Malcolm Macdonald

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Malcolm Macdonald
Personal information
Full nameMalcolm Ian Macdonald
Date of birth (1950-01-07) 7 January 1950 (age 71)
Place of birth Fulham, England
Position(s) Forward
Senior career*
1967–1968 Tonbridge Angels 74 (11)
1968–1969 Fulham 13 (5)
1969–1971 Luton Town 88 (49)
1971–1976 Newcastle United 187 (95)
1976–1979 Arsenal 84 (42)
1979 Djurgården 9 (2)
National team
1972–1975 England 14 (6)
Teams managed
1980–1984 Fulham
1987–1988 Huddersfield Town
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Malcolm Ian Macdonald (born 7 January 1950) is an English former professional footballer, manager and media figure. Nicknamed 'Supermac', Macdonald was a quick, powerfully built prolific goalscorer. He played for Fulham, Luton Town, Newcastle United, Arsenal and England. [1] Macdonald is Newcastle United's fifth highest goalscorer of all time. He also won England's Golden Boot with Newcastle in 1975 and with Arsenal in 1977. [1]


Early years and Fulham

Born in Finlay Street, Fulham, a stone's throw from Craven Cottage, he attended the same school(Sloane Grammar school on Hortensia Rd in Chelsea) as former Genesis and GTR guitarist Steve Hackett. [2] Macdonald started his career as a full back before switching to centre forward. He started his career at Barnet. [3] After playing for non-league side Tonbridge, his schoolboy hero Bobby Robson paid £1,000 to sign him for Fulham in 1968 just after their relegation from the Football League First Division. [4]

Luton Town

A year later he moved to Luton Town. At Luton he scored 58 times in 101 matches. When he left Luton for Newcastle in 1971, for a fee of 180k, he was driven to his new club in a Rolls Royce.

Newcastle United

Newcastle United manager Joe Harvey signed him for £180,000 in the summer of 1971. He made an immediate impact by scoring a hat-trick on his home debut against Liverpool. [5] It was in this game that MacDonald earned the nickname "Supermac", which came from a chant by the Newcastle fans to the tune of Jesus Christ Superstar, namely, "Supermac, superstar, how many goals have you scored so far?" [3]

In his first season Newcastle were bottom of the table on 30 October 1971 after Everton handed them their fifth consecutive defeat of the season. That match was the Newcastle debut of Tony Green. With Green and Macdonald teaming up effectively up front for Newcastle, the team prospered, with an unbeaten run of 5 wins and 2 draws to and climbed up the table. They finished the league eleventh, with Macdonald scoring 30 goals in 52 games in his first season to be Newcastle's top scorer in 1972. [6] He top scored again in 1973, 1974, 1975 and 1976. He also won the First Division's golden boot for that 1975–76 season. [7] [8] [9]

Macdonald scored twice, eliminating Burnley F.C. in the 1973–74 FA Cup semi-final. In the 1974 FA Cup Final Newcastle lost 3–0 to Liverpool. [10]

During the TV show Superstars in 1975, Macdonald ran 100m in 10.9 seconds. [11]


Macdonald left Newcastle for Arsenal in 1976, for an unusual fee of £333,333.34. He was the club's top scorer for two consecutive seasons and won the golden boot of 1977. Macdonald, at the time not fully fit, got to the FA Cup final of 1978 where he earned a runners up medal. At the start of the 1978–79 season, he suffered a knee injury in a League Cup match against Rotherham, an ailment from which he was unable to completely recover. [1] [8] [12]


He spent a couple of months in Sweden with Djurgården after which he announced his retirement from playing at the premature age of 29 in August 1979. In his footballing career, Macdonald scored a total of 193 goals. [13]

International career

While at Newcastle, he made his England debut against Wales. Macdonald was on the England scoresheet for the first time in a friendly 2–0 win over then World Champions West Germany.

On 16 April 1975, in a European Championship qualifier also held at Wembley Macdonald scored all five goals in a 5–0 victory for England against Cyprus equalling the record for the most goals scored in a single game by an England player. This feat has not been repeated since by any English footballer. [14] Although three pre-war players, Howard Vaughton, Steve Bloomer and Willie Hall, had previously scored five for England, Macdonald was the first, and remains the only, player to do so in a competitive international. His feat spawned the newspaper headline "SuperMac 5, Cyprus 0". [9]

In total he played 14 times for England scoring six goals.

Football management

After retirement from playing, he returned to Fulham as a manager in 1980. His time at Craven Cottage was initially successful, with promotion to the Second Division being achieved in 1982. [15]

In the 1982–83 season, they appeared certainties for promotion to the First Division for the majority of the season, but a slump in the later stages of the season allowed their lead to wither away and they finished 4th. The following season began as a struggle before a second half turnaround saw them into mid-table safety, with Macdonald, even before the season's end leaving the club in April 1984. [15]

He returned to management at Huddersfield Town in 1987, but his time in charge proved unfruitful as the side were relegated from the Second Division in dismal fashion.

