Kris Boyd is on course to hit an incredible scoring milestone on Sunday by becoming only the fifth player since the Second World War to score 200 top-flight league goals in Scotland. And should he achieve this remarkable feat against Aberdeen, he will truly be classed as one of the game’s greats, according to his former manager, Jim Jefferies, and Kilmarnock captain Stevie Smith
Boyd’s goal last Saturday at Dens Park took him to 199 Premier League and Premiership goals for Kilmarnock and Rangers. Only Ally McCoist (260), Willie Wallace (224), Joe McBride (217) and Jimmy Wardhaugh (211) have scored more at the top level. If he scores twice against Aberdeen, he will also become the first player to score 100 top-flight league goals for two clubs.
Boyd scored 101 top-flight goals for Rangers in 143 appearances – and 25 of them were as a substitute. Now he has hit 98 for Kilmarnock in 246 matches, including 70 sub appearances.
Jefferies, pictured below, said: “It doesn’t surprise me because he is still a predator. Bobby Williamson had introduced him to the first team, but he started to become more involved after I took over.
“Of course, like all young players, his form could dip but we felt, no matter how he was playing, he was always liable to get you a goal. We would sit there thinking ‘we need to take him off’ but then he would grab a goal out of nothing.
“He was also a great character, although he could be a little wild at times. But what a finisher and, when he gets the 200, there will be no-one happier than me.”
Jefferies also revealed that the sale of Boyd to Rangers for around £400,000 in January 2006 kept Kilmarnock afloat. He said: “I remember when Jamie Moffat left the club and Michael Johnson came in, we knew we had to sell Boyd to raise the necessary funds. Rangers were keen and we ended up getting a bit more money than we thought, and that was key to the business plan, so he didn’t just help us on the park. The sale of Kris effectively helped us to survive. He was fantastic for me and Billy Brown and, of course, that’s why he got the move.
“His record is phenomenal, really, and I knew when he went to Rangers in 2006 that he would score a bundle for them. It’s quite simple. If you create enough chances for Boydie, he will score regularly.”
Kilmarnock captain Smith believes Boyd also deserves to be classed as one of the true greats when he shoots through the 200 barrier.
Smith knows that his style has divided opinion but insists you can’t argue with his record.
Smith, who also played with the striker at Rangers and Portland Timbers, said: “I don’t think there is any doubt that he should he held in the highest esteem. He will become a legend when he gets the 200th goal, but I reckon he is one already. The amount of times that he has scored crucial goals and match-winners is frightening. I hope he does it on Sunday – live on TV. It’s the right setting for a man of his talents.”
Jefferies feels there is time for Boyd to rise further up the scoring charts, even if McCoist’s leading total is probably too much to ask.
Jefferies added: “The thing is he is only 33, so, if Lee Clark still thinks he can do a job, he could be banging in the goals for another couple of seasons at least. Ally McCoist’s record might be beyond him, but he must have a decent chance of finishing his career as No 2.
“When I used to go and watch Hearts as a youngster, Willie Wallace was the man. He was a great player for Hearts and he went on to be a great player for Celtic. Jimmy Wardhaugh had been the main man in the 1950s and Willie took that mantle. I ended up playing against Willie when he was at Dumbarton at the tail-end of his career and I was just starting mine. He was another great finisher but he could play different positions as well.”