Falkirk, Stirlingshire born left back Bob Thomson began his football career with Lauriston Villa and played for Falkirk Amateurs in 1924 before signing for hometown Scottish League club Falkirk in 1925, and such was his form for The Bairns that he was selected for The Scottish League in a 2-2 draw against The Football League at Filbert Street in March 1927, and then for his full international debut against England in a 2-1 defeat at Hampden Park in front of 111,000 spectators on 2nd April 1927.
He was signed by First Division club Sunderland for £5,000 in April 1927, making his Football League debut at West Ham United the same September. He established himself in the Sunderland first eleven from January 1928 but lost his place at the start of the following season, and having played 22 matches for The Wearsiders he was sold to local rivals Newcastle United in exchange for Robert McKay in October 1928, immediately establishing himself as Newcastle’s first choice left back.
Thomson had five seasons at St James’ Park making 80 appearances for The Magpies, but having lost his place in December 1930 he was increasingly a fringe player and didn’t play as they won the 1932 FA Cup Final, before a transfer to Hull City for £340 in July 1934, where he only appeared 4 times during the early stages of the 1934-35 season, before, as many professionals did during the 1930’s, heading to the French League where he joined Olympique Marseille late in the year. He subsequently joined Racing Club de Paris in 1935 before returning to England in 1936 to play for non league Ipswich Town.
After retiring as a player due to a broken leg in 1937, Thomson worked for Ipswich Town as assistant trainer and head trainer under Scott Duncan before the Second World War, and he served in The Royal Air Force during the War. He was also the manager of Dutch side Ajax from November 1950, when he succeeded Jack Reynolds, until his sacking on 4th December 1952.