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Eddie Crossan (rip)


rover_groo
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Former Blackburn Rovers and Northern Ireland star Eddie Crossan, who made over 300 appearances for the club, sadly passed away on Tuesday 13th June, 2006 at the age of 80.

Eddie made his debut for Blackburn on 31 January 1948 in the 4-3 victory over Sunderland at Ewood Park. His first goal for the club came the following week and the wee man went on to score 98 goals for the club

An inside forward, with mercurial talents, Eddie produced his highest goal tally of 18 in the 1954-55 season, which included his first Rovers hat-trick in the 4-1 victory over Rotherham at Ewood Park in October. He also scored the opener in the 8-3 home win against Bristol Rovers in February that season, when Tommy Briggs netted the other seven, and hit a brace in Rovers biggest ever Ewood victory (9-0) against Middlesbrough on 6 November 1954.

Eddie died peacefully in hospital after battling with illness and his funeral was held today (16/06/06) in the local chapel. He is predeceased by his late wife and also his nine children and footballing brother Jobbie.

I would like to place a small tribute for Eddie Crossan.

Eddie was a player who i never witnessed playing a game of football, but one whom i had heard so much about within the folklore of Northern Ireland especially LondonDerry and also from a few people of Blackburn.

"I was introduced to Eddie back in 2001 and from that moment his character never changed from other meetings. He was a typical next-door neighbour, extremely modest and overwhelmed in the fact that a Blackburn fan was looking to talk to him. He fondly remembered his time at Blackburn and also his team-mates and held Bryan Douglas in the highest regard. He lived somewhere along the Bolton Road near to where the 'Fernhurst' is situated and recalled the odd evening with a few of his team-mates in the bar having about one or two half Guinness' and calling it a night."

"He was flattered when it was stated in a few brief biographies that any of his goals were often memorable and was partial to missing the odd close range effort. He laughed at this, but you could see clearly in his eye that he knew that this was a true fact. Further mentioning to him that most football fans expected him to achieve more from football instead of his brother Jobbie, he found it difficult to explain this, but i think I could see him talking about his own frustration either with lack of opportunity or indeed with himself. However Eddie easily turned it around to state that he enjoyed playing a good standard of football with Blackburn along with representing his country on a few occasions being the ultimate recognition but felt that he needed a change and made the short journey to Tranmere Rovers."

He went onto state that once he had the year done at Tranmere then he wanted to come back home to his beloved City. He then brought up his family of nine with his late wife and adored his grandchildren who loved heading over to visit their Grandad after School. In fairness Eddie wasn't keen on travelling and the few attempts to bring him over to Ewood Park was very politely turned down by himself. However, I think back in 2000 Blackburn Rovers arranged a trip over for him and met another flying Irishman 'Damien Duff' and was taken on a brief tour of the stadium. Until recently Eddie enjoyed going for his walks along the abandoned railway track, going for drives in his car, playing Bingo recently, but most of all spending time with his family. However his wife of over 50 years passed away about a year and a half ago after battling an illness was probably too much for him.

Thanks for all the fond memories Eddie and I leave with me the biggest regret not being able to watch you play for Blackburn and Northern Ireland. To an outstanding man, an extremely talented footballer, Rest In Peace. My thought and prayers are with his family at this very sad time.

Edited by rover_groo
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Great piece rover groo.

There are still many rovers fans alive who saw Eddie Crossan in the blue and white halves - unfortunately, I'm not one of them. I do remember the stories about him being a very skillful player. He is remembered very fondly by rovers fans who saw him play. Apparently, he was one of the very best.

Have you thought about contacting the lancashire evening telegraph, or the lancashire evening post, with you memories of him. I'd be amazed if they weren't interested.

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I saw Eddie Crossan play many,many times for Rovers and I always liked him as a player. He was in my opinion capable of playing in the first division as it was in the 50's. He was a clever goalscoring inside right, and always linked up well with his wingers and CF. He could also drop back and help out the half-backs with winning the ball and distribution. An all round good player who seemed to fit in perfectly with the Rovers and was always appreciated by the fans. He was one of the great Rovers forward line that played together for several seasons in the early 50's: Mooney, Crossan, Briggs, Quigley and Langton. Those were the days!

Thanks for the memories Eddie, and rest in peace.

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Lads thanks for the comments.

I just felt that I had to put something down as I was very saddened on this news. I heard of Eddie's passing on Thursday evening and it was just too late to go to the funeral on Friday morning with work committments. It would be great if more users, like 'Fife Rover' could add further comments. I wil print this off and send it onto the family in a week or so.

Again many thanks lads for posting your comments on this very sad occasion and as 'Ribblesdale' quite rightly said, he was one of us. RIP Eddie.

Edited by rover_groo
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Eddie Crossan was before my time.

Here's an extract from Mike Jackman's book, Blackburn Rovers - The Official Encyclopedia.

CROSSAN, Edward

Inside-forward. 1947-1957

5ft 6in; 10st

Born. Londonderry, 17th Nov. 1925

Appearances: Football league 287; FA Cup 15; Total 302

Goals: League 73; FA Cup1; Total 74.

Eddie Crossan was a gifted Irishman who graced Ewood Park in the 1950’s and who, with greater dedication, would surely have won more than three international caps. The mercurial Crossan possessed incredible natural ability and quickly became a favourite with the Blackburn public. His brilliant close control enabled him to mesmerise opponents with his silky skills. Yet, sadly, Crossan was a flawed diamond. As with so many other brilliant individualists, lack of consistency proved to be his Achilles’ heel.

Although he scored 73 League goals , many of them outstanding efforts, Crossan is still remembered as the man who missed most frequently from close range. Whatever his flaws, Crossan revelled in the most successful forward line that the club has ever produced. He left the club in 1957, when age was beginning to blunt his skills and played for Tranmere Rovers for a season before returning to his native Ireland.

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