Kennedy Sam Image 1 Partick Thistle 1905

Kennedy Sam Image 1 Partick Thistle 1905


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Girvan, Ayrshire born centre forward Sam Kennedy started with junior club Girvan and played for Ayr United, where he was considered the best centre forward in the Scottish Second Division, before joining Partick Thistle in 1902. Tall and straight-backed, with a handlebar moustache, Sam Kennedy looked every inch the late Victorian/early Edwardian gentleman but he was a physical style of front man, known for his “battering ram bursts” through opposition defences. He scored on his debut in a 2-1 Scottish League win over Kilmarnock and scored 14 goals in his debut season as Thistle finished the season in their highest ever League position of 8th. Thistle’s League position continued to steadily improve in successive seasons, rising to a 5th place finish in 1904-05. It was then that Kennedy was called into the Scotland team, making a single appearance for Scotland in a 3-1 defeat to Wales at Wrexham in March 1905.

The Daily Record said of him: “Kennedy is a clever, able, player, but really he tries too much. A little less dribbling and trying to beat the defence single handed would result in greater efficiency all round, and more goals to the club.”

In October 1910 after 95 goals in 254 appearances Kennedy returned to Girvan after 8 years as Thistle’s main front man, known for his partnership with Robert Gray who provided many of the passes for Kennedy’s goals.

NB the photograph was taken before a game with Celtic on 4th November 1905.


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