I remember when Stewart McKimmie held aloft the same trophy back in 1995 and to see Russell Anderson – a great captain and loyal player – do the same yesterday was brilliant. Unfortunately the game was anything but brilliant, and the opposition had decided to stifle any enjoyment from the game with their defensive tactics. You could smell the extra time and penalties coming from around the hour mark onwards.
Let’s not take anything away from the Dandies though because over the competition they more than proved themselves capable of success and were the better team yesterday – but it’s only a start and it’s a platform that the team, management and board must build on if they are to continue to challenge at the top of the Scottish game. With second in the league and another final both strong possibilities then they must be looking to consolidate on this success next season by adding to the squad over the summer transfer market – a place in Europe will help that battle.
My favourite part about yesterday was the fans and the way they got behind the team – that display as the teams came out was outstanding and those behind it should take great credit for the organisation. Even the Caley fans were impressed! The positivity and atmosphere were great in the city in the lead up to the match from the statues showing their support to the general warmth around the town towards the team. It would be great to have this experience more often and that’s down to the football club to deliver the opportunities.
It’s not a case of pissing on anyone’s chips here but a reality call that we need to ensure that this is not a one off with another two decades of waiting until the next one. I hope that McInnes and his team continue with the positive and realistic approach they have instilled in the players and continue to build. Without Hayes and Pawlett yesterday the team was substandard and we can’t rely on just two young players to carry the team.
Overall it’s the jinx broken, the cup hoodoo is gone and it’s up to all involved to ensure that we collect more silverware in the coming months and years and bring back that positive attitude we’ve seen this week on a more regular basis.