It's Payback Time ; REUNION: East Fife's Kevin Fotheringham, Pictured at East End Park, Will Face McCoist and Rangers on Tuesday Night
Byline: EWING GRAHAME
EAST FIFE midfielder Kevin Fotheringham picked up more in bonus moneyfrom Ally McCoist for cleaning the Rangers legend's boots - whilst an Ibroxapprentice - than he does in most seasons at New Bayview.
However, he's hoping to leave his old benefactor out of pocket by putting theThird Division outfit into the quarterfinals of the CIS Insurance Cup atRangers' expense when they meet at East End Park on Tuesday.
It was during the early 1990s that Fotheringham got to see the Ibrox innerworkings and be part of a club that,at the time, was the dominant force inScottish football. It's an experience he has never forgotten, for a number ofreasons.
'I was the home kit man at Rangers,so I had the pleasure of looking afterCoisty's gear and getting a decent bonus off him at Christmas time,' saidFotheringham.
'He used to give us [pounds sterling]100 at Christmas which wasn't bad at all. He's not astight as people say.I have fantastic memories of my days at Ibrox. Rangers werein the midst of the nine-in-a-row run at the time and the place was buzzingbecause the team was always winning.
'They were playing in the Champions League, cups were coming in from here,there and everywhere and the place had a great feel about it,with some greatScots mixing with some really gifted foreigners.
'I wouldn't have changed the experience for the world. I was a Rangerssupporter as a kid and I started training with them when I was 13 years old. Iwent fulltime on my 16th birthday and I had five happy years there.' The32-year-old failed to make the grade with Walter Smith's side but he'll beforever grateful to Rangers for saving his career when it looked as though aback problem was going to cut short his playing days.
'When I had my back operation, I had six months left on my contract but it wasknown I was going to be out for a year,' said Fotheringham,whose cousin isCeltic midfielder Scott Brown. 'Rangers said they would keep me on until I gotfit again.
'When preseason training came round, they said they would keep me until I wasfit, which was fair enough. Then I didn't get paid at the end of one monthbecause I hadn't signed a contract but I was told I could use their trainingfacilities.
'Unfortunately, I had no money coming in, so I had to leave, get a job and tryto get myself fit while finding another club.
'There were no hard feelings or anything like that. I was grateful for havingfive years there.
'It was just a wear-and-tear injury.I had one leg shorter than the other and myback was getting sorer and sorer. Eventually,I had to get an operation on it.
'I was sent down to London by the doctor. Then I spent 10 days down there afterI had my operation. …