David Potter’s Celtic Player of the Day, No.42 – James McLaren

Commonly knows as “The Ould General”, James McLaren was in more or less at the very start for Celtic, moving west from Hibs when Celtic were founded. He had played for Hibs and had played with distinction for them in the Scottish Cup final victory of 1887.

He was one of those players in the early days who could play anywhere (positions were less clearly delineated then than now) from goalkeeper to goal scorer but it was in the midfield that he established himself.

He was always a great favourite at Celtic Park and became a favourite with all Scotland in 1889 when he scored the winning goal against England at the Oval, and in 1890 he played as captain for Scotland.

He left Celtic in 1891 to play for Morton and Clyde, and also with Ginnett’s Circus who toured the country playing Exhibition games of football, including once, it was claimed, in front of Queen Victoria.

After he retired he worked with Glasgow Corporation for a while, but then emigrated to Canada, returned to Scotland with the Canadian Foresters in World War One (in an administrative capacity for he would have been too old to fight) and was seen at Celtic Park in early 1918 for Sunny Jim’s benefit match.

He died in Canada in 1927.

David Potter

Click on the image above to shop


The Celtic Star’s Father’s Day Promotion has been so successful, with hundreds of books at great prices being posted to Celtic fans all over the world, that we’ve decided to continue with the sale until the end of July. We’ve reduced all six books currently available from their usual retail price of £20 and prices are as low as £6 (see below).

All books are high quality hardback, with some signed by the author. And it’s also worth noting that you only pay postage on one book, so it’s free for the second, third and so on. ORDER HERE or click on The Celtic Star image above…this is how it feels to be Celtic!

About Author

I am Celtic author and historian and write for The Celtic Star. I live in Kirkcaldy and have followed Celtic all my life, having seen them first at Dundee in March 1958. I am a retired teacher and my other interests are cricket, drama and the poetry of Robert Burns.

Comments are closed.