SOCCER

Sadness at death of Bobby Toland, St. Johnston

Tributes paid after death of Kildrum Tigers great

Sports Reporter

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Sports Reporter

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Sport@donegaldemocrat.com

Bobby Toland

Bobby Toland

There is sadness among the sporting community of Donegal following news of the death of Bobby Toland from St. Johnston.

Mr. Toland, who was 87, died in Letterkenny University Hospital on Sunday..

A very well known and much loved character, Bobby was a founding member of his beloved Kildrum Tigers FC and was also associated with Finn Harps and was a former manager of the League of Ireland side.

News of his death has been met by great sadness by all who knew him and in a statement on the club’s Facebook page on Sunday night, Kildrum Tigers looked back on Bobby’s close association with the club.

“Bobby resided in the townland of Kildrum, a name that he would, in 1948, use to christen one of Donegal soccer’s most famous clubs.

Alongside Paddy McDaid and Paddy McFadden, Bobby helped found Kildrum Tigers 70 years ago this year.

The name of Kildrum Tigers was known long before organised soccer arrived in Donegal and that is down largely to the efforts of Bobby Toland.

Kildrum played initially in the White Horse League before moving to the D&D in 1952, but it was in the summer cups that Kildrum - and Bobby - made their name.

Bobby was instrumental in getting Paddy Crerand, later a European Cup winner with Manchester United, to play for Kildrum and he was one of many top names drafted into the Tigers colours back then.

Crerand was at Celtic in those days and others Bobby coaxed into playing for Kildrum included Jody McIntyre (Ayr), Ian Hunter (Falkirk), Hughie Higgins (Hibs), Tom Wilson (Sunderland), Charlie Tully (Celtic), John McCole (Leeds), Denis Hatsell (Preston), Alex Greaves (Bolton and Bobby Browne (Motherwell).

To the wide circle of the Toland family, all Kildrum Tigers sends our sincere condolences.

And on the day Kildrum Tigers officially unveiled a new home kit, in those famous red and black stripes, we remember fondly the man who made it all possible; the man who was the club’s founding father and guiding light in the early days.”