Smith Jimmy Image 1 Ayr United 1927

Smith Jimmy Image 1 Ayr United 1927


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Old Kilpatrick, Dunbartonshire born centre forward James Terence “Jimmy” Smith is a legendary goalscorer in Ayr United‘s history as he made the Guinness Book of Records for holding the British seasonal record of 72 goals, four in friendlies, two in the Scottish Cup and a phenomenal 66 in 38 matches as Ayr won the Scottish Second Division Championship in the 1927-28 season. He had began his career with Dumbarton Harp in 1919 before spells at Clydebank in 1925 and Rangers in 1926, where he played twice for the first team at the start of the 1926-27 season, brought him to Somerset Park. His British record haul included 6 hat-tricks. After a further season at Ayr he was transferred to Liverpool on 17th September 1929 for a fee of around £5,500.

Smith was introduced into the Liverpool side for the sixth First Division fixture of the 1929-30 season, scoring twice on his Football League debut against Manchester United at Old Trafford in a 2-1 victory four days later and he played in 38 consecutive League and Cup games before the season ended, scoring 23 times. Smith grabbed another 14 League goals a year later but lost his place halfway through the season, being replaced by Dave Wright. Wright continued to be selected ahead of Smith when the 1931-32 season opened and Smith was restricted to just three more appearances for the club. His final game was in a defeat at Sheffield United on the last day of October 1931, the last of his 62 appearances for Liverpool, in which he had scored an impressive total of 38 goals.

Smith‘s career took a decidedly downward turn after Liverpool. He played one season of non league football for Tunbridge Wells Rangers in the Eastern Section of the Southern League before joining Third Division (South) Bristol Rovers in May 1933 where he struggled to hold a regular place. Smith scored 17 goals in 31 games for Rovers before joining Newport County in the close season of 1935, scoring 10 goals in 27 appearances the next season. He had a brief spell at Notts County joining them in the summer of 1936, scoring once in 4 appearances before returning to his homeland to join Dumbarton in 1937. He had a much happier time once back in the Scottish Second Division and scored 36 goals in 49 League games. He took over as Dumbarton‘s manager in January 1939. He was appointed as director in 1941 as the club could no longer afford a manager and stayed in that capacity until 1943.

NB in the photograph Smith appears with Liverpool team mates Tom “Tiny” Bradshaw, Gordon Hodgson and James “Parson” Jackson.


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