Sir Alex leads Mackay mourners


Famous faces from the world of football have joined hundreds of supporters and mourners to pay their final respects to former Hearts, Tottenham and Scotland captain Dave Mackay.

The Edinburgh-born midfielder died in hospital earlier this month at the age of 80.

Former team-mates and footballing figures including Sir Alex Ferguson, Denis Law, Frank McLintock, Ian St John, Alan Mullery and Bertie Auld attended Mackay’s funeral in Edinburgh on Tuesday.

The cortege left from Tynecastle Stadium, the home of Hearts, for a remembrance service in Mansfield Traquair in the capital.

Streets around the stadium were lined by hundreds of fans, who applauded the cortege as it drove past, with some throwing scarves and flowers on top of the funeral car.

Mackay won all three Scottish domestic honours with Hearts in the 1950s and was a key part of Spurs’ 1961 double-winning team.

Hearts described him as the club’s greatest-ever player and the current squad of players, who recently won the Scottish Championship, were in attendance along with manager Robbie Neilson and owner Ann Budge.

Spurs were represented by former players including Pat Jennings, Terry Medwin, Alan Gilzean, Steve Perryman, Mike England and Clive Allen.

Hearts chaplain Andy Prime led the service, which started with FA Cup hymn Abide With Me.

Former Hearts striker John Robertson did a reading at the memorial, while Ferguson and Mackay’s former Spurs team-mate Cliff Jones spoke about their memories of the 80-year-old.

Ferguson recalled the only time he played against Mackay.

“I was playing for Queen’s Park reserves against Hearts reserves at Tynecastle and the great Mackay was playing because he was coming back from a broken toe,” the former Manchester United manager said.

“He tackled me and I thought ‘Christ’, but in those days you had to get up no matter what. So I got up, had a look at that big barrel chest of his and he just said ‘are you all right, son?’.

“That was a great memory – the only time I played against Dave Mackay – and I’ll never forget it.”

Ferguson also lamented the fact Mackay won only 22 caps for Scotland.

“Everyone talks about his courage and bravery, but he was a fantastic footballer. He was skilful, he could play anywhere and he proved that.

“He was a fantastic guy and it’s a privilege to speak here today. I think we’ve seen the passing of a true, great legend.”

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