Jimmy Smith (footballer, born 1911)

James Smith (24 September 1911 – 5 December 2003)[2] was a Scottish professional footballer, who played for East Stirlingshire and Rangers. During his time at Rangers he scored 249 goals in 259 games.[3]

Jimmy Smith
Personal information
Full name James Smith
Date of birth (1911-09-24)24 September 1911
Place of birth Slamannan, Scotland
Date of death 5 December 2003(2003-12-05) (aged 92)
Position(s) Centre forward
Youth career
Argyll Rob Roy
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1928 East Stirlingshire 15 (16)
1928–1946 Rangers 234 (225)
Total 249 (241)
National team
1934–1937 Scotland 2 (1)
1941 Scottish League XI[1] 1 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Club career

Smith moved from East Stirlingshire to Rangers aged 17 in December 1928, having scored more than a goal per game in Scottish Division Two during his five-month spell at Firs Park,[4] and made his professional debut against Hamilton Academical in March 1929. He only featured twice in his first season at Ibrox and just once the following season, although he scored in a 3–1 win against Dundee. In season 1930–31, he scored 21 goals in 21 games, including five in an 8–0 defeat of Clyde, as Rangers won the League championship for the fifth season running.[5]

After Rangers missed out on a sixth successive League championship in season 1931–32, during which Smith had scored five goals in eight games, the championship returned to Ibrox the following season and Smith finished top scorer with 34 goals, including four hat-tricks.

In season 1933–34, Smith and striking partner Bob McPhail, notched up 72 goals between them in 47 games as Rangers continued their dominance of Scottish football. Smith also collected his first Scottish Cup medal, scoring in a 5–0 defeat of St Mirren in the final at Hampden.

Success for Smith and Rangers continued. The League title was again won in 1934–35 with Smith scoring 43 goals in 38 matches, including 6 in a 7–1 defeat of Dunfermline Athletic.[5] He also collected his second Scottish Cup medal, scoring twice in the 2–1 against Hamilton Academical in the final. Rangers went on to win two of the next four League championships before World War II and Smith was Rangers' top scorer in three of the four, including 31 goals from 38 games in the 1936–37 success.[5]

Smith continued to play for Rangers during the unofficial matches played during the War[5] but retired from football upon the return of official domestic football in 1946–47. After he retired he continued as a club trainer then chief scout until 1967.

International career

Despite his incredible goalscoring record, he only ever won two caps for Scotland, both against Ireland. He won his first cap on 20 October 1934 in a 2–1 defeat in Belfast and his second cap was on 10 November 1937, where Smith scored the equaliser in a 1–1 draw at Pittodrie.

See also


  1. http://www.londonhearts.com/SFL/players/jimmy2smith.html
  2. "Football mourns the loss of Rangers legend Jimmy Smith". The Herald. 6 December 2003.
  3. "Oldest Living Ranger Passes Away - Jimmy Smith Dies" Archived 19 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine followfollow.com (5 December 2003)
  4. [A Record of pre-war Scottish League Players], John Litster / Scottish Football Historian magazine, October 2012
  5. (Rangers player) Smith, Jimmy, FitbaStats