Dundee cult hero Gary Harkins has announced his retirement from football.
Harkins enjoyed three spells at Dens Park during a 19-year career, as well as two stints at Partick Thistle, shifts at Blackburn Rovers, Grimsby Town, Kilmarnock, St Mirren, Ayr United, Greenock Morton and Queen of the South, and a brief swansong at Stenhousemuir.
His spectacular goals and laid-back style made him an instant fans’ favourite at Dens Park.
But his contribution during the 2010/11 “Deefiant” campaign – when the administration-hit Dark Blues overturned a 25-point penalty to survive in the First Division – saw him elevated to hero status.
He left for Kilmarnock the following summer, but returned to the Dee in January 2013, with the club battling for Premiership survival after Rangers’ liquidation saw them handed a shock promotion.
Harkins – dubbed “GGH” (Glorious Gary Harkins) by fans and known as “Jeebsy” by teammates – left Dens again at the end of the season, this time for St Mirren, but returned to Tayside in June 2014.
He gained online fame during the following campaign when, in celebration after scoring against Motherwell, he and teammate Jim McAllister performed a wrestling move known as the “RKO”, winning approval on Twitter from the move’s originator, WWE wrestler Randy Orton.
He fell out of favour with former Dee gaffer Paul Hartley the following season, but still managed 35 appearances before departing for the last time.
In a social media statement, Harkins said: “Having played professional football for 19 years now, it’s time for me to call it a day.
“I’ve been lucky enough to play for many great clubs and it’s been great to play the game and share the dressing room with some amazing people over the years.
“To the fans that have supported me over the years, I thank you and I hope I’ve given back a bit of enjoyment to you in the stands.
“Was a pleasure to play in front of you! Thanks for the memories!
“All the best. Jeebsy/GGH.”