Bowhill, Fife born inside forward Alex Herd began his football career at Hearts of Beath in 1929, joining Hamilton Academicals in the Scottish League in 1930. In January 1933 he transferred to the English team Manchester City. His Football League debut for City came in a 1-0 defeat at Blackpool in early February 1033. When Herd signed for Manchester City, the team included England Internationals Eric Brook, Sam Cowan, Jackie Bray, Frank Swift and Fred Tilson and former Scotland captain Jimmy McMullan.
Herd scored his first goal for City in a 2-1 victory against Derby County in his second game. In his first season for the City Herd scored 7 goals in 20 appearances. He was also part of the City team which was defeated 3-0 by Everton in the 1933 FA Cup Final. In his second season at the club, the 1933-34 season, Herd was City’s top scorer with 21 goals. Described as “a remarkable shot and reckoned to be one of football’s greatest long range goal scorers”, he was also part of the City team which beat Portsmouth 2-1 in the 1934 FA Cup Final with two goals from Fred Tilson.
In 1936-37 Herd was part of the first Manchester City side to win the League Championship. The team went on an unbeaten run after Christmas, winning 14 times and drawing 6 games. The Championship was won at Maine Road with a 4-1 victory over Sheffield Wednesday. Herd was City’s third highest scorer that season with 15 goals behind Peter Doherty who scored 30 goals and Eric Brook who scored 20. However in 1937-38 Herd was part of the City team that were relegated from the First Division despite scoring more goals than any other team. Herd was again City’s third highest scorer that season with 16 goals. In the 1938-39 season he was City’s top scorer with 20 goals. The team finished fifth in Division Two that season, six points behind winners Blackburn Rovers. The Second World War then interrupted Herd’s football career however he played for Scotland in one (unofficial) wartime international match, a 5-4 win against England at Hampden Park in April 1942.
He continued playing after the War and scored 11 goals for City in the 1946-47 season. In March 1948 he joined Stockport County after 125 goals in 291 appearances for City. He scored 41 goals in 119 appearances for County playing his last game on Christmas Day 1951 against Crewe Alexandra. Later the same season he became the manager of Stockport County from April 1952, staying until October 1952.
He was the younger brother of Hearts’ Sandy Herd, and the father of Arsenal’s David Herd, both of whom were Scottish internationals.