Five legends from the 1983 title-winning team have joined the Dundee United Supporters’ Foundation as honorary members.
Paul Hegarty, Maurice Malpas, John Holt, John Reilly and Hamish McAlpine have all accepted invitations to join DUSF as membership numbers edge above 1,900.
Each played a pivotal role in United’s championship success and will become DUSF honorary members.
The Tangerines finished a point above Celtic to claim the Scottish Premier Division title 38 years ago.
Current United boss Tam Courts recently pledged his support to DUSF.
And the news that the fans’ organisation has welcomed the support of the 1983 legends is a major boost as they raise funds to finance agreed projects for Dundee United.
“We have honorary members representing the 60s, 70s and 90s,” said DUSF director Martin Manzi.
“There was an obvious gap from the 1980s, our greatest ever era so far.
“We are delighted that these United legends agreed to become honorary members.”
Fellow director Michael Evans added: “These five players have a total of 2,707 appearances for Dundee United. It’s a great honour to have them on board.”
Who are the legends and why have they joined DUSF?
John Holt (1973-1987), 406 appearances and 24 goals
Holt spent 14 years in the Dundee United first-team after coming through the Tannadice ranks.
He won two League Cups and a Scottish Premier League title and was named man-of-the-match in the famous 2-1 win over Barcelona in the Nou Camp in 1983.
“I was happy to be invited by the DUSF to become an honorary member,” said Holt.
“My association with Dundee United FC goes back many years, as a player having signed as an ‘S form’ aged 13 and then holding various coaching roles within the club.
“To this day I’m still involved on matchdays as an ambassador. United has been a huge part of my life and always will be.
“The support the Foundation gives to the club is fantastic and I’m delighted to be part of that.”
John Reilly, (1979-1985), 76 appearances, 26 goals
Reilly played a key role for Dundee United in their 1983 success as a super sub.
He started nine times that year but stepped off the bench 12 times to net seven goals. Reilly has maintained strong links with United since retiring.
“I’m delighted to be supporting the Foundation,” said Reilly. “They remember the past, honour the present and will support the future.”
Paul Hegarty, (1974-1989) 707 appearances, 82 goals
Hegarty is third in the all-time record appearance holders’ list for Dundee United with 707 games for the club.
He played every game of the 1983 title success and even took a turn in goals against Morton when Hamish McAlpine was injured.
Hegarty had a brief spell in charge of United between 2002 and 2003.
“When we met with the Foundation directors and they explained how the DUSF had already assisted the club financially,” said Hegarty.
“They spoke of their plans to finance future academy campus projects so I was very happy to give them my backing.”
Maurice Malpas, (1979-2000) 830 appearances, 26 goals
Malpas spent his entire career at Dundee United and is second to Dave Narey in the all-time record appearance charts.
He combined playing with his electrical engineering studies during the run to the title in 1983 and chalked up 830 games during 21 years at Tannadice.
Malpas said: “I am proud of my long association with Dundee United FC and excited to assist the DUSF in their support of the Club.”
Hamish McAlpine, (1968-1986) 688 appearances, 3 goals
McAlpine spent 18 years as a keeper at Dundee United and found fame at the other end of the park as a penalty kick hero.
He netted three times from the spot in the late 1970s and started every game in the 1983 title win.
“I’ve always had a great relationship with the United fans,” said McAlpine.
“When the Foundation contacted me about supporting them I was delighted to be asked to join the other former players as an honorary member.“
The Dundee United Supporters’ Foundation launched in June 2017 but already boasts over 1,900 members.
Finn Dossing, Willie Pettigrew, Billy McKinlay and Craig Brewster are current honorary members and you can sign up here .