Trisha Shetty (Editor)

Kilmarnock F.C.

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit

Interim manager
Lee McCulloch

Lee McCulloch


Ground Capacity

Club home page

Rugby Park

Scottish Premiership

Kilmarnock F.C. httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediaenthumb3

Full name
Kilmarnock Football Club

Scottish Premiership, 11th

Training ground
Kilmarnock Football Club Training Ground

Kilmarnock, United Kingdom


Kilmarnock Football Club, commonly known as Killie, is a Scottish football team based in the town of Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire. Lee McCulloch is the interim manager of the side, after Lee Clark left in February 2017. The club has won many honours since its formation in 1869, most recently the 2011–12 Scottish League Cup after a 1–0 win over Celtic at Hampden Park.


The club have qualified for European competitions on nine occasions, their best performance coming in the 1966–67 Fairs Cup when they progressed to the semi-finals, eventually being eliminated by Leeds United. The club is also one of only a few Scottish clubs to have played in all three European competitions (European Cup, Cup Winners' Cup and the UEFA Cup).

Killie is the oldest football club in the Scottish Premiership, and are also the oldest professional club in the country. Home matches are played at Rugby Park, an 17,889 capacity all seater stadium situated in the town itself. Kilmarnock took part in the first ever official match in the Scottish Cup against the now defunct Renton in 1873.

Formation & early years

The club's foundation dates back to the very earliest days of organised football in Scotland, when a group of local cricketers looking for a sporting pursuit to occupy them outside of the cricket season looked to form a football club. On 5 January 1869 the club was founded during a general meeting at Robertson's Temperance Hotel on Portland Street. Originally they played a game more similar to rugby and these origins are reflected to this day by the name of the club's home ground – Rugby Park. The difficulty in organising fixtures under this code and the growing influence of Queen's Park soon persuaded them to adopt the association code instead. At this time, the club played games in a number locations including Holm Quarry, the Grange on Irvine Road and a location close to the current Rugby Park.

Following the formation of Scotland's earliest football clubs in the 1860s, football experienced a rapid growth but there was no formal structure, and matches were often arranged in a haphazard and irregular fashion.

Queen's Park, a Glasgow club founded in 1867, took the lead, and following an advertisement in a Glasgow newspaper in 1873, representatives from seven clubs – Queen's Park, Clydesdale, Vale of Leven, Dumbreck, Third Lanark, Eastern and Granville – attended a meeting on 13 March 1873. Furthermore, Kilmarnock sent a letter stating their willingness to form the Scottish Football Association.

That day, these eight clubs formed the Scottish Football Association, and resolved that: The clubs here represented form themselves into an association for the promotion of football according to the rules of The Football Association and that the clubs connected with this association subscribe for a challenge cup to be played for annually, the committee to propose the laws of the competition.

Kilmarnock also competed in the inaugural Scottish Cup tournament in 1873–74. Their 2–0 defeat against Renton in the First Round on 18 October 1873 is thought to have been the first match ever played in the competition.

Kilmarnock joined the Scottish League in 1895 and after winning consecutive Second Division titles were elected to the top flight for the first time in 1899. In 1920 Kilmarnock won the Scottish Cup for the first time beating Albion Rovers at Hampden. This was followed soon by their second success in 1929 where the beat massive favourites Rangers 2–0 at the national stadium in front of a crowd of 114,708 people.

Late 20th century

The club's greatest success was in 1965 under the management of Willie Waddell. On the final day of the season, they travelled to face Hearts at Tynecastle requiring a victory by two goals to nil (due to the competition being decided by goal average at that period if teams were equal on points) to win the league at their opponents' expense. A memorable 2–0 win saw Kilmarnock crowned Scottish League champions for the first, and to date only, time. This capped a period of tremendous consistency which had seen them occupy runners-up spot in four of the previous five seasons.

