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Celebrate our past, ensure our future

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Honorary Members

To help ‘celebrate our past’  we decided to approach former United players to ask if they would support our  aims and objectives. We were delighted that four legendary United players joined us as Honorary Members – Finn Dossing, Willie Pettigrew,  Billy McKinlay and Craig Brewster, four highly influential players for the club and three of the four have scored hat tricks against Dundee. We are also delighted that the family of former Dundee United director, Derek Robertson have agreed to become the Foundation’s Honorary Member. Tommy McKay, amputee footballer and well-known United supporter also delighted us by accepting our invitation to become an Honorary Member. In 2021 we invited five League-winning Legends to become Honorary Members. We were delighted that Paul Hegarty, John Holt, Maurice Malpas, Hamish McAlpine and John Reilly accepted our invitations.

Willie Pettigrew

“ I was delighted to accept the offer of Honorary Membership of the Foundation being a former United player with fond memories of the supporters there. United need all the support they can get financially and that is why the Foundation has been set up. It’s worked at other clubs, Motherwell, St Mirren, Hearts and I hope the United fans can buy into it”

Dundee United signed Willie for £100,000 from Motherwell at the start of the 1979-80 season which was at the time, a club record fee. Willie had been capped five times for Scotland.

Willie quickly became a prolific scorer and played in every round of the Scottish League Cup in season 1979/80. United progressed to the League Cup final in December 1979 and after a goalless draw with Aberdeen at Hampden Park the replay was held at Dens Park on 12 December 1979. Willie proceeded to write himself into the history books by scoring twice in the cup final in a 3 – 0 victory to give Dundee United their first major honour.

The following month, Willie scored four goals against Dundee in a 5-1 Scottish Cup tie at Tannadice, and he continued his fine form to finish his first season as the club’s top scorer with 22 goals. An injury kept Willie out of the opening six weeks of the 1980-81 campaign, but he quickly recovered and was back in the team as United once again made it to the League Cup final this time against city rivals, Dundee. As in the previous year, the cup final was held at Dens Park and also as in the previous year, United won the cup with a 3 – 0 victory.
On leaving United, Willie played for Hearts, Morton and Hamilton Accies before retiring in 1986.
Willie made a great contribution to Dundee United making 91 appearances and scoring 36 goals. He is one of only three players to have scored two goals for Dundee United in major cup finals and he was formally recognised as a Dundee United legend and was inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame in 2014.

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Watch Willie Pettigrew in action

Finn Døssing

“It is with great sadness that we learned of the death of the great Finn Dossing. Finn was our first Honorary Member and has been a great supporter of the Foundation since our launch in 2017. He was a true gentleman and anything we have asked for he has willingly obliged with a smile on his face.” (DUSF Steering Group – June 2022)

Finn Døssing Jensen signed for Dundee United from his home town club Viborg FF, Denmark in December 1964. In his first season with United he made 19 appearances scoring an astonishing 21 goals.
During season 1965/66 Finn was our top goal scorer with 27 goals including one of the most celebrated hat-tricks in United’s history – 3 goals against Dundee at Dens Park on 11 September 1965, forever remembered as the Dens Park Massacre of ’65. For the record, he also scored hat-tricks against Hibs (away) in January 1965, against Motherwell (away) in November 1965 and again against Motherwell (home) in March 1966.
Finn Døssing also holds the record for the fastest goal scored by a Dundee United player in 14 seconds against Hamilton Accies in October 1965.
Finn was joined at Tannadice by fellow Scandinavians Mogens Berg (Denmark), Lennart Wing (Sweden), Örjan Persson (Sweden) and Finn Seemann (Norway). Dundee United finished fifth in the league, their highest ever finish in the club’s history and qualified for Europe for the first time. Finn missed the legendary victories over FC Barcelona and the away tie against Juventus. He played in the home game against the Italian giants and of course scored the winning goal.
Finn returned to Denmark at the end of 1967 where he eventually opened a tailor’s business in Viborg. He was one of the first inductees into the Dundee United Hall of Fame.

Sadly, Finn passed away in June 2022. He will always be remembered as a true United Legend.

