Ian St. John began his career at boyhood favourites Motherwell, where he scored one of the fastest hat-tricks on record: 2 minutes and 30 seconds, against Hibernian in 1959.
In 1961, he was purchased by Bill Shankley and transferring to Liverpool F.C. in 1961, for £37,500 more than double the previous highest transfer fee paid by the Anfield board.
Ian made his debut against local rivals Everton. Although Liverpool lost 3-4, he announced his arrival in spectacular style by scoring all 3 of his side’s goals. His contribution to the success that followed later in the decade was colossal.
He went on to score many vital goals for Liverpool, including a flying header that he put past Leed’s keeper Gary Sprake to win The FA Cup in 1965. A title Liverpool had been trying to win for 70 years.
After playing 424 games and scoring 118 goals for Liverpool, St. John was sold to Coventry City F.C. for the 1971/72 season.
He played for Coventry for just one season, before moving to Tranmere Rovers F.C. for the 1972/73 season, after which he retired.
After retiring from playing he managed both Portsmouth F.C. and his former club Motherwell F.C.
He retired from club management after leaving Portsmouth, and became a pundit.
Ian St. John made his international Scotland debut in May 1959, against West Germany. He went onto win 21 caps, and scored 9 goals
His knowledge of and passion for football, coupled with a friendly and confident personality, enabled him to break into the world of television and for several years he was a popular figure on ITV in tandem with his former international adversary Jimmy Greaves.
Ian St. John played over 400 times for Liverpool’s first-team and was without doubt one of the best buys the club ever made. At his peak he was one of the most inspired players in the country and contributed so much to Liverpool’s domination of the domestic scene in the middle of the 1960’s.