BY IAIN COLLIN – @CCP_Sport
Sandy Clark admits winning the League One title and promotion back to the Championship would be a fitting and poignant way for Dunfermline to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the tragic death of the iconic Norrie McCathie.
Clark, the Dunfermline number two, was a team-mate of McCathie’s during a spell as a player at East End Park and subsequently attended McCathie’s funeral following the Pars captain’s untimely passing from carbon monoxide poisoning in 1996.
The Fifers this week unveiled a series of events to help mark the two decades since the devastating incident involving the defender and girlfriend Amanda Burns.
A special strip, replicating the blue and red one McCathie wore in his final game for the club, has been commissioned, whilst an exhibition at the club’s ground and a night involving former team-mates and footage from his career are also planned for the anniversary on January 8.
And Clark, who played four games for the Pars before hanging up his boots in 1990, believes a championship triumph would be another suitable tribute to a club legend known as ‘Mr Dunfermline’.
He said: “I played with Norrie and was actually at his funeral, although I had been away from the club for quite a while by the time he had passed away.
“Everything they say about Norrie is absolutely right – he was a great guy and a great captain at Dunfermline, and a real leader on the pitch. It was a tragedy what happened.
“It’s great and right that the club are recognising that with the anniversary coming up, and I’m sure the fans will appreciate it.
“There are lots of reasons why we want to win the league and there’s no doubt that the 20th anniversary for Norrie would certainly be one of them.
“Hopefully we will do that for him.”
Meanwhile, Clark believes Dunfermline will have to deal with opponents treating them as a major scalp if they are to meet their aims this season.
The Pars were knocked off top spot in League One at the weekend when they could only earn a goalless draw from their Fife derby against Cowdenbeath at Central Park.
That allowed Ayr United to leapfrog them back to the summit by a point ahead of tomorrow’s encounter with Peterhead at East End Park.
Clark added: “I think it’s fair to say that every time we play it’s almost like a cup final to the opposition. We’re the big fish in the smaller sea.
“They get a lift, especially when teams come to East End. They love the pitch, it’s a great stadium and there’s a decent crowd. Tat’s something we need to deal with.
“But we want to kick on from last Saturday, from dropping points to Cowdenbeath, and pick up again and try and get three points.”