Hall of Fame - Cox
The English dictionary defines “legend” as a story handed down from generation to generation and all Dundee supporters have been told the story of Bobby Cox from their fathers or grandfathers. There can be no doubt he is a Dundee Football Club Legend.
Bobby Cox was born overlooking Dens Park and was educated at nearby SS Peter and Paul then St. Johns playing for their football teams hoping to become a professional footballer. He overcame great adversity to achieve that aim having his leg in plaster for four years at the age of 11 following a serious injury.
Bobby was signed up with local juniors Dundee Osborne when he was called up to the Royal Signals unit stationed at Rippon West Yorkshire. Playing for the Army Northern Command team he moved from his usual position of left-half and moved to full-back and was recommended to Dundee manager Willie Thornton. Initially he signed as a part-time professional in 1955 and a year later after only four reserve games he was given his debut at home to Queens Park. The story of a legend had begun.
Bobby was an almost ever present in the side for the next decade only missing out for injuries to his cartilage and slipped disc. He was given the honour of taking over the club captaincy from Doug Cowie and thus leading the club into its finest hour at Muirton Park on 28th April 1962. The club had lost the League title on the last day of the 1948/49 season but under his captaincy there would be no mistake against St. Johnstone this time and Bobby was raised on the shoulders of the dark blue support after the 3-0 defeat of St. Johnstone.
That League championship brought qualification to the European Cup and Bobby led the team on the brilliant aggregate defeats of Cologne, Sporting Lisbon and Anderlecht. Injury against Motherwell ruled him out against AC Milan in the semi-finals and robbed Dundee of one of its most influential players. Bobby would experience further European ties in the European Cup Winners Cup and Fairs City Cup.
In 1964, whilst owner of the aptly named public house “The Sliding Tackle” in Broughty Ferry, he once again captained the team to yet another memorable game in our history. Dundee played Rangers in the Scottish Cup Final on 25th April 1964, their first appearance at that stage of the tournament for 12 years. After a brave and heroic display from Bert Slater the Dark Blues were cruelly denied a replay by two late goals from Rangers.
To have been an established member and captain of at one stage the best team in the country then it is disappointing to record that Bobby did not receive the recognition of his country. His only representative honour was for a Scottish League XI against the Scotland national side at Parkhead in 1961. He was named as a reserve on no fewer than 12 occasions but was repeatedly overlooked for that elusive cap.
Bobby retired in 1969 after 14 years with club but the association would not stop there for this one club man and through his hosting of the hospitality lounges at Dens he had given the club a loyal service for over 50 years. The generations of Dundee support know Bobby Cox and what he did for their club. Their unofficial honorary knighthood meant a warm welcome to Sir Bobby Cox into the Hall of Fame.
Then Bobby died in 2010 the stands at Dens resounded to one last round of deafening applause for the man who most epitomised what it means to play for or follow the club.