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Watch Finn Døssing in action

Billy McKinlay

“Its becoming more and more common for supporters to take an interest in getting involved with the club, United fans were terrific with me and have been terrific over the years and always stick with their team through thick and thin. If fans can affect and influence the club in any way they can by investing it can only be good”

Billy McKinlay joined Dundee United on an S form signing in 1984 from Hamilton Thistle. He made his Premier league debut in season 1986/87 against Hibs when he was just 17 years old. Billy went on to become a regular over the next ten seasons making 284 appearances and scoring 31 goals.
A hard-working and stylish midfielder Billy was capped for the Scotland Under-16 team, the Scotland youth team, Scotland Under-21s, Scotland ‘B’ and at full international level. He appeared 29 times and scored 4 goals for Scotland and played at Euro 1996 and the 1998 World Cup.
Billy left Dundee United in September 1995 to sign for Blackburn Rovers but before he went he left a parting gift of a hat-trick against Dundee at Dens Park in a 3 – 2 victory for United.
He was very much a fan’s favourite in the late 1980s early 1990s and he was inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame in 2014.

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Watch Billy McKinlay in action

The Robertson Family

“Derek was always a passionate advocate of supporters being involved in the running of their football clubs. I am sure he would have been fully behind the aims and objectives of the Foundation and on behalf of Lyn, Caryn and our grandchildren Lauryn, Ethan and Owen Derek, we are delighted for the Robertson family to be an Honorary Member. It is a great tribute to Derek’s love of Dundee United and his work on behalf of the fans of the Club”                          (Sheila Robertson)

Derek was a lad from Dundee who attended Harris Academy. After a long and successful career with the Royal Bank of Scotland his retiral meant he could devote even more time to Dundee United Football Club.
Derek joined the Board in 2002 and in his 13 years at Tannadice, earned the respect of everyone at the club from Directors, players, employees and of course all United fans. He was a Founder Member of ArabTrust and was the driving force in opening up share ownership to fans. When appointed to the Board he brought great integrity and financial acumen to his position as Director.
However, it was his ability to communicate and resonate with the supporters that most United fans will remember him for. He became a vital link between the boardroom and the fans in the stands. Derek passed away in 2016 at the young age of 64.
The DUSF are immensely proud that Derek’s wife Sheila and their daughters Lyn and Caryn have agreed to accept our invitation of Honorary Membership, it means a lot to all of us at the Foundation.

Tommy McKay

As the DUSF is a fan run organisation we felt we should have a fan as our next Honorary Member so we are delighted that Tommy McKay has accepted our invitation.

Tommy, from Monifieth lost his leg at the age of nine to bone cancer, and he exploded on the scene last November when a video of his fantastic lobbed goal during a half time challenge at a game versus Dunfermline went viral. His spectacular chip over the keeper even won the SPFL goal of the month.

Since then Tommy has helped raised the profile of amputee football in Scotland has been instrumental along with the United Community Team in setting up the first Dundee United amputee team.

Tommy’s great year was capped when he was picked for Scotland’s first international fixture against Holland in October. His ‘can do’ attitude is a great inspiration to us all, and he has been a great ambassador and role model for all Arabs and the club. We are proud to have Tommy as our latest Honorary Member.

Tommy said “I don’t know what to say, I’m speechless. I’ve never had such an honour in my life. I think the work that the Foundation people are doing is essential to the future of our club, and I’d encourage all United fans to get in touch with them to find out more. I’d love to take up the  invitation even though to be amongst such esteemed company is something I don’t deserve.”

Craig Brewster

As well as being a club legend, Craig Brewster is an enthusiastic supporter of the Dundee United Supporters Foundation.  

We are delighted to announce that United Hall of Famer, Craig Brewster has kindly accepted our invitation to become an Honorary Member of the Dundee United Supporters’ Foundation.

Craig, born in Maryfield in Dundee, grew up as a Dundee United supporter, and signed for the club as a schoolboy. He was released by then manager Jim McLean in 1984, and played at junior level with Dundee Stobswell before signing for Forfar Athletic in 1985. He went on to play for Raith Rovers and won the first division title with them in 1991. In 1993 he returned to Tannadice under Ivan Golac for a fee of £250,000 and finished the season as the club’s top scorer.

