Dundee entertain Partick this midweek so we take a look at a player who played for both clubs, Eddie Annand. Annand started his career at Partick and is remembered at Dens as the man who scored the goal which clinched the 1997/98 First Division title before finishing as top goalscorer the following year when the Dark Blues matched their best top flight finish since being Scottish champions in 1962.
Edward Annand was born in Glasgow on March 23rd 1973 and started his football career with Partick Thistle before moving onto Sligo Rovers in Ireland after just one appearance at Firhill.
After three years in the League of Ireland, Annand returned home to Scotland to sign for Clyde and after fifty goals in two seasons for The Bully Wee, joined Dundee in March 1997 for a fee of £75, 000.
Dundee manager John McCormack, who had taken over the Dens Park hotseat at Christmas, was keen to add some firepower to his side after losing Lee Power and Paul Tosh in January and brought in Annand just before the March 31st signing deadline in preparation for the following season. With promotion already gone, ‘Cowboy’ was building for next year and his new 5ft 11in striker immediately started to pay dividends, with two goals in the last three games of the season.
With the support of new owners Peter and Jimmy Marr, McCormack brought in a number of new players in the summer with a view to getting promotion and amongst them was another striker James Grady from Clydebank, who would strike up a potent partnership with Annand. Between them Annand and Grady would score thirty-two goal to shoot Dundee into the inaugural SPL and on April 15th 1998, at Starks Park Kirkcaldy, Eddie scored the goal that gave Dundee the First Division title hen he equalised Paul Hartley’s strike in a 1-1 draw with Raith.
In total Annand would score fourteen goals in his first full season with the club and these included a brace against Stirling and the winner in a 2-1 win away at Airdrie in the two games immediately before the title party at Raith.
In the summer Jocky Scott, who had taken over from McCormack in March, decided to bring in Tommy Coyne and Willie Falconer to challenge for the striking positions and it meant that Annand and Grady started together just three times in the S.P.L. It mattered not however as Dundee finished fifth, their highest league position for twenty-five years and Annand finished top goalscorer with ten strikes from his twenty-one starts and ten appearances from the bench.
On November 22nd, Annand and Grady showed the fans that the old magic was still there, when they combined to score one of the most memorable goals in recent history. In a derby with United at Tanndice, Annand was in the starting line up with Grady starting on the bench and the turning point came when Eddie’s old strike partner came on to replace Tommy Coyne. The game had been pretty much one way traffic towards the Dark Blue goal but with just eight minutes remaining, Grady ran onto an Eddie Annand head flick and scored a spectacular thirty yarder to give The Dee a famous win.
In the earlier derby at Dens in September, Annand himself came off the bench to be a goal scoring hero when he brought Dundee back into the match with a fine headed goal just after United had taken a two goal lead. Annand’s goal gave Dundee hope and in injury time, The Dee got themselves back on level terms when Adamzcuk charged in and headed powerfully into the net, despite the best efforts of Dykstra in the United goal and it felt like a victory in all but name.
Annand’s goal was his second in consecutive home games and his first was equally as crucial as it gave Dundee a well deserved point against champions Celtic. In a torrid start to the season, Dundee had suffered four defeats with no goals scored but against Celtic on September 29th, the rot was stopped when Annand thundered a penalty home in the dying minutes to net Dundee’s first goal of the season and earn their first point in the 1-1 draw.
By the end of the season, Dundee finished an excellent fifth and above Dundee United for the first time in a quarter of a century and Annand scored some memorable goals along the way. In October, he scored a brace at Pittodrie to earn a 2-2 draw at a venue then traditionally difficult for The Dee and in March got another brace in a 2-0 win over Hearts which included a clever twenty-five yard lob over Rousett in the Hearts goal.
In Annand’s third season at Dens, he again had to fight for his place with Willie Falconer finding a rich vein of form and James Grady and later Paco Luna all fighting for a starting slot and at the end of the campaign he was amongst a number of players released when the new management team of Ivano and Dario Bonetti came in.
Annand therefore joined Ayr where he scored forty-four times in three seasons with The Honest Men and also had a short loan spell at Morton where he scored five times before moving onto St Mirren in 2003.
In 2004, Annand moved to Dumbarton and part-time football, and spent the latter part of 2005 with Raith Rovers, where he finished his senior career. In January 2006, Eddie moved into Junior football with Lochee United but quickly moved to Bathgate Thistle and after a spell out of the game, Annand came out of retirement to join Arthurlie in November 2007.
In October 2011, he joined Jim Duffy’s youth set-up at Clyde alongside former Dens Park team mate Lee Sharp, while outside of football he helps run a car hire firm which he set up when at Bathgate.
In his time with Dundee he scored thirty times in seventy-nine starts and he will always be remembered for that looping headed goal in Fife which fired Dundee back into the big time.
Honours at Dundee:
Scottish League First Division winner: 1997/98
League: 69 + 26 subs, 27 goals
Scottish Cup: 4 + 3 subs, 3 goals
League Cup: 6
S.F.L. Challenge Cup: 1 sub
Totals: 109, 30 goals