Harthill, Lanarkshire born centre half Jock Espie began his football career with Glasgow Rangers in 1887, playing for Motherwell in 1888, Queen’s Park in 1889 and Burnbank Swifts in 1891 and became a Scottish Junior international before heading south to join Football League club Burnley, making his League debut at West Bromwich Albion on Boxing Day 1891. Described as “very fast and a determined opponent”, he had five seasons at Turf Moor, being an ever present in 1893-94 and becoming club captain, scoring 6 times in the campaign as Burnley finished fifth in the League Championship.
Espie scored 11 goals in 96 appearances for The Clarets before a transfer to Manchester City in March 1896. However he played only once for The Citizens in a 1-1 draw with Burton Swifts soon after signing, and soon returned to Scotland to join Dundee. He finished his (known) career by joining Southern League club Chatham in 1897.