Tributes to former Rangers and Blackburn footballer Ally Dawson

Tributes have been paid to former Rangers captain and Hamilton Academical manager Ally Dawson, who has died aged 63.

Ally Dawson has died aged 63. (Picture: SNS)

Dawson, who also had a lengthy spell in charge of Scotland’s Homeless World Cup squad and worked in Rangers’ youth academy was involved in Scottish league wins both on the field and off it during a lengthy association with the game.

Signed by Jock Wallace straight from Johnstone High school in 1975, Dawson made 315 appearances for Rangers over 12 years before being sold to Blackburn Rovers for £25,000.

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The defender, was also capped five times for Scotland and lifted the League Cup and Scottish Cup as Rangers captain as well as being involved in league winning squads during his early days.

Hamilton manager Ally Dawson won the league with Accies in 2001. (picture: SNS)

He later wound down his career with short spells in Ireland, at Airdrie and then Malta where he moved into management with Premier League side St Andrews.

He returned to the dugout in Scotland with Hamilton during a particularly difficult spell for the Lanarkshire side but won the Third Division in 2001 – a promotion which set the club on the path back to the Premier League as they relocated to New Douglas Park after seven years on the road ground-sharing with Albion Rovers and Partick Thistle.

His three-year spell came to an end in 2002 when he was replaced by Chris Hillcoat. He later became involved with the Homeless World Cup project and was Scotland’s head-coach.

A tribute on the Rangers website to the Ibrox Hall of Fame inductee who “worked extensively with the Rangers’ Academy and Soccer Academies” read: “Ally joined Rangers straight from school at the age of 16 and made his debut in September 1975 in a Glasgow Cup tie with Queens’ Park.

Dawson went on to captain Rangers after signing straight from school in Renfrewshire. (Picture: SNS)

“A defender by trade, he made 315 appearances across 12 seasons, playing under Jock Wallace twice, John Greig and latterly Graeme Souness, before departing for Blackburn Rovers in 1987.

“Dawson was also captain of the club, lifting both a League Cup and Scottish Cup as part of six honours overall, and he was inducted into the Rangers Hall of Fame in 2011.

“The thoughts of the directors, staff and players of Rangers are today with the family and friends of Ally.”

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