After a period of decline in the 1980s which saw the club relegated to the Second Division, Killie have returned to prominence, holding top division status since being promoted in 1993 and lifting the Scottish Cup for the third time in 1997 thanks to a 1–0 victory over Falkirk in the final.

The club have qualified for European competitions on nine occasions, their best performance coming in the 1966–67 Fairs Cup when they progressed to the semi-finals, eventually being eliminated by Leeds United. The club is also one of only a few Scottish clubs to have played in all three European competitions (European Cup, Cup Winners' Cup and the UEFA Cup).

21st century

Kilmarnock reached the 2007 Scottish League Cup Final, but suffered a 5–1 defeat in the final by Hibernian. After selling Steven Naismith to Rangers for a club-record fee in August 2007, Killie struggled in the 2007–08 Scottish Premier League, finishing in 11th place with 40 points. In January 2010, Kilmarnock were second bottom of the 2009–10 Scottish Premier League, with last placed Falkirk just two points behind. On 11 January 2010, Jim Jefferies left the club by "mutual consent" and Jimmy Calderwood was appointed manager. Kilmarnock then achieved a first win in nine years against Celtic. Continued poor form, however, meant a final day showdown at Rugby Park with Falkirk for SPL survival. Kilmarnock began the game with a two-point advantage over their rivals and a goalless draw on the day was good enough to secure top-flight football for another year. They ended the season with just 33 points, their worst points finish in the SPL.

After Calderwood left the team at the end the season, Mixu Paatelainen was appointed manager for the next two years with an option for a third. Despite being the favourites for relegation that season, Kilmarnock finished the season in fifth position. Paatelainen left Kilmarnock to become manager of Finland and his assistant Kenny Shiels was appointed manager. Kilmarnock progressed to the 2012 Scottish League Cup Final with wins against Queen of the South, East Fife and Ayr United in an Ayrshire derby at Hampden. Kilmarnock won the League Cup for the first time, as they defeated Celtic 1–0 in the final. Dieter van Tornhout scored the only goal six minutes from time, with Cammy Bell named Man of the Match. In June 2013, after three years at Kilmarnock Football Club, manager Kenny Shiels was sacked by chairman Michael Johnston after a "mutual agreement" between the two.

Allan Johnston signed a two-year contract and was appointed manager on 24 June 2013, with Sandy Clark as the assistant manager. Sandy Clark left his role in the summer of 2014 with the club looking to go in a new direction, and ex-Killie player and former Hearts manager Gary Locke was appointed as his assistant.

Allan Johnston was sacked in February 2015 after informing the press of his intention to leave in the summer, before discussing this with the board. Gary Locke was placed in interim charge, before signing a three-year deal in April 2015. Kilmarnock went on to lose seven of their final eight games of the season, but were spared the play-off spot after a 4–1 win over Partick Thistle. Lee Clark took over in February 2016. Clark remained in the role for exactly one-year, before leaving on 15 February 2017 to become manager English League One side Bury.

Michael Johnston stood down as club Chairman in March 2015, with ex-TUI Group (German: TUI (Touristik Union International) Aktiengesellschaft) senior executive Jim Mann taking over.

Colours and badge

The earliest known Kilmarnock kit from 1879 consisted of an all blue jersey with white trousers. The shirt bore a crest which was described as "a hand, index and second fingers upright, thumb outstreached, other fingers enclosed over a palm." The hand rested on a bar over a ball marked KFC. Thereafter, the club have predominantly played in blue and white striped or hooped shirts with either blue or white shorts. The club have also occasionally played in plain blue and plain white tops, this at the time was suggested by Ross Quigley whom at the time was one of the first directors of the club, although the kit was later surpassed to the 1920 kit. The club's away colours have varied greatly over time. Yellow is generally regarded as the club's main third colour; but white, red and purple away kits have also appeared in recent years.

Between 2008 and 2014, the club manufactured their kits under their own sportswear brand, 1869. Following this, Italian company Erreá was the manufacturer. The current shirt sponsors are the locally based QTS Group with American company Nike manufacturing the kit.

