St Rollox, Glasgow born centre forward Robert Smyth McColl started his career with junior club Benmore in 1892 and first entered senior football at amateur club Queens Park in January 1894, making his debut for The Spiders in April 1894 in a Merchant’s Charity Cup semi final win over Rangers and went on to score 112 goals in 180 games for Queen’s Park in all competitions across his two spells with the club. While at Queen’s Park he was a Scottish Cup Finalist in 1900 when they lost 4-3 to Celtic.
McColl made his Scotland international debut in March 1896 when he played in a victory over Wales at Carolina Port. Although he didn’t score he went on to score 13 goals in 13 Scotland appearances. All but one of his caps were won during his time with Queen’s Park and he also won one at Newcastle against England in May 1902, but he won his 13th and final cap in March 1908 after a 6 year gap, playing against Ireland at Dalymount Park. He also represented the Scottish League against The Football League at Ibrox in March 1901, scoring in a 6-2 victory.
He signed for First Division Newcastle United at the start of November 1901, making his Football League debut against Manchester City a few days later, scoring a penalty in a 3-0 victory. McColl remained in Newcastle for 3 years scoring 20 goals in 67 appearances, and returned to play for Rangers in September 1904, making his debut against none other than Queen’s Park that September. While at Rangers he was a Scottish Cup Finalist in 1905 when they lost 3-1 to Partick Thistle. He scored 22 goals in 44 appearances for Rangers but returned to Queen’s Park in August 1907, although the ‘return’ of his amateur status had to be decided by the board of the club beforehand. He re-commenced his Spiders career by scoring in a 3-1 League victory over former club Rangers. McColl finished his football career in April 1912, scoring 6 goals in his penultimate game against Port Glasgow Athletic, a Scottish scoring record which stands to the present day. He was inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame in November 2011.
McColl is now better known for lending his name to the newsagent chain RS McColl, which he set up in 1901 with his brother Tom. Due to this he became known as ‘Toffee Bob’.