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Simon Ferry ready for Peterhead farewell to be long-awaited family affair

Peterhead midfielder Simon Ferry, who will play his last game for the club on Saturday
Peterhead midfielder Simon Ferry, who will play his last game for the club on Saturday.

Simon Ferry’s Peterhead farewell against Airdrieonians this weekend will prove to be a long-awaited family affair.

Ferry will play his final game for the Blue Toon tomorrow when they face the Diamonds in the last game of the season.

For the first – and last – time in his Peterhead career, his partner Steph – and sons Frankie and Jude – will be in attendance at the Excelsior Stadium.

“My Mrs is coming to her first Peterhead game,” said Ferry. “She’s bringing the boys, which will be good, because I’m sick of telling them how good I am.

“My boys are football-daft. They’re a big reason in what I’m going to do next as they’re desperate to see me coach and play.

“I’ll be able to see them a bit more, as it’s been tough on them. I don’t get to see a lot of their games.

“I’m delighted they’ll be there. They’re Peterhead-daft – they’ve got full Peterhead strips and tracksuits. They’ll be Peterhead fans for the rest of their days.

“My oldest is a proper statto. He’ll know possession, shots on target – I’ll come in on a Saturday night and he’ll say: ’17 shots, how did you get beat? What happened?’

“We’ll definitely be back, whether it’s in Glasgow or up in Peterhead, to watch a few games next season.”

Ferry’s final home appearance came in last weekend’s 1-0 win over East Fife at Balmoor.

It was a chance for Ferry to say farewell to some of the key figures behind-the-scenes who have played a crucial part in making his stay enjoyable.

Peterhead manager Jim McInally
Peterhead manager Jim McInally.

It came out on the Twitter before the game and I think that was the manager and chairman wanting to give me a wee bit of a send-off before I went,” said Ferry.

“It was strange saying goodbye to everyone I’d known for seven years. The game was almost a bit of a distraction.

“We had a wee do at night and Rodger (Morrison, chairman) gave me a whiskey decanter and a couple of glasses.

“Mary upstairs, Stan the groundsman, Marco (Alexander, kitman), Nat (Porter), John Morgan, Martin (Johnston) – guys that have made me feel really welcome in the time I’ve been here. Sharon (Brown) in reception has been brilliant; this year I’ve done a bit of video analysis with the guys and Sharon’s made sure everyone had a username, password and that their videos were set up.

“It was a bit emotional to be honest. I’m just glad I’ve had the chance to come up here and meet these types of people.”

‘Me and Jim have probably fallen out about five or six times’

Seven years and 188 appearances after joining, Ferry cites moving north as one of the best decisions he could have made. It has set him on the path to coaching and also seen him learn closely from Peterhead manager Jim McInally.

He had turned down a move to ambitious League Two side Kelty Hearts last summer, with the Fife side joining Peterhead in League Two next season.

“It was a big gamble for me to leave full-time football,” said Ferry. “I had another year at Dundee and could have stayed another a year. I had a couple of chances to go down to Millwall and Shrewsbury on trial, but my Mrs was adamant we weren’t going back down.

Peterhead midfielder Simon Ferry.
Simon Ferry will leave Peterhead this summer.

“I was half-thinking about chucking it, but Jim said to come up and see if I enjoyed it. Jim was the first guy who taught me about real football, being my under-17s manager at Celtic.

“Being back with somebody you knew would help you – me and Jim have probably fallen out about five or six times, but, the type of guy he is, you make up and get on with it again.

“I’m not going to say it’s been laughs, jokes and love hearts for seven years, but there’s a respect there. I know he’ll be honest with me and he knows I’ll be honest with him.

“As football players, that’s all you really want.

“Paolo di Canio is my favourite manager and he’s probably the most ruthless manager you’ll meet in your life. He told you how it was.

“Other managers I’ve had would maybe not speak to you, or you could tell they’re whispering to their assistant about you.

“With Jim and Davie, they tell you like it is. I’m like that as well and it’s probably why it’s worked so well for me up here.”

‘Over the last wee while, it’s been my desire to do something outwith playing’

Ferry has had an injury-hit campaign, after struggling with Achilles and back problems which have curtailed his availability.

They did not play a part in his decision to move on, rather a desire to move into coaching full-time and be closer to his family.

“It wasn’t really difficult, because I felt I wasn’t contributing enough on the playing-side,” he added. “Ultimately I’m signed as a player.

“On the flipside of that, I’ve really enjoyed the coaching. Over the last wee while, it’s been my desire to do something outwith playing.

“It’s hard leaving somewhere you’ve been for a long time. But I’m an ambitious guy and I don’t like waiting about. If I did, I’d end up getting a bit narky because I feel like I’m ready to do something myself.”

Peterhead midfielder Simon Ferry.
Simon Ferry.

“I’ve been hard on the boys this year. I wouldn’t be surprised if some can’t stand me and can’t wait to see me go,” said Ferry. “I hope they realise I did that because I see something in them and they need to be pushed.

“It’s not easy to play under guys like Jim, Davie and myself, who are really honest. They could have chucked in the towel.

“But every one of them has stuck at it and that’ll stand them good in stead for the rest of their career.

“There’s not one I can look at and say they’ve not put it in this year. I told them after the Alloa game I thought we would go down, but they’ve stayed up and not by deviating from what we’ve done all season.

“The boys have played a massive part in me sticking to my beliefs as I go into my next adventure.”

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