• Les Dagger PNE

  • Sadly, one of our oldest former players, William Corbett, died in Scotland last week, at the age of 88. He was born near Falkirk in 1922, the same year as Sir Tom Finney was born.

  • As a youth, the young defender signed for Dunipace Thistle before moving on to Maryhill Juniors. His solid performances soon attracted scouts from near and far.

  • In May 1941 he was snapped up by Celtic, but within twelve months he had joined the Royal Navy. During the wartime period, as well as playing for Celtic, he also guested for Cardiff City (1 app), Southampton (1 app), West Ham (31 apps) and Swansea Town (51 apps). Two of his seven brothers also played for West Ham.

  • At one stage, Bill looked like he was going to hit the big time when he was called up for a war-time international against England. He was up against Tommy Lawton and for a 22 year-old, gave a very polished performance in goalless draw. But it was war-time and Bill was posted overseas.

  • After the war, Bill played two seasons for Celtic before being transferred, in June 1948, to Preston North End, for 10,000. He was first choice centre-half until December when the Club hit rock bottom of the First Division. If truth be known he had been struggling to make his mark in, what was then, a below-par Preston North End team. With Bill Shankly in his last season, and Tom Finney out injured for a good part of the campaign, the team were relegated to the Second Division. William Corbett was then transferred to Leicester City for 7,000. After a season with The Foxes he joined Yeovil Town prior to returning home to Scotland. Spells with Dunfermline and Morton followed before hanging up his boots.

  • The thoughts of the Association go out to his family at this sad time.

    Words by Ian Rigby.