Scotland Under-19 Head Coach recalls his time at Fellows Park...
DESPITE his disappointment at seeing his Scotland Under-19 side go down to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Montenegro, Ricky Sbragia, was happy to be back in Walsall.
The experienced Head Coach served The Saddlers as a robust central defender for almost two years between 1978 and 1980, during which time he appeared 84 times and played in all but one of our games during the promotion-winning campaign of 1979/80.
“It wasn’t exactly a return to familiar surroundings because the club played at Fellows Park during my days here,” said the likeable 58 year-old. “But it was nice to bring my team to an area that I remember well from my own playing days.
“I remember Walsall being a close-knit, friendly club that looked after you well. There was a bond between the players and the supporters liked to see players who went out there and gave their all for the cause.
“It was an eye-opener for me at first because I was a young lad who suddenly went from playing reserve team football at Birmingham City to being in the first-team at Walsall.
“I’d like to think that I adapted pretty quickly and that promotion-winning campaign was special, particularly as I played in virtually every game that season.
“I ended up leaving that summer and, in hindsight, maybe I should have hung around a bit longer, but you make these decisions for all the right reasons at the time.
“We had some good lads here in those days, people like Tony Macken, Dave Serella and Roy McDonough. They were happy times.
“I still bump into a few of the lads from time-to-time, but we’re all getting older now! I still speak to Greeny [Ron Green] and Roy [McDonough]; they are great characters and that’s what made life at Fellows Park so special.”