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Who Was The Footie Star?

Doctor Who David Tennant has done some time travelling into his own past and discovered his grandfather was a goal-machine footballer.

The Scots Timelord has signed up to appear in the next series of the BBC's genealogy hit Who Do You Think You Are?

And while going back to his roots to research his family tree he discovered that his grandfather Archie McLeod was a star of the 1930s.

A former Scotland junior international, Archie learned his trade at Partick Thistle before joining Irish club Derry City in 1934.

His signing caused a stir as Derry's 5-a-week wages were far more than most Scottish clubs could afford.

The stylish forward, renowned for his slicked-back hair, became an idol for the Irish League team.

He hit a hat-trick on his debut and went on to score an incredible 169 goals in only five seasons.

During his spell in Ireland he helped Derry lift their first major honour - the City Cup - in 1935 and smashed in a record 54 goals in the 1935/36 season.

He later returned to Glasgow to work in the shipyards and bring up his family which included David's mother Helen.

Yesterday Helen said: "I do not really remember my father as being a footballer.

"He died when I was a teenager.

"He had a career in Scotland but it was in Derry where he really made a name for himself and is most fondly remembered.

"I am not really into football but from what I heard about him he was a great goalscorer."

Last week David, 35, returned to the scene of his grandfather's triumphs as he travelled to Derry to watch the team in action.

He was spotted in several bars before making his way to Derry's Brandywell Stadium to enjoy the Candystripes' 3-0 league victory over Bray Wanderers.

Derry City chairman Jim Roddy said that the actor was very proud of his roots.

He said: "When word got out he was at the match a few of the lads got quite a shock and could not believe it.

"But he was a quiet, decent fellow who was obviously very proud of his roots.

"I think he was humbled by the whole experience."

Who Do You Think You Are? will return for its third run in the autumn on BBC1.

Tennant will follow in the footsteps of other celebrities such as Jeremy Paxman and Stephen Fry, who have all explored their pasts in previous series.

A BBC spokeswoman confirmed Tennant's involvement in the show, but said details of his research were to remain a secret.

David, of Bathgate, West Lothian is the son of former Church of Scotland moderator Rev Sandy McDonald.
Source: The Daily Star

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