The current club badge is a modernised version of previous club badges. It features a ball bearing a hand in a blessing position, flanked by two red squirrels. The club's Latin motto, confidemus (we trust), is written above the badge. The club adopted the current badge in 1993 after The Lord Lyon decreed that the previous badge, based heavily upon the town crest, was in breach of ancient Scottish heraldic rules.


Kilmarnock first played football matches at the present Rugby Park site in 1899. Despite this, the venue is actually Kilmarnock’s fourth home ground. The Grange, Holm Quarry and Ward's Park all hosted matches, before the club moved to Rugby Park in 1877. This was not the present stadium, but one situated close by near South Hamilton Street. This ground was shared by cricket and rugby teams – sports which Kilmarnock had played previously – and the connection with rugby gave the ground its name. This name was taken with the club when they moved to their present stadium.

During 1994–95 season the stadium capacity was significantly reduced as three new stands were constructed; the Moffat Stand, the Chadwick Stand and the East Stand. Their completion brought the capacity of the stadium to 17,889. The stadium opened on 6 August 1995, in a friendly match against English champions Blackburn Rovers. Mike Newell hit a hat-trick as the home team lost 5–0.

A FIFA 2 star FieldTurf artificial pitch was installed at Rugby Park for the start of the 2014–15 season. The pitch is capable of hosting rugby matches as well as football.

Ayrshire Derby

Kilmarnock's biggest rivalry is with their South Ayrshire neighbours Ayr United and together they contest in the Ayrshire Derby. The fixture has been played 255 times since their first meeting on 14 September 1910. Killie have won on 189 occasions.

Club records

  • Oldest professional club in Scotland.
  • Biggest competitive win: 13–2 v Saltcoats Victoria, Scottish Qualifying Cup 2nd Round, 12 September 1896
  • Worst defeat: 1–9 v Celtic, Scottish League Division 1, 13 August 1938
  • Highest home attendance: 35,995 v Rangers, Scottish Cup Quarter-Finals 10 March 1962
  • Most League goals in a season: Harry Cunningham (34 in 1927–28) and Andy Kerr (34 in 1960–61)
  • Transfer fee paid: £340,000 for Paul Wright from St Johnstone, March 1995.
  • Transfer fee received: £1,900,000 for Steven Naismith to Rangers, 31 August 2007.
  • First Team Squad

    As of 31 January 2017

    Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

    Out on loan

    Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

    Development Squad

    Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

    Honours and competition wins

  • Scottish Football League (first tier):
  • Winners (1): 1964–65
  • Runners-up (4): 1959–60, 1960–61, 1962–63, 1963–64
  • Scottish First Division (second tier):
  • Winners (2): 1897–98, 1898–99
  • Runners-up (6): 1953–54, 1973–74, 1975–76, 1978–79, 1981–82, 1992–93
  • Scottish Second Division (third tier):
  • Runners-up (1): 1989–90
  • Scottish Cup:
  • Winners (3): 1919–20, 1928–29, 1996–97
  • Runners-up (5): 1897–98, 1931–32, 1937–38, 1956–57, 1959–60
  • Scottish League Cup:
  • Winners (1): 2011–12
  • Runners-up (5): 1952–53, 1960–61, 1962–63, 2000–01, 2006–07
  • Scottish Qualifying Cup (1): 1896–97
  • Inter-Cities Fairs Cup:
  • Semi-finalists (1): 1966–67
  • International Soccer League:
  • Runners-up (1): 1960
  • Tennent Caledonian Cup:
  • Winners (1): 1979–80
  • UEFA Respect Fair Play ranking:
  • Winners (1): 1999
  • Club Anthem

    The song Paper Roses was adopted by Kilmarnock fans as their own club anthem. Entertainer Marie Osmond, who is famous for recording this song, surprised the fans in February 2013 and performed at Rugby Park along with a meet and greet session, signing autographs for the players and fans.


    Kilmarnock F.C. Wikipedia

    Similar Topics