The club are today saddened to learn of the death of former striker Joe McBride, who passed away late last night after a short battle with illness.
Joe had already had a bit of a nomadic career before joining the Steelmen in 1962 for just £8,000; a CV boasting the likes of Kilmarnock, Wolves, Luton Town and Partick Thistle despite being just 24 years of age.
But it was in the Claret and Amber of Motherwell that his goalscoring exploits really came to the fore.
He made his debut in a goalless draw with Dundee United in November and netted his first goal in a 4-3 defeat at Dunfermline.
In his first season at Fir Park, he had scored eleven goals, the very next he hit the back of the net nineteen times.
He was a deadly finisher who was forged a reputation as one Britain’s most talented strikers. He famously helped the club land the 1965 Summer Cup by scoring against every side the club met.
That prompted legendary boss Jock Stein to prize him away to Celtic Park in 1965; Joe’s Motherwell stats read an incredible 51 goals in just 88 league appearances. His departure was noted by the board of the time as ‘sad as it was inevitable’ – a testament to his supreme quality.
He went on to have a glittering spell at Parkhead, cementing himself in the folklore of the Glasgow club after playing a part in the European Cup success in 1967, although injury ruled him out of the final itself, and a fearsome goal scoring rate.
He also latterly played for Hibernian, Dunfermline and Clyde before retiring in 1972.
Chief Executive Leeann Dempster said, “We were saddened to hear of Joe’s death early this morning.
“Although Joe will probably be remembered by most in the Scotland football world for his time with Celtic, Motherwell fans who had the pleasure of seeing him blossom will always hold him in high regard.
“We take a great sense of pride in his achievements whilst he was at Fir Park and how players of his quality graced our club in what was a golden era in terms of quality of football and the Summer Cup in 1965.”
Everyone at Motherwell Football Club would like express our deepest condolences to Joe’s family and friends at this sad time.