King Jimmy Image 1 Hamilton Academical 1938

King Jimmy Image 1 Hamilton Academical 1938


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Born in Craigneuk, near Wishaw, Lanarkshire winger Jimmy King could play equally well on either of the two outside forward positions. He played junior football with Carfin Harp and while King was with them in 1928 they won every competition in which the club participated except the Scottish Juvenile Cup. He also played for Carluke Rovers and prior to his signature being obtained by Hamilton Academical manager Willie McAndrew in 1929 he was chosen to play for the Lanarkshire Junior League versus the Forfar District League. Originally a provisional signing for Hamilton he completed full signing forms on the 3rd June 1929, making his Scottish League debut against Hibernian in January 1930.

He was chosen to represent the Scottish Alliance League to meet a Scottish Junior Select at Firhill on 18th April 1931. Originally operating on the left, the advantage of his two footedness was put to use to accommodate Bobby Reid on the left side with King crossing over to the right side.

He won two full Scotland international caps, both against Ireland, in September 1932, and in the same match in September 1933. His first match at Windsor Park, Belfast, saw him score in a 4-0 victory but a year later Scotland lost 2-1 at Parkhead. He also earned a Scottish League representative cap against The Irish League in a 4-1 win at Ibrox in October 1932.

He played for Hamilton against Glasgow Rangers in the 1935 Scottish Cup Final at Hampden Park, but Rangers prevailed by 2 goals to 1. Improved terms were offered to him, £4 per week, an increase of £1. By 1937 Bobby Reid was on the left wing and King had moved to the right and that was his role when a record crowd of 28,690 turned up at Douglas Park on a Wednesday afternoon on 3rd March 1937 to witness a Scottish Cup tie with Heart of Midlothian.

Known to the Accies faithful as King James, King was a tremendous servant to Hamilton, an able marksman as well, with  95 goals in his 289 appearances for Accies, and he remained with them until 1939 when Jimmy McStay took him to Alloa Athletic to assist in their efforts to stay in the First Division, playing only five games for Alloa before The Second World War broke out and peacetime football was abandoned in September 1939.

One of his sons, Johnny, played for Hamilton during the 1960’s at centre forward. Another, Eddie, was signed by Hibernian while an inside left with Wishaw Juniors, while Jimmy Jr. turned out as junior with Douglasdale Juniors, Bellshill Athletic and Royal Albert.


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