THE LAST time Arbroath faced Celtic is remembered for all the wrong reasons as the Lichties went down 9-1 – their heaviest defeat ever!
But one player that night at least has a happy memory of that game 19 years ago.
Local man Kevin Tindal, who had two spells at the club between 1988 and 1993 and 1998 to 2000, and was a member of the promotion winning team in 1999 / 2000, season scored the one.
Tindal, who wasn’t unfamiliar to being on the scoresheet during his time at Arbroath netting 22 times in 164 appearances for the Lichties, told us: “I remember it being a midweek game and there were only two substitutes in those days, myself and Philip Hindson.
“Frank McAvennie had scored a hat-trick, then Andy Payton came on and he also got a hat-trick.
“I came on when we were 8-0 down, promptly got booked and then we went 9-0 down, but I remember feeling fortunate to be on the park with players of that calibre.”
The former Gayfield favourite remembers the goal vividly. “Craig Martin made a bombing run forward from the halfway line. I was screaming for the ball and he did what I would probably have done and had a shot,” he said.
“I think the ball broke off Mike Gallagher, went right across the goal and Pat Bonner dived the opposite way. I was about 10 to 12 yards and I got there first ahead of Darius Wdowczk to score.”
It’s a massive task for the current crop of players to go to Parkhead and get a result, but Tindal says belief is key.
“We played Arbroath in pre-season when they were just building, then I watched them against Inverurie a few weeks ago. The players must go there believing they can get something, all the pressure is on Celtic,” he commented.
“One thing Arbroath do have is that they always look like they can score a goal. If they can keep it tight and don’t concede early, then the longer it goes they will get more confident and the crowd will begin to get uneasy.
“In saying all of that though it’s never easy going to play against players of that stature. It’s something many of the players will never have experienced.
Tindal (41) is now the manager of Highland League side Cove Rangers and it is an experience he is enjoying hugely.
“It is something totally different. I’ve not played for the last two seasons. It’s not as enjoyable as playing but I still have the involvement. When you’re a player, Saturday at 5 p.m. it’s finished. As a manger, win, lose or draw, you are always planning for the next game,” he revealed.
“I always thought I would have an involvement. I played as long as I could until I was 39 and always thought I had something to offer as a coach, assistant or manager.”
And does he see himself managing in the Scottish League one day? “I don’t see why not. I’m ambitious and the club is ambitious. They want to get into the Scottish League and I would love to take them there.”