Win­ning ti­tle with 10 sec­onds left was in­cred­i­ble

Rutherglen Reformer - - Motors - Murray Spooner

It has been a sea­son to re­mem­ber, that’s for sure.

But Cam­bus­lang man­ager Paul McColl knows he couldn’t have won the league with­out his trusted back­room staff, the play­ers and also the fans who wit­nessed some mag­i­cal scenes.

The 2016/17 cam­paign had ev­ery­thing – a record num­ber of goals scored, an un­beaten run that shot The Lang right to the sum­mit of the Central District First Di­vi­sion, and a league tro­phy to cap off a mar­vel­lous sea­son.

And when former Cathkin High pupil McColl took the time to re­view his best sea­son as both a player and man­ager, two themes cropped up when he ran through his most mem­o­rable games. Goals, late drama and more goals.

He said: “It has been a bril­liant sea­son. I have played Ju­nior foot­ball and been at lots of teams but never won any­thing apart from pro­mo­tions.

So to win the league with your home­town club is a great feel­ing. The last day of the sea­son has to be top of the list of most mem­o­rable games [v Neil­ston]. To win the game with 10 sec­onds left on the clock was in­cred­i­ble.

“The Ross­vale match when we won 4-0 was an­other great game. That’s prob­a­bly when I knew we would go and win the league.

“When we played at Ben­burb and won 9-1, that was some day. It was the best I had ever seen them play.

“The all round mag­ni­tude of the game was prob­a­bly not as im­por­tant be­cause it was quite early in the sea­son but they blew us all away with how they played.”

Larkhall This­tle and St Roch’s pushed The Lang all the way to the end with the ti­tle even­tu­ally de­cided on goal dif­fer­ence.

The Wee Gers, who fin­ished top of the goalscor­ing charts ahead of all the teams in the west re­gion on 94, led the di­vi­sion by 10 points in March. But back-to-back de­feats against Wishaw and The Candy Rock threat­ened to de­rail their ti­tle charge.

McColl said: “We shouldn’t have lost any games. I don’t think you could say any team in the league bat­tered us. It was a few mis­takes which cost us.

“I re­mem­ber at Thorniewood when we were 3-2 down. That’s when I thought Larkhall would win the league.

“But we then got the late goal to level it, then we drew 3-3 with Forth in the next game to keep it all alive.”

The Lang gaffer hailed his coach­ing staff, Jimmy Kerr, Ge­orge Fother­ing­ham and John Duncan for their ef­forts and also thanked the fans,play­ers and spon­sors.

McColl has not of­fi­cially con­firmed he will be stay­ing on as gaffer next sea­son but hinted: “Why wouldn’t you want to stay win­ning the league?”

SAYS PAUL McCOLL

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