Regular subscribers to The Kit Rail will know that we’ve already covered Willie Pettigrew with his stunning Dundee United 1981 Scottish Cup Final Jersey. For that reason we are covering Willie’s full Scotland international career, from the under 23’s through to his last full cap.
Scotland Under 23’s
He made his international debut for the under 23 side, at the age of 21, in a friendly match in Sweden that was played on the 16th of April 1975. Scotland won this fixture 2-1.
A European Championship clash in Romania would see Willie score his first international goal in another 2-1 win coming on the 31st of May 1975.
Next up would be a double header against Denmark with Scotland securing a crucial 1-0 win away, on the 2nd of September 1975, and adding yet another victory, this time beating the Danish 4-1 on the 28th of October 1975.
Pettigrew ended the international calendar year with another European Championship Victory, grabbing himself a brace in a 4-0 destruction of Romania at Brockville on the 16th of December 1975. This result saw Scotland top their group and continue through the tournament.
Willie’s sixth and penultimate under 23 cap would come against Wales at Wrexhams Racecourse Ground on the 4th of February. During this game, Willie would score another brace to secure a narrow 3-2 victory for the Scots. We covered this match when we featured the Joey Jones jersey not too long ago.
The last cap to come for Willie Pettigrew would be in the second leg of the Under 23 European Championship Quarter Finals as Scotland took on The Netherlands in front of an amazing 32,000 fans at Easter Road, home of Hibernian, on the 24th of March 1976. Scotland lost the first game 2-0 (a game that Willie missed due to injury). Scotland would win the second game 2-0 but would lose on penalties after a 2-2 aggregate score. You can find more details on this match as we covered it during the Jan Everse jersey.
In all Willie started 7 games at under 23 level winning all seven and grabbing himself five goals in the process.
Full International Career
2 weeks after his last under 23 cap, Willie would make his full international debut and what a debut it would be.
A home friendly versus Switzerland on the 7th of April 1976 would see Willie net his first goal after only 2 minutes. This would be the only goal of the game as Scotland would win the game 1-0. This game has also been covered as we featured Rene Hasler earlier this week.
Cap number two would again see Willie find the net, scoring the first goal in a 3-1 win over Wales at Hampden Park on the 6th of May 1976. You can see more of this game and jersey on Terry Yorath’s page on the The Kit Rail.
A few days later would come cap number three which would see Scotland beat Northern Ireland convincingly in a 3-0 win at Hampden Park with goals from Gemmill, Masson and Dalglish.
Willie would have to wait six months for cap number four which would be a world cup qualifier against Wales. We would see another victory for Scotland and Pettigrew as the Scots would beat Wales 1-0.
Willie’s fifth and final cap would come on the 27th of April 1977 and would see Scotland run out as winners in a 3-1 victory against Sweden with goals coming from Hartford, Dalglish and Joe Crag.
Willie would play five times for his country, scoring two goals in the process and would be in the winning team on all five occasions. If you add Willie’s under 23 appearances, you end up with an impressive 12 games representing Scotland, 12 victories and a highly commendable 7 goals.
Willie Pettigrew, take a bow.