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William 'Willie' Esplin Ormond OBE (23 February 1927 – 4 May 1984) was a Scottishmarker football player and manager. As a player, Ormond was well known as one of Hibernian's Famous Five forward line, winning three league championships in the late 1940s and early 1950s. He then returned to prominence as a manager, first with a successful spell at St. Johnstone, and then taking Scotland to the 1974 World Cup. Scotland were unbeaten at that World Cup, but were eliminated on goal difference.

Playing career

Born in Falkirkmarker, Ormond signed for Hibernian in November 1946 from Stenhousemuir. An outside-left, he played for Hibs over a fifteen year period. He was one of the "Famous Five", the Hibs forward line during the 1950s, one of the strongest front fives ever in Scottish football . (The others were Bobby Johnstone, Lawrie Reilly, Gordon Smith and Eddie Turnbull). They all scored over 100 goals for the club, he scored a total 193. During his playing career, he won the Scottish League Championship three times with Hibernian and won six Scotland caps. He was the last member of the Five to leave Hibs, signing for hometown Falkirk in 1961.

Managerial career

After he retired from playing, Ormond became assistant trainer at Falkirk. In 1967, he was appointed as manager of St. Johnstone. He led the club to the 1969 League Cup final and third in the League one year, ahead of Rangers, taking them into Europe for the first time, a serious achievement for a Scottish club outside the major cities.

When the Scottish Football Association wanted someone capable of bringing stability to the job of Scotland manager after Tommy Docherty left, Ormond was a natural choice and he was appointed in 1973. He was blessed with a talented squad and steered them to the 1974 World Cup Finals in West Germanymarker. Although Scotland didn't lose any of their games and came back as the only unbeaten team in the tournament, they were eliminated after the first round. This was actually the best ever performance by a Scotland team in a World Cup.

Later, minor breaches of player discipline accumulated and after four years the SFA came to believe it wanted a more forceful and charismatic figure as manager. In May 1977 he resigned and was appointed as manager of Hearts - the arch rivals of his old team, Hibs. Many Hearts fans at the time were less than happy given Ormond's background but he soon won them over before being sacked in 1980, whereupon he moved to Hibernian as assistant to his old Famous Five colleague Eddie Turnbull. When Turnbull resigned, Ormond took over but his health was not good and forced him to retire soon after.

Trivia

  • The South Stand at McDiarmid Parkmarker, St. Johnstone's ground since 1989, is named in his honour.
  • His brother Gibby also played League football, for semi-professional Cowdenbeath in the mid 1960s.
  • Another brother, Bert Ormond, emigrated and represented New Zealand at international level in 1962.


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