I was going to put up one of the National League A-Z series up but then remembered that its May 21st and that means its 21 years since that magic day at Hampden when Christian hit the post and then Brewster hit the net! The Arabs finally, at the 7th time of asking, lifted the Scottish Cup.
For those who don't have a clue of what I'm on about..........well have a look at this.
I would have loved to be doing an I was there piece, except I wasn't. I was almost there!
In 1994 I had been at tech for 2 years, and decided that was enough, and helped by a student loan (back in the days when they gave you the money in a lump sum including the course fees) I headed for Scotland.
I was leaving a bit later than I had planned but knew I'd get a few games in before the end of the season It was only when I arrived in Amsterdam and picked up a British paper that I realised that Dundee United were into their 7th Scottish Cup final.
The other semi-final was between Kilmarnock and Rangers and I wanted Rangers to win (probably the only time I ever have), my reasoning was that Kilmarnock were too much like St Mirren or Motherwell and earlier in the season we had hammered Rangers 3-0 at Ibrox, so we could do it again couldn't we?
Rangers won and I had worked out I would be in Scotland when the cup final was on. So I sent a postcard to Roy, my Dad's best pal. Roy is a big Jambo, but is well connected so he'd be able to get a ticket for me I thought. So a couple of weeks later when I arrived at Edinburgh airport tired and disheveled after a sleepless night in Istanbul, I was met by Roy, who informed me that normally it wouldn't have been a problem, but as Hampden was being redeveloped and the capacity was reduced to 38 000, and United only had 12 000 of those and he hadn't been able to get any. He'd even tried getting one in the Rangers end! He did say I could go with him to the Hearts v Aberdeen game that evening though.........
Having accepted that I wouldn't get a ticket I decided to hitch a lift with my mum and her best pal to Skye where I was going to stay with my Aunt & Uncle. So on the Friday night we were in a pub in Tillicoultry with my mums pal and her friends, when one of then heard that I'd been trying to get a ticket for the cup final, she said
“That's a shame, because if I'd seen you on Wednesday I had a ticket to give away”
then she followed it up with
“you probably wouldn't have wanted it anyway it was for the Dundee United end” !!!!!
Cup final day came around and I was nervous, as were all United fans – all week the press had been going on and on about United's Hampden hoodoo, as this was our 7th cup final and we were yet to win.
|Ivan Golac & his magic hat|
This year was different, Jim McLean was now chairman and we had a laid back Yugoslav hippy with a magic hat called Ivan Golac as manager. He would take the players to Camperdown Park to smell the roses instead of a training run! The day before the final he took them down to the Hamilton races instead of training.
The United fanzine, The Final Hurdle, produced an issue with a suicide pill attached just in case.
Despite being promised that we'd be in Portree in time for kick off, we weren't (I put this down to my mum being a Hibee and not really understanding what a cup final is about!)
So I had to listen on the radio. At half time it we switched it off and when it got switched back on for the 2nd half the first thing I heard was “....follow up by Craig Brewster to give Dundee United the lead”, We had scored I'd missed it but I didn't care we were winning. We did get to Portree with about 30 minutes of the game left all I really remember is Jerren Nixon coming on and getting booked and then the whistle went and we had done it, the cup was finally ours!
21st May 1994
Dundee United 1 Rangers 0
ATT 37 450
Dundee United :
Guido Van De Kamp, Maurice Malpas, Gordan Petric, Brian Welsh, Jim McInally, Dave Bowman, David Hannah, Alex Cleland, Christian Daily, Andy McLaren. Subs Jerren Nixon, Gary Bolan
as the song says “They've gone down in history, we never can forget, The day that Christian hit the post then Brewster hit the net”