The Scottish FA today remembers Andrew Watson, who passed away 100 years ago.
Andrew made history in 1881, becoming the first black player to play international association football – captaining us to a 6-1 win against England.
Capable of playing either side of the defence or in midfield, the Scotland international is regarded to this day as one of the most influential figures in football.
Born in Georgetown, Demerara to a solicitor and sugar plantation owner named Peter Miller Watson and a local woman called Hannah Rose, Andrew left for Britain at the age of six and first started playing football for Maxwell FC in Govan.
The club later merged with Parkgrove FC and Andrew was appointed as the club’s vice-president.
He made over 100 appearances for the club, even investing his own money which saw the team compete against the likes of Queen’s Park and Rangers.
Parkgrove collapsed as a club in 1880 which soon saw Watson sign for Queen’s Park, making over 110 appearances for the Glasgow club and winning three Scottish Cups and four Glasgow Charity Cups.
International recognition soon followed, and Watson’s three caps would have surely been more had he not moved back to England and, at that time, becoming ineligible to represent Scotland, as only home-based players could feature.
Down South, Watson would continue to have a remarkable effect on the game, becoming the first black player to play in the FA Cup and sharing his wealth of knowledge with amateurs whilst playing for the English-based Corinthian Football Club.
He returned to Queen’s Park for a spell before retiring in 1886, but football quickly lured him back in when he joined Bootle FC in Liverpool for two years, retiring for good in 1888.
Andrew died in Kew, Surrey on 8 March, 1921 leaving behind a lasting legacy.
Today, we remember him.