Johnny MacKenzie was a tricky winger who joined Thistle in October 1944, as player after player was called up to help the war effort. Before he had the opportunity to play a single game for Thistle, it was his time to serve King and country, leaving Thistle scrambling for players once again. He kept up regular football with Bournemouth while serving with the Scots Guards at Windsor. He enjoyed a little success with the English side finishing runners-up in the Southern Third Division.
Johnny featured regularly for Thistle throughout the 1950s. While he wasn’t blessed with immense pace, his skill and control would tempt defenders in for a challenge before Johnny would flick the ball away down the wing. His talents were widely recognised and, in 1954, he was called up to represent Scotland at the World Cup to be played in Switzerland. The SFA didn’t help the squad that was assembled only taking 13 players when 22 were allowed. The conditions weren’t suitable for the heavy winter jerseys the squad took with them, and as a consequence the results suffered.
Johnny was part of the Thistle squad which reached three League Cup Finals, but the club would have to wait before that particular trophy arrived back to Firhill. Johnny went south to Fulham in 1958, but soon found his way back to Firhill for a second spell. He joined Dumbarton in 1960 having a spell with Derry City, where he won the only medal of his career before retiring. He joined Third Lanark as a coach in 1967, but left when the club folded later that year.
(extract taken from ‘Partick Thistle Legends’ by Niall Kennedy and Tom Hosie)