The Stomp
In memory of Sam Goodwin
By Chris Mac
March 12 2005

Firstly I would like to personally thank Airdrie and Falkirk fans for honouring the minutes silence to commemorate the passing of Sam Goodwin. The following is a tribute written by Jim Milton

Sam Goodwin

 

 

            Airdrie fans, particularly those of a late sixties Ė early seventies vintage, would have been extremely saddened this week to learn of the death of Airdrieonians legend Sam Goodwin.

 

            Sam arrived at Broomfield during season 1964-65 from Ayrshire junior outfit Craigmark Burntonian. Unfortunately, the Diamonds suffered relegation to the second division at the end of that term although Sam quickly established himself as one of the mainstays in an exciting side that would bounce straight back up to Division 1 which of course was the top league in those days.

 

            Among his team mates in that promotion winning team were great names like Roddy McKenzie, Paul Jonquin, Jackie Ferguson, Davie Marshall, Tommy Murray and, of course, the outstanding Ian McMillan who had just returned for a second spell at Broomfield after great success with Rangers.

 

            It was the subsequent arrival of two other young hopefuls that really saw Sam mature as a distinguished and well respected right half however. Along with Jim Black and future captain Derek Whiteford, Sam steadily forged a half-bacl line partnership that today is celebrated as one of the most famous and revered in the clubís history.

 

            Of course to younger fans terminology like centre half and outside left may not mean a lot. Samís role within the team then would equate in modern terms to someone equally adept in both defensive and attacking play Ė pivotal in breaking down opposition threat and turning it into counter offence. Perhaps a Frank Lampard or, closer to home, someone like Neil McFarlane.

 

            Indeed for the next six years or so, Sam continued to nurture that rare combination of creative artisan and unflinching stalwart to emerge as one of the most influential figures of his or any other era. In possession of a thunderbolt shot he also provided many memorable goals from long range.

 

            Of course the onset of the 1970ís brought a rich seam of success to the club with a league championship, a Scottish Cup final and victory in the Spring Cup all coming within the space of three seasons. Sam would experience none of this however, although he did appear in the epic 70-71 Scottish Cup semi final with Celtic before managing a number of sterling performances in the ground-breaking Texaco Cup. It is very probable in fact that it was his excellent form against top English opposition that alerted Crystal Palace, then as now a top division side, to his worth and for a fee of around £40,000 he was on his way to Selhurst Park just days after he had helped the Diamonds humble Manchester City at Broomfield in September 1971.

 

            In travelling south he also became one a rare collection of post-babyboom Diamonds to continue their football in England Ė Archie Irvine at Sheffield Wednesday, Tommy Murray at Carlisle United and Sandy Clark at West Ham being the most significant examples of the era.

 

            Samís stay in London lasted three seasons, during which he seemed something of a regular on Match of the Day on a Saturday night, until he found his way back to Scotland where he served Motherwell and Clydebank before going into management, and later directorship, with Albion Rovers.

 

            Sam was always a fans favourite and many of them were reacquainted with him in 2002 at the inaugural Hall of Fame dinner which he attended as one of fifty induction nominees, sharing a table with old buddy Jim Black.

 

            Sammy Goodwin, a true Diamonds legend.

 

            Appearances:   271 (+2 sub)

            Goals:  25