Montrose Greats - Ian Stewart
The third `player becomes manager' to feature in this column is Ian Stewart. Originally part of the mid 70's squad following a career at Dundee United, Ian started his managerial career at Brechin City where he is accredited with turning them around after a lengthy barren spell. He moved on to Gayfield narrowly missing promotion twice before being dismissed controversially in 1983. Two days later, Ian was back at Links Park where he set about transforming the club. Astute signings, new fitness regimes and lots of motivation saw Montrose come from last place in senior football to division two champions the following season ahead of Alloa Athletic and Jim Leishman's Dunfermline Athletic.
The fans rolled back to Links Park rightly acknowledging Stewart as the significant factor in their triumph. Ian went on to oversee the defeat of Hearts at Tynecastle in 1986 and his record over Arbroath during his time at Links Park is impressive.
Considering the resources available to him, Ian must rank as one of our best ever managers. He remains a Montrose fan and it's a pity he wasn't involved in the club today in some capacity.
© David Smith 2000