Craig Brewster became a Scottish Cup hero with Dundee United 27 years ago but never forgets that the dream almost ended in the semi-final.
The former Terrors striker scored the only goal of the 1994 final at Hampden Park against a Rangers side dominating Scottish football to take the trophy back to Tannadice for the first time but only after a late rescue mission in the last four.
United were trailing 1-0 against Aberdeen at the national stadium in the semi before a last-gasp header from defender Brian Welsh earned a 1-1 draw and a replay which they won 1-0.
Brewster, speaking at Hampden Park where he was promoting Premier Sports’ live and exclusive coverage of Dundee United v Hibs, spoke about the luck sometimes involved in football destiny.
He told the PA news agency. “I never knew I would be idolised by fans all these years on for scoring the goal but it was the only goal and it won us the cup.
“The team performance that day was special against a Rangers team full of internationalists going for a double treble.
“Every man on that pitch in a Dundee United jersey gave everything and we were exceptional.
“But in the 89th minute in the semi-final against Aberdeen we were out of the cup.
“I got the ball, touched it to Dave Bowman, he crossed it and big Brian Welsh put in an unbelievable header to take it to a replay.
“It just shows you, for a lot of clubs it can just be your year and there are special turning points.
“In 2010, Dundee United were 3-1 down to Rangers (quarter-finals) and got back, drew 3-3 and won the replay and the rest is history (beat Ross County 3-0 in final).
“There are turning points in certain games.
“This year, Partick Thistle are coasting 1-0 against Dundee United but they score two late goals to get into the next round, struggle against Forfar and beat Aberdeen convincingly. You just never know.
“If the so-called big players from the clubs turn up on the day, that’s what it is all about and goals win games.”
Brewster also played for Hibernian, Dunfermline, Inverness, Aberdeen and Ross County, among others.
He also managed Dundee United and Inverness and was assistant to Derek Adams when the Staggies lost to United in the 2010 final.
St Mirren play St Johnstone in the other semi-final on Sunday and Brewster noted the absence of the Old Firm.
He said: “It is not easy getting to finals and the semi-final will be tough.
“Hibs will be strong but for me, with no Celtic and Rangers, the four teams have to have big belief that it could be their year.
“It is a massive incentive and those players should have springs in their steps because they should believe that if they play well they have a real chance.”