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Willie MacFadyen

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Willie MacFadyen
Personal information
Full name William MacFadyen
Date of birth (1904-06-23)23 June 1904
Place of birth Overtown, Scotland
Date of death 20 January 1971(1971-01-20) (aged 66)
Place of death Birmingham, England
Position(s) Centre forward
Youth career
19??––21 Wishaw YMCA
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1921–1936 Motherwell 378 (235)
1922Bo'ness (loan) 5 (0)
1923–1924Clyde (loan) 27 (7)
1936–1938 Huddersfield Town 48 (18)
Clapton Orient
Total 458 (260)
National team
1933 Scotland 2 (2)
1934 Scottish League XI 1 (2)
Teams managed
1945–1954 Dundee United
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

William MacFadyen (23 June 1904 – 20 January 1971) was a Scottish football player and manager. A goalscoring centre forward, his 52[1] league goals for Motherwell's 1931–32 championship winning side remains the record goals total for a single season in Scottish League history. He also topped the scoring charts again the following season, netting 45 times. In total, he scored 251 league goals for Motherwell – the eighth-best top flight total in Scottish League history.[2]

Playing career

Born in Overtown, Lanarkshire, MacFadyen played junior football for Wishaw YMCA before beginning his Motherwell career in 1921. Before establishing himself at Fir Park, he spent periods on loan with Bo'ness and Clyde.[3] As well as the 1932 league title, he gained two Scottish Cup runners-up medals while at Motherwell, in 1931 and 1933. He appeared for Scotland twice during 1933, against Wales and Austria. Despite scoring in both matches, he wasn't selected for international duty again, although he did also represent the Scottish League against the Irish League in 1934, scoring twice.[4]

After leaving Motherwell, he played for Huddersfield Town, for whom he appeared in the 1938 FA Cup Final, and Clapton Orient. In the 1939–40 season he appeared for Mossley making 16 appearances and scoring three goals.[5] During the Second World War, he served in the Royal Air Force and was a guest player for Blackpool, Huddersfield, Nottingham Forest and Rochdale.

Management and later life

In October 1945, MacFadyen was appointed as secretary-manager of Dundee United, a position he would hold for nine years. While he led the club to a memorable Scottish Cup giant killing against Celtic in 1949, he also oversaw United's record defeat when they lost 12–1 against the team where MacFadyen had been idolised as a player, Motherwell. He resigned from his post not long afterwards, in August 1954.

The Dundee United job was to be his last in football. After leaving the game, he worked as a physiotherapist and chiropodist. MacFadyen died in 1971.

His son Ian was also a footballer who played for Dundee United's reserve side while his father was manager, then moved to Motherwell around the time Willie also left the club, returning to Tannadice for one season in 1959.[6][7]




Huddersfield Town

See also


  1. ^ "ARFTS – William MacFadyen 1931–1932 Scottish First Division".
  2. ^ Scotland – All-Time Topscorers, RSSSF
  3. ^ Willie McFadyen, MotherWELLnet
  4. ^ SFL player Willie McFadyen, London Hearts Supporters Club
  5. ^ "Complete A-Z of Mossley Players". Mossley Web. Retrieved 25 November 2019.
  6. ^ Ian MacFadyen Player Profile, Arab Archive
  7. ^ Ian McFadyen, MotherWELLnet
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