Craig achieved cult hero status amongst Arabs by scoring the goal against Rangers in 1994 that won the Scottish Cup for the first time in the history of Dundee United FC after six previous final heart breaks.
Craig made a total of 117 appearances for the club scoring 47 times.

Craig said “I was delighted when asked to become an Honorary Member of the Foundation. I met up with the Steering Group at the recent 1994 cup win anniversary dinner and was really impressed how the DUSF had progressed in only two years. United have always had a very loyal fan base and it’s great that fans can get the opportunity to play an important part in the future of their club through Foundation membership.”

Paul Hegarty

Paul was United’s legendary captain during the glory years. As well as an exceptional centre half, he has been a great ambassador for the Dundee United over the years.  

In November 1974, Dundee United manager Jim McLean paid £40,000 to bring Paul to Tannadice at the age of 20. In his early days with United, he played in his favoured position as a striker, however in November 1976, Paul was played in centre defence in a friendly against Everton as an experiment. It became clear that Paul would make a dominant central defender and he soon formed a formidable defensive partnership with Dave Narey that would become the backbone of Jim McLean’s great Dundee United side for over a decade. Paul was rarely out of the side for the next thirteen years. In 1978, “Heggy” as he had become known to the United Faithful, was made club captain by Jim McLean, a position he would hold for eight years. At international level, Paul gained his first cap in 1979, and would later be the first United player to captain the national side.

During his years as club captain, Hegarty led his teammates to 3 major honours. In 1979, Heggy lifted the Scottish League Cup at Dens following a comprehensive 3-0 cup final replay win over Aberdeen, the club’s first ever major trophy. The following year, United retained the trophy, again at Dens Park but this time beating city-rivals Dundee by 3-0. Hegarty chose to step aside and allow long-serving goalkeeper and fellow Dundee United Legend, Hamish McAlpine to lift the trophy. More success followed, in 1983 Paul had the unique honour of leading United to their first and only League Championship win following a dramatic 2-1 win over Dundee at Dens Park. Along with Dave Narey and Hamish McAlpine, Paul was an ever-present in the side throughout the 36 League games of that remarkable season.

The influence Paul had on United’s reputation throughout Europe during the 1970s and 1980s cannot be understated. He appeared in 50 consecutive European ties from 1977 through to 1986, including famous victories over Monaco and Borussia Monchengladbach in 1981, and United’s run to the semi-finals of the European Cup during the 1983/84 season. He missed 5 matches of the famous 1986/87 UEFA Cup run but returned in time for United’s amazing quarter final Nou Camp victory over Barcelona. He collected a runners-up medal after the heart-breaking final at Tannadice. Paul returned to Tannadice as coach on three separate occasions, and had two spells as Caretaker Manager.

Hegarty is the most successful captain in Dundee United’s history leading the club to three major honours, and only Dave Narey and Maurice Malpas have appeared more times in a tangerine jersey. In January 2008, he was one of the first players inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame. Paul played 707 games for United, scored 82  goals and gained 8 Scottish caps.

John Holt

Dundee born and bred League-winning legend is a very supportive and articulate advocate of DUSF.

A Dundonian, John signed on an ‘S’ form from Invergowrie Boys Club in February 1972. By April 1973 he was playing regularly for the reserves at Tannadice and later that year he signed his first professional contract at the club. He was only 17 years old when he made his first team debut in January 1974.

John’s versatility was key to United – his preferred position was full-back but due to fierce competition for the full-back berths at Tannadice he often played in midfield during his early years in a tangerine jersey. He very quickly established himself as a first team regular under the management of Jim McLean and he was very rarely out of the side from 1977 onwards.

In December 1979, John Holt picked up his first winner’s medal as United defeated Aberdeen 3-0 in the League Cup Final replay at Dens Park – the first trophy in the club’s history. A second winner’s medal wasn’t long in coming as the Terrors retained the trophy the following year with a famous 3-0 win over city rivals Dundee with John starting for Jim McLean’s men once again.

