Where Are They Now?: Don Masson

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THE international career of the former Scotland captain, Don Masson, was notable for two significant penalties.

The first, converted, spurred Scotland to the 2-0 victory over Wales at Anfield by which they qualified for the World Cup finals in 1978. The other, missed, preceded a defeat against Peru in their opening game in Argentina from which Scotland's campaign never recovered.

A wing-half renowned for brilliant passing, Masson spent his club career in England, the larger part with Notts County, who he served in two spells before retiring in 1982. After a brief period as player-manager of Kettering Town, he then ventured to America, helping to establish the shortlived Western Alliance League, but returned to Nottingham.

Today, aged 48, while keeping fit by playing tennis almost daily, he runs the Gallery Hotel in Radcliffe Road, a short walk from both Meadow Lane and the City Ground, with his second wife, Brenda. 'We were very fortunate in that we were able to get married, sell our own houses and buy this place within the space of six weeks,' he said. It has been their home for five years.

'We look after a broad range of guests and they include many people from sport - players from Forest and County, and cricket umpires. Alan Ormrod, the coach at Trent Bridge, stayed with us for six months.'

Masson suffered personal tragedy nine years ago when his first wife, Margaret, died at the age of only 39. He sought comfort in religion and is now an active member of Christians in Sport.

'My life was changed and I am lucky to have been given a second chance. My football career was a boyhood dream come true, but I am fulfilled and happy with what I have now.'

(Photograph omitted)