IT’S been a big summer for some of the star players on the books at Parkhead and Ibrox. Just about every day some European club with deep pockets are getting linked with moves for Glasgow’s finest.
I must admit, it’s not something I can relate all that much to. Hearing Dundee were after me was great and all but it’s no quite the same as hearing that AC Milan want to sign you up.
Rangers’ Ryan Kent and Alfredo Morelos have had their fair share of headlines this summer with clubs from all over the place apparently ready to pounce. Across the other side of Glasgow, rumours linking Odsonne Edouard, Olivier Ntcham and Kris Ajer with moves elsewhere just won’t go away. These boys must have some agents.
All five have all turned up in Scotland and showed their quality and are quite rightly being sought after by some big clubs.
It must be amazing to be playing for such massive teams and still have other ones wanting to double your money to take you away. I’m just off the phone to the Daily Record, who’ve offered me 60 quid a column, so I’m pretty much in the same boat right now.
It must be hard not to have your head turned when your agent is telling you 40 and 50 thousand pounds a week is on the table. I forced a move from Dundee to Peterhead for 40 and 50 quid a week so I think I’ve got a pretty good idea of what it’s like.
I had a terrible first year at Dundee with only myself to blame as I waddled my way through an SPL season. I was more interested in prank texting the manager and the physio than actually earning my keep. My old man spent his entire working life in the city and compared to what he was getting, I felt like a millionaire.
That said, I went away in the summer embarrassed at what I’d given to the Dundee public. I’ve ate food in Lochee high street that was served up with less of a brass neck.
That summer I decided I wasn’t going to have a holiday and instead run all the way through the off-season to make sure I could sleep at night in the months ahead.
I came back in great nick and was up the top for all the runs in pre-season. Myself and Kevin Thomson still talk about it now, how well we played together in pre-season over in Budapest and how I managed to behave myself off the field. For the first time in ages, the staff had no reason to hate me. I was a changed man. Tremendous!
I was so looking forward to the first game of the season. I was like a dug eating beetroot waiting for the manager to announce his team the day before the season opener. This was going to be my year. I could feel it.
But I was on the bench. My head went and I probably ate even more than Greg Stewart on the journey back to Glasgow, which takes some doing.
I knew that the manager had lost trust in me and that my time at Dundee was up. To be fair, he was right. We bashed Kilmarnock with a very full but nonetheless outstanding Greg Stewart tearing them apart.
I got 13 minutes at the end, which meant I got the 450 quid win bonus. Knowing I’d made my mind up and I wanted to leave, I made a point of announcing I’d robbed another 450 of the club while walking on the team bus.
Unfortunately for me, the fitness coach was wired up like an FBI informant, with everything I said getting passed on straight away to the gaffer.
It might sound horrible but these are the things that go on when you know a club want you out the door. I think that was my last game for Dundee.
I was pulled in the office the Monday morning to be told I should find a new club. I said I was more than happy with going to Fat Sam’s and that I didn’t think Liquid was as good. Sadly for me, it turned out Paul Hartley was talking about football and not my first love going out up the toon.
Talking of the toon, I’d already been speaking to Blue Toon at Peterhead and knew that it would be part-time for me due to my embarrassing performances at Dundee.
It took a two-minute meeting with the chief executive and a phone call to the PFA to sort out an agreement to leave, and my place as one of the worst players to ever play for the club was enshrined.
Anyway, back to the boys at Celtic and Rangers. If they do go on to leave Glasgow in the next couple of weeks, it should be on good terms as all five have been as good for their clubs as their clubs have been for them.
It’s no surprise when diddies like me get the boot but these boys are top players. Take it from me: you never want to leave on bad terms.