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Scottish Football's Greatest 100: 70-61

Written by The Away End.

The Away End are naming the top 100 players to have graced Scottish football. Today, we look at the players ranked 70 to 61.
 
70: FRANCK SAUZEE
 
Scottish club: Hibernian
 
Lewis Barnes: Franck Sauzee is a Hibernian legend and the greatest player a generation of fans saw at Easter Road. 
 
Arriving when the club was at a low ebb following relegation, the signing of the former European Cup winner was a real coup by manager Alex McLeish and the Frenchman ensured a swift return to the top flight and European qualification. 
 
An inspirational captain, Sauzee made the game look simple both in a central midfield and a sweeper role and brought the best out of sometimes limited team mates.  The Frenchman also possessed a lethal shot and scored many memorable goals. 
 
His love for the club was more than reciprocated by the supporters and chants of “There’s only one Sauzee” reverberate around Leith to this day.  His spell at Hibs may have ended under something of a cloud after only 69 days as manager but his place in Hibernian folklore is secure aided by an unbeaten record in Edinburgh derbies including starring in the famous 6-2 game. 
 
Sauzee loved the fixture, even if clinching one of them with a stunning header cost him two teeth and left him unconscious.  There really is only one Sauzee.
 
 
 
69: WILLIE ORMOND
 
Scottish clubs: Stenhousemuir, Hibernian, Falkirk.
 
Lewis Barnes: Over fifteen years as a player for Hibs, Ormond won three league titles and scored well over 100 goals.  The last of the famous five to leave Easter road he also had a short spell managing the club after assisting the success of the Turnbull’s Tornadoes.  Ormond also took charge of Scotland during the 1974 World Cup.  Despite being knocked out in the Group Stages they were the only unbeaten team in the tournament and it remains Scotland best world cup performance to date. 
 
However, it is his playing career at Easter road that marks him out as a true legend.  Short, strong and incredibly quick he possessed a lethal left foot and set up many goals for team mates.
 
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Scottish Football's 62nd Greatest Player: Stefan Klos

Written by Calum McClurkin.

It would have been difficult for anyone to make a strong impression at Rangers after matching Celtic’s nine league titles in a row but Stefan Klos certainly did at Ibrox when he arrived on Christmas Eve 1998.

On reflection the 1997-98 season was one of drastic change. Old heroes such as Andy Goram, Stuart McCall, Brian Laudrup, Paul Gascoigne, Ally McCoist and the manager at the time Walter Smith departed the club at the end of the season.

These stalwarts needed to be replaced but it is hard when most of these names listed  go down as all time greats who provided an unrivalled glittering spell of success for Rangers. Could they be replaced? The first problem the new boss, Dick Advocaat, addressed was goalkeeper.

Stefan Klos came to Rangers with a fine CV. Two league titles of his own and a Champions League winners medal with his hometown club, Borussia Dortmund. A £700,000 transfer fee and a wage that would see him become one of the highest paid players in the game was enough to lure Klos to Scotland and to take over from Goram as Rangers number one.

Instantly, huge pressure was on the goalkeeper’s shoulders. Rangers failed to win a trophy for the first time in 12 years in the 1997-98 season and the German had to juggle the expectation of Rangers restoring success and the fact that he had the responsibility of taking over from one of Scotland’s greatest goalkeepers ever immediately.

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Scottish Football's 74th Greatest Player: Craig Gordon

Written by David Coates.

The most expensive British goalkeeper Craig Gordon burst onto the Scottish scene at just 20 years of age taking over as Hearts number one during the start of the 2002-2003 season.

However it was his outstanding performance away against Bordeaux which showed his potential to be one of Scotland’s greatest goalkeepers in the last decade.

He produced a series of fantastic saves including a breathtaking stop to deny former Rangers striker Jean-Claude Darcheville as Hearts secured a 1-0 victory in one of their best Europe away results.
Gordon had some great success during his time at Tynecastle playing a key part in the Jambos second place finish in the 2005-2006 season and their Scottish Cup success against Gretna.

In the penalty shootout against the then second division side Gordon saved from Derek Townsley as Hearts won 4-2 on penalties.

The season was to get even better for the Scots keeper as he won the Scottish Football Writers Association Player of the Year the first Hearts player to win the award since Sandy Jardine in 1986.
Gordon produced consistent displays and a couple of years later became Scotland’s number one keeper a position he would hold for seven years.

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Scottish Football's 72nd Greatest Player: Mark Hateley

Written by Gary McDaniel.

The son of the Liverpool forward Tony Hateley, Mark had big football boots to fill. After spells at Coventry, Portsmouth and successful stints abroad in Detroit, Milan and Monaco. Hateley arrived at Ibrox, in the summer of 1990, to rebuild his career after a nasty ankle injury while playing in France.

