Jimmy Stephen

Jimmy Stephen, one of Avenue’s great players of the 1940s, died on Monday (Nov 5) after a long battle with cancer. Jimmy had celebrated his 90th birthday in August.

The full-back was plucked from Scottish minor football in September 1938 by Avenue manager David Steele, and signed professional forms on his 17th birthday just days before the 1939-40 league season commenced. He made his Second Division debut on August 30, 1939.

During the war he made 195 appearances for the club, and was also selected to play for Scotland in five wartime internationals. He gained two full caps for his country in 1946, when he skippered the team, and in 1947, both against Wales. After making a further 94 Second Division appearances, he was transferred to Portsmouth in November 1949 for a hefty fee of £15,000. He continued playing for a number of seasons in non-league football after leaving Pompey, but later returned to settle in the Portsmouth area.