A new feature that we are be bringing to the BAJFC website is ‘An Interview With…’, a light hearted small insight to who the BAJFC players, management, and committee are. Our next interview is with Broughty Athletic Coach, Tony McAuley. Read below what Tony had to say when he sat down with our website admin over a shandy or two…
It’s been a lot of years since you joined your first senior football side, Forfar Athletic, back in 1989, what’s your most memorable happy moment that sticks out in your playing career during that time?
I was 15yrs old when I went down to Liverpool and Aston Villa for trials. After nothing much happening, I came home and went to Dundee FC for a while. Following that, I signed for my first senior club, Forfar athletic, when I was 17yrs old, where I stayed for 6 / 7 years. My most memorable moment was when I scored against Dundee in a 4-1 defeat in 1990 and my late father was in the Dundee end as he was a massive Dundee fan, he didn’t speak to me for a good few days after that though.
Another funny story that sticks out is when I was playing for Elgin City. We had a midweek game up in Brora. It took us something like four hours to get there as the car that I was in only done 60 mph! It was the worst journey in the world. Once the game kicked off I was sent off after one minute for a hand ball on the line!!! I went over to the ref and said to him “Listen ref, I have been in a car for four hours, without any food, and it was a crap car at that, as it only went 60mph, so can you take that into consideration, please?” His reply to me was “Off you pop… You’ll get a head start home then” After me replying to him, calling him a prick…he turned and said, “There is a good chip shop open across the road, you will get your tea there before you go…”
Did you have any game day rituals or superstitions before a match as a player and now as a coach?
No pre-match rituals as such I’m afraid from the past football days but I will admit I’m never off the toilet on match days now!!
Who was your toughest opponent be it in the Junior or Senior game and why?
That’s a hard one… I would say my toughest opponent in the senior game would have been both Tommy Burns of Celtic and Jim Bett of Aberdeen. Two great players on their day, so much so I just couldn’t get the ball off them at all.
You’ve finished your playing career and are now the club’s coach, would you rather be on the pitch playing or on the sidelines in your nice cosy warm jacket?
Hahahaha I love my new jacket I must admit, and thanks to Rab Lawson of Robert Lawson & Sons for supplying it. Sometimes I get frustrated on the sidelines during games and still think I could go on and change the game, but I am more than delighted to still be involved in the game on the sidelines as a coach with Broughty Athletic. I must take this opportunity to thank Gibby and Jinky for allowing me to do so.
What team do you support and any player that you idolized since you first knew about football?
I have always supported Dundee FC from a very young age, going to see them at Dens Park was great. I can’t say I have ever idolised anyone in particular but, I did admire greatly King Kenny Dalgleish of Liverpool, he was some player in his career. Another player that stood out for me was the one and only Paul Gascoigne, need I say any more about him.
We see you’ve played in the Juniors for the likes of Lochee United, Dundee Violet, Downfield and St Josephs, care to share a story or two?
Have I played for all them??? It’s been a long time since then, with many ups and downs with different teams along the way, but sorry, I can’t think of anything in particular that stands out. Loved my time playing within these clubs and will cherish it.
What are some of the lessons you’ve learned on your footballing journey?
The best lesson I learned during my time playing was…. Enjoy it while it lasts! Sadly I had to give up the game earlier than I would have liked, due to two back operations and a hip operation.
What would you have done if you never played football?
I couldn’t imagine my life without it to be honest. I should have stayed on at school and learned something. I remember I was training with Celtic FC whilst at the high school, but I was never there to learn! I have a big family influence within football, my two cousins, Bobby Glennie and Gary Ogilvie and myself all playing senior football, with our three mums being sisters.
How has your time at Broughty Athletic been so far then?
Well, last year winning promotion via the Premier League play-off was truly amazing I must say. This year has been great so far, despite a recent lack of games, as we try to cement a place in the Super League. Time will tell with this one.
Broughty losing a game or a poor training session, what is worst?
Jeezo… By far the worst, it’s got to be Broughty losing a game for sure. You can’t change a result but you can change the training. Losing a game just makes my job harder come training nights with the squad, but we all accept it and crack on and learn by our mistakes.
Finally, tell us a bit more about Tony McAuley outside of football?
I work for James Ashton Funeral Directors and we are based in Dundee. I live in Broughty Ferry with my lovely wife Sarah, and my two sons, Kyle who is 18yrs old and Finlay who is 7yrs old.
Can I also say massive thanks to Gordon Deuchars(BAJFC Chairman) and Ronnie McKenzie(BAJFC President) and all the committee at BAJFC for all their hard work at the club and behind the scenes. It’s very much appreciated by myself and everyone else.