. Gazette Media Company. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  7. "Don The Fox Bids Farewell". 4 June 2007. Retrieved 4 June 2007.[permanent dead link]
  8. "McClaren good for Rovers - Mackay". BBC Sport. BBC. 6 June 2008. Retrieved 19 October 2011.