From Willie Lennie in 1908 to the present international representatives, Aberdeen
has supplied players to the Scotland cause on a regular basis. It has always
been difficult for players playing outwith the Old Firm to force their way into
the international set up as players from the two Glasgow teams and those plying
their trade in England tended to be given priority. By the mid 1980's however
it was difficult to overlook the contribution of Aberdeen on the European stage
and several players swapped the red of Aberdeen for the Dark Blue of Scotland
during this era.
Although Charlie O'Hagan was the first Dons player to be capped when
he represented Ireland in 1907, Lennie was the first Don to pull on the Dark
Blue of Scotland a year later. He celebrated that first cap in style by scoring
the winner in a 2-1 victory over Wales. The trickle of caps continued before
they dried up in 1913 following Donald Coleman's third Scotland match.
Finally in 1923 Jock Hutton?s performances for the Dons earned him a
call up. By the time he moved to Blackburn Rovers in 1927 Hutton had won seven
caps a record for the club that wasn?t to be broken for 44 years.
On the 5th May 1954 Scotland faced Norway at Hampden in a friendly and for
the first time Aberdeen had three players represented. Goalkeeper Fred Martin
and striker Paddy Buckley made their debut for their country while 36-year-old
George Hamilton was handed a shock recall to earn the fourth of his five caps.
Four years later in 1958 Graham Leggat equalled Hutton's cap total when
he played in the 1958 World Cup Finals in the 3-2 defeat against Paraguay.
He then missed out in Scotland?s final match against France in a match
that would have broken the record. By the time he played again for his country
he had been transferred to Fulham. The player to finally break Hutton?s
record was goalkeeper Bobby Clark. He earned his eighth cap in a friendly against
the USSR in 1971 before going on to earn a total of 16 caps in his career.
Argentina 1978 is not an occasion that many Scots tend to dwell on unless
recalling 'that' goal from Archie Gemmill, but it marked two more
World Cup appearances for Dons players as Stuart Kennedy lined up in the opener
against Peru while Joe Harper made his fourth and last appearance in the ill
fated Iran debacle. It's hard to believe now that a goal scorer of this
pedigree could only earn 4 caps. Within two years Aberdeen had won the Scottish
title and although the impact at International level was not immediate by 1983
the all-conquering Dons European exploits could not be ignored.
In December 1983 Scotland faced Northern Ireland in their last British Championship
match. Mark McGhee made a substitute appearance after 61 minutes in place of
Frank McGarvey marking a historic moment in the Dark Blue Dons story as he
took the field at Windsor Park to join five fellow Dons - Jim Leighton, Doug
Rougvie, Alex McLeish and Peter Weir. Unfortunately, from a Scottish point
of view the game didn't quite live up to the moment with Scotland losing 2-0
to an inspired Irish side. Of course Leighton went on to win 91 caps while
McLeish earned 77, all as an Aberdeen player, making him the most capped Dark
An obvious name missing from that 1983 Scotland team was Willie Miller. No
doubt he would have been playing that night but was out with an injury at the
time and missed out on this occasion on his way to his own 65-cap total. The
Dons have never again had six players in an International jersey at the same
time, but they continue to supply talent despite a recent slump in form. Russell
Anderson, Kevin McNaughton and Scott Severin have all represented their country
in recent years while the U21 level has also been well represented with Dons
in recent times.