Rangers had just enjoyed another league championship, propelled there by the goals of Ally McCoist and Mo Johnston, a deadly partnership. The Rangers legions were then surprised when Hateley began to feature in the Rangers starting eleven, partnering Johnston up front, the following season. The big Englishman bore the brunt of some unwarranted criticism from the Ibrox boo boys. This was due to the perception that it was Hateley that was leaving, fans hero Super Ally, on the bench. The truth was it was Mo Johnston that was keeping McCoist on the side-lines.

Hateley proved his worth by helping Rangers to another league title. His two goals in the last day title decider against Aberdeen in 1991 proved to be the turning point in his relations with the Ibrox crowd.
He was now villain turned hero.

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Scottish Football's Greatest 100: 80-71

Written by The Away End.

The Away End have put together the 100 greatest players to have graced Scottish football. Here we continue our countdown from 80th to 71st.
 
80: BRIAN MCCLAIR
 
Scottish clubs: Motherwell, Celtic
 
"Choccy" started off in England, but had to come home to Scotland first to make his name, before returning doing the business for Man Utd.
 
He signed for Motherwell, grabbing a hat-trick against Rangers, then scoring two goals against less than two weeks later.
 
He replaced Charlie Nicholas at Celtic, scoring an impressive 32 goals in his first season and establishing himself as a prolific striker.
 

Scottish Football's Greatest 100: 90-81

Written by The Away End.

The Away End continue the countdown of the greatest 100 players in history to grace Scottish football.
 
90: PAUL HARTLEY
 
Scottish clubs: Hamilton, Raith Rovers, Hibernian, Greenock Morton, St Johnstone, Hearts, Celtic, Aberdeen.
 
A man of many clubs, Paul Hartley was a bit of a late bloomer. By the time he had arrived at Tynecastle he had already spent time at six different clubs, with a spell at Millwall being added to his vast array of Scottish sides.
 
He started out as a right winger, doing a decent enough job, but it was when Sandy Clark utilised him as a central attacking midfielder at St Johnstone that we began to see what "Zico" was capable of.
 
At Hearts he became a legend. His three goals against his old club Hibs in the 2006 Scottish Cup semi-final cemented his place in Scottish football folklore, and even a red card in the final against Gretna could not darken his star.
 
He also went into the history books as the man who stepped up, under incredible pressure, to score the penalty against Aberdeen that sealed Hearts a place in the Champions League qualifiers in 2006, the first time a club had split the Old Firm in 12 years.
 
After Hearts he went on to Celtic where Gordon Strachan preferred him in more of a withdrawn role from the box to box midfielder we had been used to seeing at Hearts, but he still slotted in well performing at the highest level in the Champions League and also for Scotland.
 
His final season in Scotland was at Aberdeen where injuries lessened his influence and he eventually decided to retire, but even then he managed to win over fans who previously hated him, netting a hat-trick on his debut and helping lead them to two semi-finals. 
 
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Scottish Football's 83rd Greatest Player: Joe Baker

Written by Jim Thornton.

Joe Baker was a quiet person off the field, preferring to let his goals do the talking for him – a wise move, perhaps, given the England international’s broad Scottish accent. 
 
Baker was born in Liverpool in 1940, but his Scottish family moved from Merseyside to Motherwell when he was only weeks old in order to avoid wartime bombing raids.  This accident of birth meant that he was ineligible to play for Scotland under the stricter international criteria of the day.

Baker starred for Hibs from 1957 to 1961, scoring 102 league goals in only 117 appearances for the Easter Road side. If that strike rate is remarkable by today’s Hibs standards, he did do what many of his successors in the green and white have done since – he appeared in a losing Scottish Cup final side, against Clyde in 1957-58.

He then moved on to Torino to partner Denis Law, but his time in Italy was cut short when he was seriously injured in a car crash.  On his return to Britain, he scored 100 goals for Arsenal in only 156 games; Arsene Wenger must look at Nicklas Bendtner, lift his eyes to the ceiling, and sigh. 
 
This was followed by a successful spell at Nottingham Forest, and then to Sunderland, back to Hibs, before finishing his playing career at Raith.

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Scottish Football's 89th Greatest Player: Jimmy Wardhaugh

Written by Jim Thornton.

Jimmy Wardhaugh’s name may be unfamiliar to some Scottish fans today, especially those who know nothing about players who aren’t in their Fantasy Football eleven. 
 
But to Hearts supporters of a certain age, Wardhaugh, Bauld, and Conn were the real thing - Tynecastle’s Terrible Trio of the late Forties and Fifties.  Rudi Skacel and Christian Nade?  You’re having a laugh!  And Ian Black is just terrible in comparison.

Although an old-fashioned inside-forward rather than an out-and-out striker, Wardhaugh – Twinkletoes to his admirers – was the club’s leading league scorer with 206 goals in 303 games until a certain John Robertson came along. 
 
Jimmy joined the Jambos in 1946, and was a regular in the side from then until he left for Dunfermline in 1959.  A consistent performer for Hearts throughout his career, he was very much at his peak between 1954 and 1959, when he won two League Cups, one Scottish Cup, and a League Championship with the men in maroon.

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