Dunfermline Athletic

Norrie Tribute Night - Part One

Friday, 15th Jan 2016

Part One: "it really struck home that he had something very special.

The Norrie McCathie tribute night in the Carnegie Hall on Friday 15th January brought together 20 former players, Jim Leishman, Gregor Abel, Dick Campbell, John Jobson and Pip Yeates and an audience of several hundred Pars fans.

Introduced by Steven Mill, BBC Scotland's Brian McLauchlin first interviewed Rab McCathie, the younger brother by two years of Norrie. He said there were a few boys things that they got up to some that could not be related on the night. Rab revealed that he and Norrie used a telegraph pole to scale a wall to sneak into their first football match at Easter Road.

Norrie had played at Edina Hibs before he joined Cowdenbeath. It was Pat Stanton who signed Norrie for Dunfermline and his recorded interview revealed how the deal was done with Andy Rolland who was the Cowdenbeath manager at the time:-

"When he went to Cowdenbeath he had so much enthusiasm for the game, he wanted to do well. I remember getting the call from Andy who had just taken over there. When he mentioned Norrie's name I was a wee bit surprised but he said 'remember Pat we do not have a great deal of money, would you be interested in a swap?' I said 'well who do you have in mind' and he said 'how about Craig McFarlane?'. I didn't answer Andy right away, I waited two hours before I got back to him to say 'yes if you are happy to go ahead, tell Norrie to come over.'

"Maybe Norrie didn't realise it but he was a leader. He was willing to listen and he improved by listening to people."

Former team mate and club doctor, Bobby Robertson was also on video interview shown on the large screen at the Carnegie Hall. He said:-

"First impressions of Norrie: he was an athlete, he was a good looking lad - well maybe except for the dodgy moustache. You could tell very early on that he was a player, a winner and he came to us with the reputation as a goalscorer.

"It would be fair to say that he did not hit the ground running but I remember the time in the 84-85 season in a match against Alloa when Norrie was selected to play centre half that day. A master stroke by Mr Leishman and it really struck home that he had something very special. It was so easy for him, he instinctively took up the correct positions.

"He was powerful, strong and good with his feet. His distribution was good and although he had many fantastic games for Dunfermline and lots of memories of goals he scored and tackles he made that game will live with me as I was proved right that we had somebody special here."

Lots more to follow on Saturday

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