Kelty Hearts boss Kevin Thomson knew he was destined for management at the age of 19 — as he argued with Rod Petrie over 50 PENCE.
Locked in contract negotiations, Thomson told the former Hibs chairman that he would one day take the top job at Easter Road.
The brash teenager was in the process of penning a five-year deal, having burst onto the scene as part of the Hibees’ golden generation of Scott Brown, Derek Riordan and Garry O’Connor.
And he was already a cocksure character.
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“When I got my first five-year deal at Hibs, I sat across the table arguing with Rod Petrie over a pound,” said Thomson. “He wanted to give me and extra 50p and I wanted a pound!
“I said to Mr P, who I have the utmost respect for, ‘listen, I will be back here one day to be the manager!’
“At 19, you don’t know that you are going to play for Rangers, Middlesbrough and all that.
“But I always felt I would be a manager one day.”
‘Terry Butcher? Hated him’
Prior to ascending to the dugout, Thomson would turn out for the likes of Rangers, Middlesbrough, Dundee and play three times for Scotland.
He has previously told Courier Sport the influence that ‘inspirational’ Ibrox icon Walter Smith had on his coaching and man management.
However, Thomson is adamant he learned plenty about what NOT to do from ex-Hibs bosses John Collins and Terry Butcher.
“I never enjoyed Terry Butcher; hated him,” said Thomson. “He didn’t treat me well. I didn’t like John [Collins] but I still have respect for him.
“Even though I would never do anything that Terry or John did, I’m happy I’ve gone through that.
“When it came to togetherness and how they wanted to coach and manage players, not for me.”
He added: “Terry used to send me outside to run myself and put me in the gym with Maurice Malpas to do military stuff. Did I feel that was justifiable? No.”
Thomson, whose Kelty side boast a seven-point lead at the summit of League 2, was speaking to the Open Goal podcast, helmed by his former Dundee teammate Simon Ferry.
And the ex-Dens Park playmaker reflected on his 18 months in Tayside, suggesting that Paul Hartley’s decision to allow Ferry to leave the club in the summer of 2015 contributed to the struggles of subsequent campaigns.
“We had a great changing room for the first season [2014/15],” added Thomson. “The wheels came off a bit in the second season.
“Si’s [Ferry’s] banter and camaraderie was really important for a club like Dundee. When you are winning a game and then losing a game, having teammates like Si is really important.
“The following season, I think Paul [Hartley] didn’t like the laughs and the jokes.
“I felt a bit of a void. The group lacked a bit of personality. When you lose a few games and you don’t have that personality, then the group struggles.”