Article Superstar DJ - Derek Johnstone

What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.
I think at the time we forgot how young he was.
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.

Left on the bench while Scotland huffed and puffed and couldnt score against Iran in 1978.

The mind boggles.
 
He used to come and sit at the bar in the lounge of the Normandy Hotel when the disco was on. I worked behind the bar. From memory, he drank Vodka and orange. I think he was also in the Ferry Inn a lot. He liked a voddy now and again. :))
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.
With the correct attitude he would have been the Greatest Ranger.
Scary to recall his career went downhill at 24.
 
And what a legend of a man and human being too.

Unfortunately I was too young to see him play in the flesh, but I had the pleasure of meeting him at an RSEA event where he told some stories from his career. And later on he posed for photos and spoke to anyone who approached him.

As you all say, total legend as a player.

Modern footballers really could learn a thing or two from fellow old pros like DJ, in the way they interact with the very people who pay their wages and idolise them.

It still makes my blood boil that players from DJ's era and before, real legends, never made anywhere near the kind of money that even poor players make from the game today earn.

Which is also a good reason and plug, for anyone that can contribute, to buy the beautiful RSEA, 'Rangers, Former Players Benevolent Fund', badges, to assist these guys, who if they played today would be multi millionaires.
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.
He was before my time but if he'd continued upfront he'd have scored more than Ally IMHO.
 
Absolutely fantastic player. I wonder what he would be worth in this day and age. Many tens of millions that is for sure. If we had someone with half his ability now we would already have won the league.

A true Rangers legend.
 
Now he is a legend.
It wasn't that long ago he was getting called all sort of names due to his appearances on Clyde.
An immense player for us in 70's.Scoring some brilliant goals. From either Centre Half. or Centre Forward position.Club legend for sure.
(Some people have very short memories).

How is he doing these days?
Does he attend many games??
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.
100%
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.

Great summation of DJ's career. Without a shadow of a doubt DJ is the best header of a ball I have seen.

Like you, firmly believe his career can easily be split in two, pre & post summer 1978 but that should never take away from how great a player he was. 100% an Ibrox legend and for me he would be in my all time Rangers 11 as our number 9, replacing the magnificent Hateley.
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.

A travesty he isn't in the all time eleven beside Ally Perhaps all the games he played at centre half and midfield counted against him
 
A travesty he isn't in the all time eleven beside Ally Perhaps all the games he played at centre half and midfield counted against him
I'm not convinced who should be the centre forward beside Ally in our greatest ever team. It is DJ in my lifetime, but I simply don't know if he was better than some absolute giants from before my time.
RC Hamilton, Jimmy Fleming, Jimmy Smith, Willie Thornton, Jimmy Millar.

You can make a case for them, and others.
 
He was brilliant player whether in defence, midfield or up front. I still think his best position was centre half imo.
 
He used to come and sit at the bar in the lounge of the Normandy Hotel when the disco was on. I worked behind the bar. From memory, he drank Vodka and orange. I think he was also in the Ferry Inn a lot. He liked a voddy now and again. :))
We were in one Friday, circa 76/77 and a guy from our table went over to speak to him while he was propping up the bar. He told him that one of our company was playing down the Cowan Park in Barrhead the next day and was off the drink as a result and how Derek should maybe follow suit as he was playing for Rangers on the Saturday. The big man told him where to go, as you would.

Still one of my absolute heroes who could have done anything in the game if he'd wanted.

Probably too much, too young.
 
We were in one Friday, circa 76/77 and a guy from our table went over to speak to him while he was propping up the bar. He told him that one of our company was playing down the Cowan Park in Barrhead the next day and was off the drink as a result and how Derek should maybe follow suit as he was playing for Rangers on the Saturday. The big man told him where to go, as you would.

Still one of my absolute heroes who could have done anything in the game if he'd wanted.

Probably too much, too young.
I think that would be about the time I worked in the Normandy. You will remember Craigie baby Davis the DJ then. I know the above as fact as I witnessed it, but my ex B-in-L drank in the Ferry Inn and he told me DJ used to take part in Vodka drinking competitions. I never seen it myself, but my ex B-in-L was also a huge vodka drinker, so I quite believe him.
 
I'm not convinced who should be the centre forward beside Ally in our greatest ever team. It is DJ in my lifetime, but I simply don't know if he was better than some absolute giants from before my time.
RC Hamilton, Jimmy Fleming, Jimmy Smith, Willie Thornton, Jimmy Millar.

You can make a case for them, and others.

True if you look at that team it's essentially one of the best post 1960 choices basically in the TV era
 
What a footballer.

Just the stats and numbers will never do him justice. For example, in his his first 3 winning cup finals against Celtic, he played 1 up front, 1 at centre half and 1 in midfield. And you can definitely split his career as one before Jock Wallace left in 1978, then afterwards. Although still only in his mid 20s, he was never again that incredible player from that day.
Crazy when you look at the bare numbers and you see he only hit double figures in the league 5 times in his 15 seasons. But there was hardly a season he played exclusively up front.

Everyone who knows me will know how biased I am when it comes to DJ. I firmly believe he wasn't just the best all-round player we've had in my lifetime, and not just the best in the air. He was the best Scottish player of the 1970s given what he achieved and the age he did it.

Scored an Old Firm cup final winner at 16.
Had scored in 2 Old Firm cup finals at 17.
Won a European trophy at 18.
Capped at 19, and played for his country both at centre half and centre forward.
Won his first league title at 21 as a midfielder.
Top scorer in 2 trebles by the age of 24.
First ever Players Player of the Year.

I think I'm right in saying he has more Rangers appearances as a teenager than any other who played for the club.

God only knows how many more goals and medals he would have added if Wallace never left and his attitude was right.
Hi goal with the heid against NI In the home internationals before the 78 world cup was fabulous
 
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