Pompey Hall of Famer dies

Albie McCann was inducted into the Pompey Hall of Fame in 2011. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (111114-4)
Albie McCann was inducted into the Pompey Hall of Fame in 2011. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (111114-4)
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The Blues are in mourning after the death of Albert McCann today, aged 72.

‘Albie’ will be remembered for the sterling service he gave to the Blues over 12 years, from 1962 to 1974.

He made 379 appearances for the club, as a striker and a midfielder, scoring 98 league and cup goals.

McCann signed for the club in August 1962 for £8,000 from Coventry City, having impressed manager George Smith the previous season when scoring against the Blues at Fratton Park.

Twenty-year-old McCann slotted into the inside-left position and proved a bargain over the next few seasons, embarrassing countless opposing defenders with his trick of stepping over the ball.

He also possessed a fine shot and many of his goals were low right-footed efforts from the edge of the penalty area.

In October 1966, McCann scored the only hat-trick of his career, earning a 3-3 draw at Bristol City.

The 1967-68 campaign saw him register 16 goals – his best tally – making him the side’s leading goalscorer for the third successive season.

In his later years with the club, he was used more often in midfield and was extremely capable of blotting out a dangerous opponent when being handed a marking job.

In 1973, McCann was rewarded with a testimonial and the match with West Ham drew a crowd of over 22,000.

He was inducted into the Blues’ Hall of Fame in 2011 and is fondly remembered by club historian Barry Harris.

He said: ‘Albie’s goal in our FA Cup third-round replay at Hull City in 1967 was fantastic.

‘He was a terrific player, very nice man and loved the club.

‘My thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.’