His third and final winner’s medal came in 1983 when Dundee United defied all the odds to be crowned Scottish Premier League champions after a dramatic final day showdown against Dundee at Dens Park. John played a crucial role in United’s title win – playing in the majority of the club’s league fixtures. Although he was never a prolific goal-scorer it was during the 1982/83 season that John scored his only ever hat-trick for United, coming in a 5-0 win at Rugby Park in February.

Season 1986/87 was John’s last full season at Tannadice, and it was a special one for him and for the club. John started in the first leg of the UEFA Cup at Tannadice against Barcelona where the Spanish giants were defeated 1-0 but it was his man of the match performance at the Nou Camp that has gone down in Arab folklore. He went onto play in both legs of the semi-final against Borussia Monchengladbach and both legs of the final against IFK Gothenburg where United were unlucky to miss out on European glory – losing 2-1 on aggregate.

Still highly regarded by the fans at Tannadice, his contribution to the club’s successes during the late 70s and early 80s were recognised when he was inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame in 2011. John made 406 appearances for United and scored twenty-four goals.

Maurice Malpas

Maurice has been an incredibly successful player with United and Scotland and was delighted to become a DUSF Honorary Member

Maurice signed for Jim McLean at Dundee United on an ‘S’ form in 1978. Initially he combined his football career with studying for an electrical engineering degree. He went professional following the completion of his studies in 1984. Malpas made his full debut for the club in November 1981, aged just nineteen, and made the left-back position his own, taking over from legendary Frank Kopel.

Maurice missed only two matches throughout the 1982/83 season, as United side claimed the Scottish Premier Division Title. Maurice showed maturity beyond his years in the nail-biting climax to the season at Dens Park. The Terrors won 2-1 to be crowned Champions of Scotland.

Maurice was an integral part of the side that reached the European Cup Semi-Final in the 1983/84 season and the UEFA Cup Final during the 1986/87 season. He received his first full international Scotland cap in June 1984. Maurice was then a regular first team starter in the Scotland team. Becoming Club Captain in the late 1980s and Player Coach in the early 1990s, he was voted the Scottish Football Writers Association Player of the Year for his performances during the 1990/91. After collecting six runners-up medals in all competitions since that League Championship win in 1983, Maurice was the first United captain to lift the Scottish Cup in May 1994. United were 1-0 winners thanks to fellow DUSF Honorary Member Craig Brewster’s goal. Maurice climbed the Hampden steps to finally lift that trophy for United.

Maurice was one of five United players who travelled to Mexico for the 1986 World Cup, where he played against Denmark and West Germany. He rarely missed a match, and played in all of Scotland’s matches in the 1990 World Cup Finals. In the second match against Sweden in Genova, Malpas became United’s most capped player, overtaking Dave Narey’s total of 35 caps. In 1992, he made his 50th international appearance in Norway, and made captain to mark the occasion. A week later he played in Scotland’s first ever appearance in the European Championship Finals, playing against the Netherlands and Germany, and finished off his record total of fifty-five caps against Italy.

After a hugely successful ‘one-club’ career, Maurice retired in the year 2000, after a career spanning two decades and five United managers. He remained a coach at United until 2003. Maurice made 830 appearances for United scoring twenty-six goals. He was one of the first former players to be inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame in 2008.

Hamish McAlpine

The term  ‘a character’ is over used in football nowadays. However, Hamish was, and continues to be an incredible character. As well as a great goalie, he is a real entertainer and great to listen to when he rolls off his stories about days gone by.

Hamish played youth football for Butterburn Youth Club – where he earned a Scotland youth cap – and Dundee North End before signing provisionally for Dundee United in June 1966. He made his first team debut against Hearts in 1969 but had to settle for playing in the reserves in the main until the 1970/71 season when he took over from Donald Mackay as United’s first choice goalkeeper.

Hamish became the first-choice goalkeeper at the club throughout the 1970s although it was Sandy Davie who was selected to play in the club’s first ever cup final: the 1974 Scottish Cup Final against Celtic.

