A FOOTIE-mad fan will abandon a family holiday in America and travel back to Scotland for just 24 hours to watch the Scottish Cup Final.
Hearts fanatic Allen Perriss, from Edinburgh, is planning to leave his wife and children behind in the 85 degree heat of Orlando, in order to make the 8,000 mile round trip to spend the afternoon watching the all Edinburgh match.
The 45-year-old will almost immediately jet back to re-join his family after the cheering on his team at Hampden Stadium.
Mr Perriss, who replaced a family portrait above his mantel piece with a signed Hearts shirt by Rudi Skacel, said watching the match was as important as being at the birth of his kids.
The 17-hour journey was written into his two week break just hours after Hearts last minute penalty led to the first all-Edinburgh cup final in a century.
He said: “I thought early in the season that we had no chance of getting to the Scottish Cup Final and booked a holiday for my family and neighbour’s family for mid-May.
“When that penalty was given against Celtic in the last minute of the semi-finals I was thinking, ‘He’s bound to miss this’.
“I was supporting them 100 percent but there was a moment where I thought, ‘Craig Beattie could end up costing me a lot of money – I was always going to come back for a Hearts v Hibs Cup final. So when he scored I was delighted, but then came the realisation that it was going to cost me.”
The father-of-two from Baberton, said his attendance at the match was a no-brainer.
He said: “I couldn’t not go. It’s something fundamental within, like being there for the birth of you kids.
The father-of-two added: “A Cup Final against Hibs is a different ball game, it’s the biggest derby we have ever had. I’m not too bothered if we play a good game as long as we win.
Mr Perriss has been a regular at Tyncastle for more than 30 years and said his wife fully supported his decision to fly back.
He said: “Of course my missus is absolutely delighted. We are booked in to swim with dolphins that weekend which is supposed to be a highlight of the holiday so I’m missing that as well.”
The flights have cost him £700, on top of the thousands already spent on the family’s vacation. Mr Perriss said he would be extremely disappointed if Heart’s were not victorious on the day.
He said: “I will be a bit hacked off but I’m not thinking about that right now. No doubt my Hibs-supporting mates would have a wee bit of a laugh at my expense.
“There will be time for reflection on the flight on the way home – a bit of time to sort out my priorities.
“Problem is that there is going to be free drink on the plane back to the US. My wife is worried I might not make my connections.”