Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-17 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games
Leeds United/City Reserves and Other Teams

McCluskey: George McKinley Cassidy (George)

1983-1986 (Player Details)

Centre Forward

Born: Hamilton, Lanarkshire: 19-09-1957

Debut: v Newcastle United (h): 27-08-1983

5’11” 12st (1985)

McCluskey played for St Catherine’s Secondary School, Uddingston, Holy Cross, Hamilton, and won five Scottish Schoolboy caps and four Youth caps. He was with Celtic Boys’ Club before signing for Celtic on 22nd July 1974 and was loaned to Thorniewood United before he made his senior debut in 1977-78. He formed a lethal partnership with Frank McGarvey during the early 1980's, often providing chances for his more prolific partner, although averaging over a goal every three games himself over an eight year Celtic career. He scored Celtic’s winner against Rangers in the 1980 Scottish Cup Final, redirected a Danny McGrain volley past Rangers goalkeeper Peter McCloy for an extra-time winner and won Scottish Championship medals in the following two seasons and was a member of the Scotland World Cup party in 1982, but never won a full cap. He did, however, represent the Under-Twenty-one side seven times. He made his International debut on 17th September 1978 in a 3-1 win over USA at Pittodrie and he then scored his first goals when he scored twice in a 5-1 win over Norway at Easter Road in the UEFA Cup on 24th October 1978, when scored the third and fourth goals. His other caps were all in the UEFA Cup, and there were two more goals in his third appearance as he scored the second from the penalty spot and then added the third in a 3-0 win in Lisbon against Portugal on 28th November 1978. Almost a year later, on 20th November 1979, he scored the only goal as Scotland beat Belgium in Beveren and then got his fifth cap in the reverse fixture at Tynecastle when it finished two goals each on 18th December 1979. He did not find the net in either of the other two games as Scotland drew 1-1 in Aarhus against Denmark on 13th October 1981 and then won 1-0 at Comunale Catanzaro on 23rd February 1982 against Italy. A wonderfully talented forward, Hamilton-born McCluskey combined an elegant first touch with great vision and a thunderous shot and these talents allowed him to score some truly memorable goals. He made his debut on 1st October 1975 when he came on as a substitute and scored as Celtic defeated FC Valur of Reykjavik 7-0 in the European Cup Winners Cup at Parkhead. His obvious talent made him a favourite with the supporters and his place in Celtic folklore is cemented as a member of the team which won the League Championship in such dramatic fashion in 1979 when the Bhoys secured the title with ten men at Parkhead as they came from behind to defeat Rangers 4-2. At his best McCluskey was a supreme forward with the talent to trouble any defender, as his goals in the European Cup against the likes of Ajax and Real Madrid proved. He also played an important role in Billy McNeill’s Celtic side of the early 1980’s which won back to back titles. For all his talent though some critics believed McCluskey didn’t score enough goals for a Celtic striker and at a time when the Hoops had an abundance of attacking options McNeill himself often preferred the more aggressive style of Frank McGarvey to George’s elegance. No matter, in the 1981-82 season he finished as the leading goalscorer in the Scottish Premier League, scoring a total of twenty-one League goals. He scored seventy-eight goals in two hundred and four games at Parkhead, with fifty-four in one hundred and ten starts and thirty-five from the bench in Scottish League games, twelve in eighteen Scottish Cup ties, of which four were as a substitute, eleven in twenty-five starts and seven fom the bench in Scottish League Cup ties and five in thirteen European games. After a fall out with the club over his salary, while the board of the time may be accused of under-valuing McCluskey’s abilities, no such accusation can be made of the supporters, who still remember him fondly to this day, he joined Leeds for £161,000 on 26th July 1983. Despite his natural ability, he lacked consistency at Elland Road and found it hard to adapt to the English game after such a successful time in Scotland with Celtic and in June 1986 he signed for Hibernian. He made his debut on 9th August 1986 in a 2-1 win over Rangers at Easter Road in the Scottish League and scored his first goal for Hibernian in a 4-1 away win at Hamilton Academical in the Scottish League on 4th October 1986. While at Easter Road, he scored sixteen times in eighty-three League appearances, of which twenty-two were as a substitute. He also scored once in the Scottish League Cup in seven appearances, of which five were as a substitute, and had five games in the Scottish Cup, two being from the bench, without scoring, before he left Hibs for Hamilton Academicals in September 1989 for £35,000. After scoring thirty-four goals in ninety-five League appearances, four of which were as a substitute, he was freed in May 1992, and he joined Kilmarnock a couple of months later and played his part in Killie being promoted to the Premier League. He was appointed player-coach in August 1994, but two months later he was transferred to Clyde. He scored thirteen times in fifty-seven League appearances, ten of which were as a substitute, for Kilmarnock. In his time at Clyde he made thirty-five League appearances, of which twelve were as a substitute, and scored eight goals. He later played for Baillieston and he is now a community coach for Celtic and is also part of their matchday hospitality team. He lives in Uddingston, sold fork lift trucks and drove taxis in Glasgow.

League 57/1616
F.A. Cup 40
League Cup 5/31
Full Members’ Cup 10