Hibernian great Eddie Turnbull dies

Eddie Turnbull, pictured at Easter Road in 2004

Turnbull won three league titles with Hibernian as a player

Former Hibernian player and manager Eddie Turnbull has passed away at the age of 88.

During the late 1940s and 1950s, he played in the Famous Five forward line along with Gordon Smith, Willie Ormond, Bobby Johnstone and Lawrie Reilly.

In that time, he won three league titles and became the first British player to score in a European club competition.

Having won the Scottish Cup with Aberdeen, he became Hibs boss in 1971 and won the League Cup a year later.

Turnbull was in charge for Hibs' famous 7-0 win over Edinburgh rivals Hearts at Tynecastle in 1973 and remained in the Easter Road dugout until 1980.

The stylish early-70s team were known as Turnbull's Tornadoes and included the likes of John Brownlie, Pat Stanton and Alex Cropley.

Were it not for Jock Stein's all-conquering Celtic side, the Hibs trophy cabinet would surely have been busier - they were league runners-up in 1974 and '75.

Turnbull, who was famed for a shot almost as fierce as his temper, made nine appearances for Scotland and played at the 1958 World Cup.

The older coaches in Scotland, such as myself, Walter Smith, Archie Knox and Gordon Strachan, will all say how wonderful it was to be coached by him

Craig Brown Aberdeen manager

He spent 13 years in the green and white of Hibs after joining the club in 1946 and once scored all the goals in a 4-1 win over Celtic.

Turnbull became the first British player to score in Europe when Hibs were invited to play in the inaugural European Cup in the 1955-56 season, the goal coming in a 4-0 away win at Rot-Weiss Essen.

"He was an outstanding Hibernian man," present manager Colin Calderwood told BBC Radio Scotland after Saturday's 2-1 home defeat to St Johnstone.

"I met him at our last home game and had a chat with him.

"You would love to be able to pick his brains because of his outstanding knowledge of the game.

"To be remembered as he was as a player and a manager and to have the history with the club he had, it's a tremendous thing to have."

Hearts manager Jim Jefferies, who was on the wrong end of that 7-0 result as a player, held Turnbull in high regard.

"He was a great manager," he told BBC Radio Scotland.

"He was from the old school and he was a hard manager, but he got players to play for him."

Turnbull spent five years in charge at Aberdeen and his innovative coaching methods transformed the club, with the Dons ending a quarter of a century trophy drought with the 1970 Scottish Cup and finishing second in the league in the following season.

Current Pittodrie manager Craig Brown worked with Turnbull when he was starting out on his coaching career.

"I met Eddie at Largs, where he was the doyen of coaches at the time and hugely respected by everyone," said the former Scotland boss.

"I think everyone who attended those courses used to hang on his every word.

"He was so knowledgeable and, although he was a hard man, he was very willing to give up his expertise and time.

"The older coaches in Scotland, such as myself, Walter Smith, Archie Knox and Gordon Strachan, will all say how wonderful it was to be coached by him.

"I can't praise him highly enough as a coach and a manager. It's a very sad passing for his family and Scottish football."

Hibernian chairman Rod Petrie also paid tribute to Turnbull's memory.

"As a player, trainer, coach and manager there is no-one who has made a greater contribution to the club over many years," he said.

"The club wish to acknowledge more formally his contribution at the appropriate time after consultation with his family."