NOT only am I stealing a wage from the paper but I’ve also managed to secure myself a job on Go Radio two nights a week!

I wasn’t sure at first but they were very persuasive as they said I was best-looking man for the job. If you want to hear a guy who plays for Peterhead having the cheek to slaughter top players while stuttering and using the wrong words to do so, then it’s definitely the show for you.

I somehow manage to talk even more guff than I do in here every Saturday. One of the perks of the job is that I’m on with Barry Ferguson, who is nothing like the constantly angry ned character he has been portrayed as in the past.

The only time I’ve seen him angry is when he spilled Buckfast on his Berghaus jacket while raving to the tunes with his staffy.

I’m joking, of course. I can’t wait to get in early to sit and listen to him before we go on air. When I first started the job I imagined these chats would consist of tales of big games and fights he had both on and off the pitch. Instead, the conversation is fine wines, food and high-end moisturiser.

Who’d have thought Barry prefers battering his face with expensive creams more than battering Celtic players and Paul Le Guen?


As I’ve said, he’s nothing like I imagined he would be and has absolutely no ego about him at all, as demonstrated by the Primark clobber he regularly swaggers in wearing.

In all honesty, he’s a top man who likes a laugh and doesn’t take himself too seriously. Good thing, too – if he did he would have flung me about several times by now.

Instead, he regularly brings me in bottles of wine as a thank you for making him sound clever every Monday and Friday night.

He’s adamant that you need to treat the wine the same way you treat his assistant manager Bob Malcolm after a 30-second run: let it breathe for 40 mins. I’m more than happy to wait, although he’s disgusted with my routine of having 4 blue WKDs while I do so.

Fergie’s not only doing the radio but he’s one of a few big names who have the love and bottle to go and manage at a lower league club. I love that about him as he sees himself as the same as the guys he’s coaching. I don’t think the boys would see it the same and might have been intimated when they seen Fergie’s big motor in the car park. I’m sure that would have eased as they seen his assistant’s ice cream van parked next to it.

Boab was Barry’s assistant at Clyde and is not only a good coach but he’s good for keeping morale up with the boys. His finest hour was during a session where he sneaked out and let the tyres down on Paul Slane’s only mode of transport: his BMX.

I don’t know if he took the nozzle out – or just sat on the seat – but the tyres were flatter than Paul without three cans of Monster in the morning. The boys took great delight in driving by the funniest man in Scottish football walking home to Finnieston from Toryglen.

I think Fergie having to deal with the likes of Slaney at Clyde has stood him in good stead on the characters you come across at part-time level. Fergie put the madman on for the last five minutes of a game and barely two minutes in heard young Paul asking the ref how long there was to go.


Life in the lower leagues is a constant learning curve and he has assured me that because of these experiences, he’s calmed it down to a riot on the side of the pitch. I’ve no doubt he will do well at the lower level and in years to come will go on to be a top manager as his knowledge and high standards is something that Scottish football desperately needs.

There are a few massive names who haven’t quite managed to do so well at lower league level, though.

My favourite story of a big name taking over lower down the pyramid comes from my mate Ricky Holmes, who I played with at Portsmouth. Ricky was a good lad from Essex who I got close to mainly down to our love of a day/night/weekend out, but we also bonded over our shared love of legendary players coming to our previous clubs and treating us like dog mess on the bottom of their very expensive shoes.

He was at Barnet when who else but the Dutch legend Edgar Davids rocked up as player/manager. Although 39 and speccy, he also happened to be a tremendous midfielder in his heyday where he bossed the midfield at giant clubs such as Ajax, Juventus and Barcelona.

Given his stature in the game, it came as a massive shock down south when he was given the hot seat at the Bees. I played against his team before he was appointed and I’ve no doubt those famous glasses would have steamed up pretty quickly once he seen the boys in action. There must have been a question in his head as to whether his team Barnet or his rascal dreadlocked barnet was going to get more stick in League Two that season. He came up with a great idea: he would base everything around his only outstanding player – himself.

It started to get weird pretty quickly when the pitbull took the decision to take the No. 1 jersey off the goalkeeper! He followed that up by taking the captain’s armband, putting himself on free-kicks, corners and penalites, with the occasional goal kick thrown in for good measure.


“The best and most important player should always wear No.1,” Edgar told the boys in his best Steve McLaren accent. If alarm bells weren’t ringing in the players’ heads at this stage then the first few sessions would have had them louder than the orange-tinted Gregory’s favoured by their manager.

Most drills were run-throughs on how the team could get the manager on the ball. One day the ball goes to full-back Barry Fuller, who was a Barnet legend. The gaffer drops deep from  midfield to get on it but Barry sees a striker making a great run, and fires the ball into the channel where the No. 9 latches on to it.

Just as he’s about to turn and head for goal, a whistle blows. “What is this?” screams an angry Dutchman. He walks over to Barry and shouts, “What are you doing? You’re meant to pass to me!”

 Barry isn’t the shy type and bites back that he’d seen the striker make a run and thought he was the better option. He then asks if he’s only to pass to the manager.

I’ll never forget the reply that sent a torrent of tears streaming down my chubby cheeks when Ricky piped up, impersonating the Dutch maestro.

“Yeeeeeesh, I’m Edgar f*****g Davids! This is some high-level s**t I’m teaching you here! What is this, kindergarten?”

As luck would have it, it was kindergarten with most of the boys and Edgar looking like they were running in the sandpit most Saturdays. For a play piece, the boys would be fed soup and sandwiches while the gaffer took his Nando’s black card for free chicken and chips.

It soon turned into a class with a supply teacher as Edgar announces that he won’t be travelling to away matches outwith a certain distance of London. As if he hadn’t missed enough games, he then goes and gets sent off three times in five matches while playing centre-half. They’re inevitably relegated to the Conference, and the school bell rings mercifully to bring Edgar’s time at Barnet to a close.