Macdonald is now the President of North Shields F.C.. [16]

Media career

Macdonald worked extensively for Real Radio North East, presenting, firstly in 2000, the Legends Football Phone-In, alongside Bernie Slaven and Micky Horswill. At the end of the 2011–12 season the programme was axed from Real Radio and then made its way upon Star Radio North East, so continuing in a similar format until 2014. [17] [18] Macdonald also presented an interview series for the Century Radio Network titled Upfront With Malcolm Macdonald, in which he talked to famous players such as Ian Wright, Joe Royle and Peter Beardsley among others. [19]

He also writes a regular column for the retro football magazine Backpass as well. [20]

In 2011, Macdonald was strongly critical of Newcastle United's decision to change their stadium name from St James' Park to the Sports Direct Arena. Macdonald said: "It seems antagonistic. It's not only part of the football club's heritage, but part of the heritage of the city." [21]

Outside football

After a failed business venture and divorcing his second wife, he struggled with the aftermath of his injury. Macdonald said that the pain from his long-standing knee injury led to an increasing dependence on alcohol. He eventually gave up drinking in 1997. [22]

Macdonald is married to Carol, the former wife of Brian Johnson. It was Carol who helped Macdonald to a rehabilitation programme. [22] [23]

He has been known to present trophies at football tournaments, including one held at Haggerston Castle Holiday Park.

Career statistics


Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
ClubSeasonLeagueCup League Cup Other [24] Total
Fulham [25] 1968–69 Second Division135000000135
Luton Town [26] 1969–70 Third Division46253152005428
1970–71 Second Division42242432004730
Newcastle United [26] 1971–72 First Division42232221645230
1972–73 First Division35172111954724
1973–74 First Division29159723434428
1974–75 First Division42212066855832
1975–76 First Division39197471305624
Arsenal [26] 1976–77 First Division41253361005029
1977–78 First Division39156774005226
1978–79 [27] First Division4200101062
Djurgården 1979 Allsvenskan92000092
Career total381193362940213117488260


Appearances and goals by national team and year
National teamYearAppsGoals
England Under 23 [28] 197244
England [28] 197230

International goals

Scores and results list England's goal tally first, score column indicates score after each Macdonald goal.
List of international goals scored by Malcolm Macdonald
# [28] DateVenueOpponentResultCompetition
112 March 1975 Wembley Stadium Flag of Germany.svg  West Germany 2–0 Friendly
2, 3, 4, 5, 616 April 1975Wembley StadiumFlag of Cyprus.svg  Cyprus 5–0 Euro 1976 qualifier




Newcastle United


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  1. 1 2 3 4 "Golden Boot Game". Golden Boot
  2. "Bob Harris Show". BBC Radio 2 . 17 February 2004.Missing or empty |url= (help)
  3. 1 2 Edwards, Luke (5 January 2018). "Malcolm Macdonald interview: 'They called me Super Mouth when I joined Newcastle because I said I'd score 30 goals in my first season'". The Telegraph. Retrieved 9 September 2020.
  4. "Bobby Robson – the top 10 signings". 31 July 2009. Retrieved 1 August 2009.
  5. "Newcastle United v Liverpool, 21 August 1971". Retrieved 27 January 2020.
  6. The Joy of six, The Guardian
  7. "Malcolm Macdonald: Profile".
  8. 1 2 "Newcastle legend Malcolm Macdonald turns 65 today". Chronicle
  9. 1 2 3 "Supermac inducted into hall of fame". Archived from the original on 23 September 2016.
  10. 1 2 "Football League Greats: Malcolm Macdonald".
  11. "Superstars History and Top Facts" (PDF). BBC Sport . 5 November 2004. Retrieved 27 September 2008. No one believed that Macdonald would be able to run that fast again straight away. He ran the race, won it again, and beat his own record in 10.9 seconds. He held the European record for seven years until Des Drummond ran the 100m in 10.85 seconds in the 1982 International Superstars in Hong Kong.
  12. "Malcolm Macdonald: Profile". Archived from the original on 9 August 2016.
  13. "Memory Lane". Fulham
  14. "Record for most goals in a game - Malcolm McDonald on David Platt & Gary Lineker FATV".
  15. 1 2 "Managers: Malcolm Macdonald". Fulham
  16. "North Shields Committee & Contact Details". North Shields F.C.
  17. "The Legends radio show to return on Koast Radio". The Journal. 2 August 2012. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
  18. Vickers, Anthony (2 April 2014). "'We've been swimming against the tide for a few years but now it's time to call it a day'". Gazette Live. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  19. "Upfront with Malcolm Macdonald". 100 Century Archived from the original on 28 September 2007.
  20. "Backpass Magazine". Back Pass
  21. Starforth, Miles (10 November 2011). "St James' Park renaming will 'antagonise' United fans". Jarrow and Hebburn Gazette. Retrieved 9 March 2013.
  22. 1 2 Jackson, Jamie (3 August 2003). "Triumph and despair". The Observer . Guardian Media Group . Retrieved 27 September 2008.
  23. Paul Stenning, AC/DC: Two Sides to Every Glory, Chrome Dreams, 2005, ISBN   1-84240-308-7
  24. "Malcolm Macdonald: 1971-79 seasons: (other) games".
  25. Malcolm Macdonald's Autobiography "Never Afraid to Miss" gives information on Fulham career stats and some Luton data.
  26. 1 2 3 Topps Football Card 1978-79 for Malcolm Macdonald, which gives data for seasons 1970-71 through to 1977-78.
  27. "Arsenal's 1978-79 season".
  28. 1 2 3 4 "Malcolm MacDonald: Profile". England Football
  29. "The 1976 League Cup Final: An important 40-year retrospect". Outside Archived from the original on 15 March 2017.
  30. "1978 - Osbourne's year".
  31. "Football Legends list in full". BBC Sport. 5 August 1998. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  32. "THE FOOTBALL LEAGUE 100 LEGENDS". Archived from the original on 19 March 2011. Retrieved 20 December 2017.