D ens Park, May 3, 1986. Attendance was 19,567; tens of thousands of Others have long recognized the significance of what happened. Albert Kidd 's goals - 83 minutes, 87 minutes- refused Hearts the point needed to propel Celtic to the title. The images of men in brown shedding tears on the terraces have never really disappeared.
It will be understood that the reflections of the players of Hearts on the most painful sporting episodes are not plentiful. That will change with the imminent publication of John Robertson's long-awaited and self-written autobiography. Robertson, the club's league top scorer at 214 over two periods, was the Hearts' support darling at the time and remains revered. The poster boy carried the burden of what happened in Dundee. A week later, Hearts lost the Scottish Cup final to Aberdeen.
" This was the only section of the book that took a lottime, ”says Robertson. "It 's happened to Dens and I was wondering how the heck has it. The hardest part was this emotional aspect, trying to explain how we all felt after that game. If we had seen it. the league going out, I have relatively no doubt we would have beaten Aberdeen. In the outside Dundee dressing room, Robertson portrays tears and silence, except for one teammate who is vomiting.
"Despite the revitalization of the club, we left a lot of chances there. I lost in 10 or 11 semi-finals as well as three cup finals. The opportunities we missed as a team and missed as an individual were huge. "
It 's to ok until the Scottish Cup for Hearts 1998, including Robertson, to end a trophy wait that stretched until 1962. No club outside of the Old Firm is here. has won the elite since 1985. “It isra still there, ”says Robertson a year later. “As, to a lesser extent, 1998. From April we drew Motherwell at home, drew with St Johnstone at home, lost to Hibs, lost to Rangers, drew at Aberdeen… We have only finished seven points behind Celtic. We just needed a good break-in and we could have clinched the league. It was an opportunity; nowhere near as tall as Dens, but still lucky.
Hearts will strut towards Ibrox on Saturday, behind Rangers by one point and holding the only unbeaten Scottish Premiership record. Robertson praises Robbie Neilson and his class of 2021.
"They are united, you can see it. There is a lot of improvement in this team because they have a lot of young guys. They can get better. They play with arrogance but it 's controlled, not in front.Advent they are a decent team who, if they play well together, are as good as anyone in the league. Hearts have nothing to fear going to Ibrox's. "
Robertson, 57 and the Caledonian thistle d 'Inverness sporting director, remains one of the most well-known and contagious characters in the Scottish game. It is gratifying that his stint at Tynecastle ended in 2005, unless it was over. a full season. The Vladimir Romanov buyout meant a clean slate; Robertson was a high-profile victim. "I entered Hearts as a manager and still think I did a reasonable job under the circumstances. Good man , bad time. It impacted my career because people looked at it and said, "If Hearts gets rid of it, considering its cplayer back there, he must have a major flaw. If he arts didn't see him as a manager, why should we? '”
Robertson's incredible reminder of people and matches is evident in his book . Famously, a teenage Robertson was in the office of Hibs chairman Tom Hart and ready to sign before asking for his brother, Chris, to be allowed to review the terms. Hart - Robertson believed out of indifference to the Rangers, for whom Chris played - refused to let the unsigned contract leave the room. The business collapsed; Robertson has scored 27 times in brown in the Edinburgh derbies.
There was an earlier meeting with Brian Clough at Nottingham Forest. Clough already had a Scotsman John Robertson, used left as a No.11, and refused to let the Robertson schoolboy play as a No.9 at the center-forward in a trial. He too had to wear 11 on the left.
In 1988, at the end of an unfortunate eight-month stay in Newcastle, Ajax attempted to lure Robertson. "If that call had come four hours earlier ..." said Robertson. "I had accepted and signed the agreement to return to Hearts. If I had gone to Ajax my career would have taken a completely different direction, with or without success.
"I would have loved to have done well for the Newcastle fans, who treated me well. I always get letters from them. It just wasn't not; I didn't do myself justice. I hurt myself, needed hernia surgery, then when I got back into the squad I was left in a midfielder four.
"Jim Smith came in and was told he needed to sell players. Myself, John Hendrie, Dave Beasant and Andy Thorn were put up for sale. John immediately went to Leeds and a brawl began between theScottish clubs about me. Rangers came in at £ 500,000, Hibs, Aberdeen and Dundee United at £ 600,000. The Rangers were very interesting, Graeme Souness was there, but they weren't ready to increase their offer. When the President told me about the offers it was Rangers out of the three I wanted to talk to but the offer was too low. Wallace [Mercer, Hearts president] finally went the extra mile to get me back and the stars aligned. . Ally McCoist, Mo Johnston, Steve Archibald, Frank McAvennie and Eric Black were among those in attendance. The recent failure to produce prolific goal scorers is blatant. “It's math,” says Robertson. "If you're playing with two center-forwards, you need two back-up - think about the U-12 numbers.
Robertson was manager of 'Inverness when he received compassionate care leave in February. Her return has arrived in a new role, in theequel he immersed himself. Robertson remains upset with Scottish football's handling of the pandemic, with his Highland club facing geographic challenges.
"I sank into the ground , not sleeping and taking too much in. Three of the players' wives were pregnant, I was worried about my own family in Edinburgh. We lost my sister. Everything has been built and built. In As a manager I felt responsible for ensuring the safety of the players, staff and their families. It all caught up and it was just too much - I had to take a step back.
"They have banned players from taking showers after games. This is good for administrators based in Glasgow. The attitude I had was, "Well, it's not our fault that you're based there. They weren't interested. We had gone to Queen of the South on a Friday night, the playersrs had to get home at 3 a.m. before they could take a shower. Robertson closes his book at the end of his playing days. "There's more to come," he says with a broad smile. "Robbon II. " You have the impression that he has unfinished business.
Robbo: My autobiography is published by Black & White and released on 28 October