Time has come for new heroes

Colin O'Neill with his greatest ever Motherwell team award for the club's best goal. PT13-239.
Colin O'Neill with his greatest ever Motherwell team award for the club's best goal. PT13-239.

MOTHERWELL legend Colin O’Neill is delighted to be remembered as part of the 1991 Scottish Cup winning side, but says it is time for new heroes.

Injury restricted O’Neill to a cameo appearance in the final against Dundee United 20 years ago and is grateful to manager Tommy McLean for allowing him a place in history.

He said: “Tommy admitted he let his heart rule his head when he put me on the bench, but I was just thankful that it allowed me to get my hands on a cup winners medal.

“During the game Tom Boyd got injured, but due to my own injury I could only have lasted for about ten minutes so he had to stay on and I was pleased just to get a few minutes at the end.”

Now back in his native Belfast, O’Neill believes interest in the final is as strong there as on this side of the Irish Sea.

He said: “People are always coming up and asking me about the cup final and the youngsters I coach are all well aware of it.

“I’m honoured to always be remembered and associated with the cup win. However I do think it’s about time for a new generation to become heroes.”

O’Neill has backed the current side to emulate the 1991 side and told them to take advantage of Celtic’s SPL disappointment.

He said: “I have a wee feeling that Motherwell will win. All the pressure will be on Celtic, especially after their disappointment in the league.

“Stuart McCall has done well as manager so far and I’m sure he’ll have the boys pumped up to go out and have a real go.”

Full story in May 19 edition of Times & Speaker