A Motherwell Great - Charlie Aitken

Last updated : 14 January 2008 By Firparkcorner

He was a one team man. Even among his contemporaries in the 1950s and 1960s it was rare for such a quality player to devote his whole career in the service of one team.

Charlie Aitken
He was seventeen when he signed for us and he scored in his debut in 1951. He had to complete a two year spell of national service but returned in 1954 and played until his injured knee forced retirement in 1966. That was a spell of seventeen years comprising 313 appearances and 36 goals.

His position was right-half and he was easy to pick out on the field. His blond hair and his long stride set him apart.

He was a great header of the ball and a fierce but fair tackler. He could read the game and was skilful in passing.

He earned the respect of team mates and opponents and earned the reputation of being a gentleman. Rash tackles were not in his style, he was a sportsman and was booked once in his career (and he claimed that Tiny Wharton got it wrong!). He was an 'Ancell Babe' but never earned a full cap despite being one of the best players of his generation. Charlie was last honoured at Fir Park a year ago when he was given the number four shirt in the Greatest Motherwell team. Ill health prevented his attendance.

His knee proved to be the weakness which ended his playing days and he was given a testimonial in 1967.

He was asked in 1964, "When were you most proud to be a Motherwell player?" His answer "Every time I pull the jersey over my head".