Scotland’s ‘Wembley Wizards’ manager Bobby Brown has died, aged 96.
Mr Brown was a goalkeeper and famously played for Rangers – succeeding another local goalkeeper Jerry Dawson – before switching to Falkirk, close to his birthplace of Dunipace, in 1956.
After retiring at Brockville he moved into management first with St Johnstone and then, perhaps his finest feat – he masterminded the first defeat of World Cup winners England, at Wembley in 1967.
It was his first game as international manager and the first for the country with a full-time national boss.
The 3-2 victory earned the side the nickname the ‘Wembley Wizards’ and entered Scottish football’s history books and folklore.
He was admitted to the Scottish football hall of fame in 2015, and was an early inductee to Rangers’ pantheon of greats in 2002.
Rangers FC paid tribute saying: “Everyone at Rangers FC is in mourning today after learning that club legend and former Scotland goalkeeper and manager Bobby Brown has sadly passed away at the age of 96.
“Tall, blond and agile, Mr Brown was the last line in a famous Rangers defence which became known as the Iron Curtain and also featured George Young, Jock Shaw, Ian McColl, Willie Woodburn and Sammy Cox.”
Chairman Dave King added: “All of us connected with Rangers are deeply saddened to hear that Mr Brown, a genuine Rangers and Scotland legend, has passed away. Our thoughts are with Mr. Brown’s family at this time.
“He was a wonderful servant of our club and we will remember him with great fondness. He was a gentleman of the game and set standards which typify what Rangers is about.”
St Johnstone said: “The Club is deeply saddened to hear that former manager Bobby Brown has passed away today aged 96. Bobby was Saints manager between June 1958 and February 1967.
“The thoughts of everybody at St. Johnstone FC are with Bobby’s family and friends at this sad time.”
Sports journalist David McCarthy, formerly of The Falkirk Herald, tweeted: “Bobby Brown was a remarkable man and an absolute joy to speak with. My thoughts are with Mr Brown’s family tonight.”
Former Celtic manager Davie Hay added: “He was a gentleman of the highest order.”
Mr Brown was also included in the top ten of the Falkirk Herald Sport FH100 – our 2012 rundown of the greatest sporting stars with ties to the district.