Goalkeeper Alan Rough was an astute signing by Pat Stanton when he joined Hibs from Partick Thistle during the 1982/83 season, after fourteen often-brilliant seasons at Firhill.
National team Scotland
International debut 7th April 1976 (versus Switzerland)
It could be argued that during Alan Rough's time between the posts at Easter Road, he was just about solely responsible for keeping Hibernian in the Scottish Premier - and it could be argued that he did the same for his previous club Partick Thistle as well! Signed for the meagre sum of £60,000 in November 1982, Roughie went on to become a huge fans favourite at Easter Road and to this day is a popular visitor to the stadium.
Characteristically calm, Alan always gave the impression that even a bomb going off close by wouldn't faze him. This calmness was perhaps most personified during the vital World Cup qualifier against Wales in Cardiff in September 1986. Jim Leighton, who had replaced Alan as Scotland's first choice keeper, lost a contact lens and Alan was asked to step into the breach for the second half. He did so in his usual unflappable manner, keeping a clean sheet while gaining what was to be the last of his 53 International caps. Scotland of course gained the vital point they required to secure a play-off spot against Australia courtesy of a Davie Cooper penalty, but Alan like everyone else only remembers the match for the tragic death of the legendary Jock Stein who collapsed close to full time and sadly passed away shortly thereafter.
The Glasgow born goalkeeper started his career at Partick Thistle as a schoolboy signing in 1969, and was a part of the Thistle side that stunned Scottish Football in 1971 with a 4-0 hammering of Celtic in the League Cup Final that year. He also went on to win a First Division Championship medal with the Jags in 1976. During his time at Firhill, Alan made a staggering 410 league appearances for Thistle and in his final full season at Firhill he was named as the Scottish Football Writer's Player of the Year as a result of his highly consistent and indeed some would say brilliant performances for the Jags.
On the International front, Rough was already the holder of 51 caps before joining Hibs after represented Scotland as first choice goalkeeper in two World Cup Finals, Argentina in 1978 and Spain in 1982. A more than secure last line of defence at Easter Road for several seasons, Rough was again called into the Scotland set up as back up to Leighton for the World Cup qualifier against Wales at Ninian Park on 10th September 1985. Rough's international career looked over due mainly to the brilliant consistency of Aberdeen's Jim Leighton. He was also a member of the squad that travelled to Mexico in 1986 although he was to make no further appearances for his country. Rough's last turn out for Scotland was a 2-1 defeat by England at Wembley in April 1986.
It was the World Cup Finals match against Holland in Mendoza that stands out for most people, with Scotland almost doing the unthinkable and qualifying for the second stages despite dismal performances against both Peru and Iran. Sadly it was not to be after Archie Gemmill's wonder goal which put Scotland 3-1 up was somewhat nullified by another fantastic strike courtesy of Johnny Rep for Holland. Alan recalls: "I only found out recently on the Real Radio football phone-in show that Rep's shot took a deflection off wee Archie Gemmill just as he struck it. Archie was our studio guest a few weeks ago and he admitted to this live on air! I knew I would have saved it otherwise!"
Alan was instrumental in guiding Hibs to a Skol League Cup Final appearance in 1985 where we unfortunately lost 3-0 to Aberdeen. That cup run was notable for the fact that Hibs beat both halves of the Old Firm on their way to Hampden. Alan's performance in the 2nd leg of the semi final that year against Rangers at Ibrox was arguably one of his best ever in a Hibs shirt as Rangers threw everything bar the kitchen sink at him! A string of fabulous saves meant we only lost the game by a single goal and progressed to the final courtesy of a 2-1 aggregate scoreline.
At the start of season 1987/88, Alan lost his place to another future International custodian who was brought to the club by then manager Alex Miller, namely Andy Goram, and after 5 years at Hibs he left the club leading many people to believe that it might be the end of his top flight career. Far from it however, he returned to Easter Road in Celtic's colours in October 1988 but unhappily for him, conceded three goals as the Hibees and Steve Archibald in particular turned on the style!
Having made 175 appearances for Hibs, Alan went on to five first-team outings for Celtic and also had spells with both Hamilton Accies and Ayr United before hanging up his gloves. He went on to have some success in management in the Ayrshire Junior leagues before the lure of after-dinner speaking and radio punditry took him away from hands-on involvement in the game. His after-dinner talks have entertained many a Hibs supporter at Easter Road, and the ever popular Rough is never short of a good word for Hibernian, retaining a keen interest in the progress of his former club.
Full name Alan Roderick Rough
Date of birth 25th November 1951
Place of birth Glasgow, Scotland
Height 6ft 1in