Hamish starred in the 1979 League Cup Final victory against Aberdeen and played in the 1980 League Cup Final victory against Dundee. Skipper Paul Hegarty stepped aside to allow Hamish to lift the trophy – a gesture which recognised the long-serving goalkeeper’s loyalty to the club.

His quality and experience proved crucial as United won the Scottish Premier League for the first time in their history in 1983. Hamish recorded seventeen cleans-sheets over the course of the 36-game league campaign – a truly remarkable record.

Hamish had been a vital part of United’s gradual rise as a respected side in European football, playing in forty consecutive ties. This culminated in the clubs 1983/84 European Cup run, where they narrowly lost out to Roma at the semi-final stage. He excelled in a UEFA Cup tie against Manchester United in November 1984, arguably his best performance, as United gained a 2-2 draw, and his performances throughout that season saw him given the Scottish Football Writers’ Association’s Footballer of the Year for 1985 – becoming part of a select group of goalkeepers to have won a Player of the Year award.

After 20 years of service to United, Hamish rounded off his playing career with spells at Raith Rovers and Arbroath before hanging up his boots in 1989.

Over the course of his career Hamish played 688 games for Dundee United scoring three goals. Hamish earned three winners’ medals, four runners-up medals and had been recognised at under 21 level for Scotland – as an overage player – although he never received a full international cap. A much-loved figure at Tannadice and beyond, singer-songwriter Michael Marra paid tribute to Hamish with the song, ‘Hamish the Goalie’ which was originally recorded to mark his testimonial year. He was inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame in 2009.

John Reilly

John is a real ‘man of the people’ who is know and loved by all Arabs. Unfortunately John’s career was cut short by injury, but his shortened football career was filled with memorable moments.

Dundonian, John (Boney) Reilly joined United from Strathtay on an ‘S’ form in January 1977. A Scotland schoolboy international, he was called up for United reserves in the latter half of season 1978-79. His performances in the second eleven earned him a place in the Scotland youth squad and a United first team debut in February 1980.

Over the next three seasons, John made thirty-six appearances and he was an important squad member throughout the 1982-83 season, making a significant contribution with seven League goals as United went on to finish the season as Scottish Premier League champions for the first time.

John etched his name into the history books by scoring the Club’s first ever European Cup goal in season 1983/84, two minutes into the first-round tie against Hamrun Spartans in Malta. Once again, Boney made a significant contribution finishing the season with an impressive thirteen goals in twenty-eight appearances.

John moved to Motherwell but in 1987 an Achilles tendon injury picked up not long after his move to Fir Park forced him to retire at the age of just twenty-five. Thanks to advances in surgical techniques, John managed to get back into the game with several local clubs including Dunfermline Athletic, Forfar Athletic and Arbroath before retiring in 1996.

John made seventy-six appearances for United scoring twenty-six goals.

Andy Rolland

The Major! Now in his eighties and still working full-time, Andy is a really welcome and popular addition to our Honorary membership. 

Andy was born in November 1942 in Fife and was signed by Dundee United manager Jerry Kerr for £10,000 in September 1967 from Cowdenbeath.

Andy has the nickname of The Major (due to his vocal presence on the park) and he was a very popular, tough, overlapping  right back. He is joint 8th in all time appearances having played in a total of 440 games for United and scoring 37 goals. He took part in many of the Club’s early European adventures, playing in the Fairs Cup, European Cup Winners Cup and the UEFA Cup, facing the likes of Newcastle United, Grasshoppers of Zurich, Sparta Prague, Juil Petrosani of Romania, Bursaspor or Turkey, Iceland’s Keflavik and Porto.

He played for United over 11 seasons and collected a Scottish Cup Runners-up medal in 1974. Andy was also capped for the Scottish League in 1976. In summer 1978, Andy moved to the US to play in the North American Soccer League, featuring for Fort Lauderdale Strikers and Los Angeles Aztecs, the latter involving a swap deal for George Best.

On returning to Scotland Andy went on to play for Dunfermline Athletic and Cowdenbeath as player/manager. Andy continued playing in the Junior leagues playing for Newburgh, Leven and Thornton eventually hanging up his boots at age 45.

The Major was inducted into the Dundee United Hall of Fame in 2009.