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John McClelland

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Position Centre back
Born 07 Dec 1955, Belfast (Northern Ireland)
Height 190 cm
Weight 85 kg
International Caps Northern Ireland: 53 full

Club From To Apps Goals Sold for
Cardiff City 01 Feb 1974 01 Jun 1975 4 1  
Mansfield Town 31 May 1978 01 Jun 1981 125 8  
Glasgow Rangers 01 Jun 1981 01 Nov 1984 96 4 £225000
Watford 01 Nov 1984 01 Jun 1989 184 3 £100000
Leeds United 01 Jun 1989 01 Oct 1996 29 0 £0
Watford 01 Jan 1990   1 0 on loan
Notts County 01 Mar 1992   6 0 on loan
Darlington 01 Oct 1996 01 Jun 1997 1 0  

Leeds Career League FA Cup League Cup Europe Other
Season Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
1989 - 1990 3  0  0  0  0 
1990 - 1991 3  2  0  0  0 
1991 - 1992 16(2)  0  2(1)  0  0 
Total 22(2)  2  2(1)  0  0 

Jabba's Comments

John McClelland's league career got off to a shaky start: signed by Cardiff from Portadown for £8,000, he only played four games before being released. After a spell with Bangor City he came back over for a spell with Mansfield and established himself with three solid seasons in the centre of their defence. Three successful years north of the border was followed up by a 5 year stint at Vicarage Road.

Another one of Wilko's signings in the summer of 1989, John Mclelland provided rock solid cover at the centre of Leeds' defence for 3 seasons. Previously dogged by persistent leg problems, he found that a slightly different type of boot cured his problems halfway through his stint at Leeds and his play improved considerably and his experience and leadership at the heart of the defence made a vital contribution to the excellent start that Leeds had in the Championship season of 1991-92. He returned to Elland Road since he ended his playing career and is now the regular guide for parties touring the ground.

John Russell says: Hi John, your favourite nephew here (Only One I Think). If you read this get in touch. If anyone at Leeds United reads this, please pass on this message. Look forward to hearing from you soon.

John McClelland says: Hey man John McClelland is my cousin and he is an awesome soccer player so tell John I said hi because I haven't seen him in years. Just tell him John Michael McClelland said what's up.

Bill Merry says: Went on the Elland Rd tour on sunday the 16-06-02 he was very helpful and an excellent guide. John thanks for a great time

Tajinder Singh says: Hi, i went on the elland road tour with my school (matthew Murray). The tour was exellent, I learned alot of things n didnt know. Thanks John!!!

Susanne Hallworth says: I saw John play many times for Northern Ireland at Windsor Park and met him quite a few times after the matches. I used to really fancy him and often wonder how he's getting along now.

Stu Wilkie says: I saw John play at Cardiff a couple of times for the senior team and a few times for the youth team. I was also there when he scored his only goal. A scorcher if memory serves me. He should have had another not long after in the same match but was unlucky. Genuinely nice guy and a great footballer. PS he used to go out with my sister in those days. Cheers for the free match tickets John

Colin Y says: John, was an excellent servant during his time at Ibrox, 100% every week and the perfect example to the younger players who would then go on to become the back bone of the revolution. True proffesional, he once gave me his club lapel badge when arriving to play Hearts, (we won 3-0, Sandy Clarke hat-trick). If you read this, "Aw ra best yer man"

noel,simon,booby barb says: me and my 2 mates went to elland road on an off chance of getting a look at the ground.after sneaking in john caught us,but allowed us to have a tour hes a top guy and deserves a payrise and more recognition! bear in mind we travelled from btn, he made our day!!!! what a guy.

Paul says: Big John was a great central defender for Rnagers. He was famed for never getting booked, far less sent off. One time, he was playing at Ibrox (against Motherwell, I think), and was late in a tackle. The ref came over, with yellow card raised, and big John said "You're quite right,ref, I deserve to be booked". What a guy. If you readt this big chap, aw ra best!

Nicky Rees says: I had the crush of all crushes on John when I was a teenager and he was always so lovely and sweet to me. Apart from being the most fantastic footballer - he was one of a kind. I would sooo love to hear from him and see what he is up to now.

Olga says: I'm from Ukraine, and I'm a fan of Metalurg, the team that played at Elland Road in Sept 2002 in the UEFA Cup. Later, in 2003 I had the chance to visit the Elland Road and John was our guide. I was happy to meet a (former) Leeds player even though I had not seen him play for Leeds. I'm sure he was an excellent player and I have the best impressions of him as a personality. Great impressions of a tour and of John! Thank you John!

Steve Cooke says: is Belfast in the glasgow Rangers part of Scotland

Steve Cooke . Leeds United Scottish Supporters Club says: I have personally emailed John and pointed him to this webpage, my personal experiences with John are nothing but good... I remember him at Tannedice against the Arabs ! and even went along to Perth to watch his team ! My kids enjoyed an exclusive tour around Mecca with John, but my camera got stolen that night ! All in all John I have found to be one of the true gents of football and great to still see him at the club

David Zieloni says: I was devasted when John left Rangers for Watford. Unfortunately this was in the pre Souness era when cash was tight but losing out on big John to Watford hurt. The man was a true gentleman and exemplified all that is best in Ulstermen; work ethic, humility and loyalty. I would have loved to have seen him play alongside Terry Butcher at Ibrox. It would have been an awesome pairing.

Warren Turfrey says: my lads just played at tingley athletic and big john mcclelland was coaching a tingley junior team on the other pitch

dave says: Hi, can anyboby provide me with Big johns e mail address at leeds?

Michael Greenwood says: I took the tour of the stadium that my dad used to take me to when I was a lad in the early Seventies - John was the guide, and did an excellent job. The lady told me it was scheduled for just over an hour ...well I left Elland Road about 4 hours later after the extensive tour & after John had taken me to lunch, shown me the offices and given me some signed photos to take back to my boys in the USA!!! Outstanding! Needless to say, I loaded up in the gift shop with loads of LUFC goodies, including the DVD of Leeds 100 greatest goals,and it does play in my US DVD machine. Thanks for a superb experience John!! BTW I still play myself at the age of 43 on team Dynamo in this league

in Atlanta Georgia

Dominic says: A couple of years back I went back up to Leeds, where I used to live with my family. On returning I decided to treat my brother by taking the Elland Road tour, I had done it about 7 years ago when I knew players such as Dorigo and Fairclough. On arriving the lady at the desk said there were no more tours, as it was some kids birthday. We said we just wanted to have a quick look around the stadium. John came down and said yes, that my brother and I could go with this kids birthday tour. In the end, fantastic time. I actually used to see him play even though I couldnt remember him. He was the type of player that was so good and reliable (nothing flashy) that you wouldnt rememeber if he was on the pitch.


Have your say

Did you see John McClelland play? Did you meet him in a pub, go to school with him, decorate his house or buy a motor from him? If you've got any comments or stories about John McClelland on or off the pitch, just fill in the form below and (provided they're not blatantly libellous) I'll add them to this page. And just a quick note to the spammers who try to add their links to this page by attempting to get round the client-side validation: don't bother - the server side does similar checks and throws your garbage straight into the bit bucket.

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