Celtic Player of the Day – Tosh McKinley…
For Tosh McKinlay, it was a case of better late than never as far as signing for Celtic was concerned…
Tommy Burns made a few shrewd signings as manager and none more so than Tosh McKinlay. Tommy signed Tosh for a bargain £350,000 in November 1994 just a month short of his 30th birthday.
Tosh started out his career with Celtic but failed to make the grade before spending the majority of his career with Dundee and Hearts. It was his performances for the Edinburgh side that persuaded Tommy to grant McKinlay his dream of playing for his boyhood heroes.
It delighted the majority of the Celtic supporters as they knew Tosh was a big Celtic man and more importantly he was a fine player. Some were surprised that Tosh wasn’t a Celtic player long before then.
It didn’t take Tosh long to make his mark in the side and within six months he lifted his first trophy with the club as we beat Airdrie to win the Scottish cup. Our first honour in six years, with Tosh providing one of his trademark assists for Pierre Van Hoojidonk for what proved to be the only goal of the game.
Big Pierre benefited more than a few times from Tosh’s wonderful assists, he had a wand of a left foot and his crosses were his trademark, he really was a great player who always gave one hundred and ten percent in a Celtic shirt.
Tosh eventually left the club in 1998 but not before sampling a league title win in 1998, the title that stopped the dreaded ten. Tosh didn’t play much that season, in fact he spent a few games on loan at Stoke City but still managed five games under Wim Jansen and was present when the title was clinched which I’m sure he loved dearly!
That season in one of those incidents that happens on training grounds up and down the country, Tosh clashed with one of his own teammates and that resulted in front page news with the Celtic support being outraged as the player in question on the receiving end of Tosh’s enthusiasm was not other than Henrik Larsson. The Sweden international though could always look after himself and the incident was quickly forgotten. Have a look at this photograph of Henrik below taken shortly after the clash.
Tosh McKinlay lived the dream when he perhaps thought his chance was gone, a case of better late than never. And he is still employed at Celtic today, working with the players and interacting with supporters at various events wherever he’s needed, most recently up at Dundee where he met up with Albert Kidd and Matthew Marr of this parish.
Just an Ordinary Bhoy