Jimmy Bone

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Jimmy Bone
Personal information
Full name James Bone[1]
Date of birth (1949-09-22) 22 September 1949 (age 69)
Place of birth Bridge of Allan, Scotland
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Striker
Youth career
Fallin Boys Brigade
Airth Castle Rovers
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1968–1972 Partick Thistle 107 (50)
1972–1973 Norwich City 39 (9)
1973–1974 Sheffield United 31 (9)
1974–1975 Celtic 7 (1)
1975–1978 Arbroath 97 (41)
1978–1982 St Mirren 131 (27)
1979 Toronto Blizzard (loan) 25 (3)
1980 Toronto Blizzard (loan) 25 (4)
1982–1983 Hong Kong Rangers
1983–1985 Hearts 56 (11)
1985–1986 Arbroath 30 (2)
National team
1972–1973 Scotland under-23[2] 3 (1)
1972 Scotland 2
Teams managed
1985–1986 Arbroath
1989–1991 Airdrie
1991–1992 Power Dynamos
1992–1996 St Mirren
1996–1997 East Fife
2001–2002 Stenhousemuir
2007 Partick Thistle (caretaker)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

James Bone (born 22 September 1949) is a Scottish former professional footballer, who played as a striker. Following his playing retirement he moved into coaching and has managed a number of Scottish League clubs.

Playing career

Early career

Despite attending rugby union-playing Stirling High School,[3] Bone developed a keen interest in football, through representative games with his local boys brigade. He began his professional career with Partick Thistle, whom he joined from junior side Airth Castle Rovers in 1968 and spent four seasons with the Jags. During this time they suffered their first relegation from the First Division since season 1900-01, finishing bottom of the table in 1969–70.[4] However, the next season Bone was an integral part of the side that won the Second Division title and instant promotion back to the top flight. He earned another, unexpected, medal in 1971–72 when Partick won the Scottish League Cup by beating the overwhelming favourites Celtic.[3] Celtic were the reigning League champions and had been European Cup finalists only two years earlier but Bone's 37th-minute goal helped Partick to a 4–0 halftime lead, the Jags eventually winning 4–1.

Move to England

Bone moved south of the border in February 1972, joining Norwich City in a £30,000 deal.[3] Noted for his very fast runs down the wing, he helped Norwich secure the second division championship at the end of the 1971–72 season and scored the club's first ever goal in Division One at the start of the following campaign. He joined Sheffield United for £30,000 in March 1973.

Return to Scotland

Bone made further moves to Celtic (£25,000) and Arbroath (£12,000) in 1974 and 1975 respectively.[5] He stayed with the Red Lichties for three seasons but his consistent scoring was not enough to gain them promotion to the new Premier Division, following the league reconstruction of 1975–76.

In January 1978 Bone became one of Alex Ferguson's last signings as St Mirren manager, moving to the Paisley club for £25,000.[3] He was appointed captain by Ferguson's successor, Jim Clunie, and helped the side to victory in the Anglo-Scottish Cup and qualification for the UEFA Cup in the 1979–80 season. He moved to Hong Kong Rangers in 1981 and returned to Britain with Hearts in August 1983.

Bone was one of several veterans in the Hearts team and as a result the side was caustically dubbed Dad's Army.[6] However, the recently promoted side performed above expectations, finishing fifth in the League and qualifying for European competition. Bone scored several important goals, including the winner as Hearts defeated derby rivals Hibernian at Tynecastle for the first time in ten years.[5] The following year he notched the side's 6,000th League goal.[3] He left to take up the role of player-manager at Arbroath in February 1985.

Managerial career

Bone stayed with Arbroath for almost two years before moving to another former club St Mirren, as Alex Smith's assistant manager in December 1986. The side won the Scottish Cup for the first time in 28 years that season, while maintaining a safe position in the Premier Division. He left the Paisley side in April 1988 following a public dispute with striker Frank McGarvey. After a brief stint coaching with Dundee United he returned to management with First Division Airdrie, where he stayed until 1991. He spent a year in charge of Zambian side Power Dynamos FC before returning to St Mirren as manager. In four seasons he was unable to gain promotion with the Saints and eventually resigned in 1996. He spent one season as East Fife's manager before becoming assistant to Jocky Scott at Dundee.In 2000, he coached South African premier league side Wits University F.C. now called Bidvest Wits.

Bone was appointed Stenhousemuir's manager in 2001 but again his tenure lasted only one season.[7] He served as Alex Smith's assistant at Ross County between 2002 and 2004, before Dick Campbell made him his assistant at Partick Thistle in 2005. When Campbell was sacked in March 2007, Bone assumed the role of caretaker manager for the last two months of the season.[8] He left Partick after their appointment of Ian McCall as manager on 25 May 2007. The following December he moved south of the border to assist fellow Scotsman Bobby Williamson at Chester City but left the position just two months later after a poor run of form.[9]

Career statistics

International goals

# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 18 October 1972 Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark  Denmark 1–4 Win 1974 FIFA WC qual.
Correct as of 7 October 2015[10]



  1. ^ "Jimmy Bone". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  2. ^ "Jimmy Bone". www.fitbastats.com. Retrieved 8 September 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e Scottish Internationalists' Who's Who, P25
  4. ^ Partick had previously twice failed to gain re-election to the First Division having finished bottom, in the late 1890s and early 1900s, however this marked the first time they had suffered automatic relegation.
  5. ^ a b Hearts in Art, P26
  6. ^ Other veterans in the side were Sandy Jardine (aged 34), Alex MacDonald (35), Willie Johnston (36), Stewart Maclaren and Donald Park (both 30).
  7. ^ Warriors appoint Bone, BBC Sport, 28 September 2001.
  8. ^ Bone to stay in charge for season, BBC Sport, 28 September 2001.
  9. ^ "Day of Deva dialogue". Chester City Official Website. 13 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-13.
  10. ^ Football PLAYER: Jimmy Bone


  • Lamming, Douglas (1987). A Scottish Soccer Internationalists Who's Who, 1872–1986 (Hardback). Hutton Press. ( ISBN 0-907033-47-4).
  • Davage, Mark; Eastwood, John; Platt, Kevin (2001). Canary Citizens. Jarrold Publishing. ISBN 0-7117-2020-7.
  • Hogan, Andrew (1995). Hearts in Art (Hardback). Mainstream. ISBN 1-85158-736-5.

External links

  • Jimmy Bone's incomplete management career statistics at Soccerbase
  • Scotland appearances at londonhearts.com
  • Hearts appearances at londonhearts.com
  • Interview at Supporters Direct Scotland's Behind the Goals podcast
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