The ball under his spell, and Andy Robertson likewise, David Wotherspoon drove forward at pace from inside his own half and turned the back-pedalling Dundee United defender inside and out before sitting him down on the Celtic Park turf.
From there, the future Scotland captain got the best view in the house as Rado Cierzniak stopped there being a new contender for best Scottish Cup final goal ever.
The May 2014 encounter with Robertson and United wasn’t the first time Wotherspoon had upstaged a player who would go on to become a Liverpool Champions League – and now Premier League – winner, however.
The St Johnstone midfielder has also got a tale to tell the grandchildren about the night he got the better of Virgil van Dijk.
In November 2011 the Perth midfielder was an emerging talent with Hibernian and a Scotland Under-21 regular.
Billy Stark’s team were trying to keep pace with the Netherlands in their European Championship qualifying group. The Dutch, whose timeless pedigree was underlined by the fact they had won two of the previous four Euros, had started the campaign with three wins out of three. And in Nijmegen on the German border, Wotherspoon was tasked with stopping Van Dijk from dictating the game from centre-back in a manner that was already becoming his trademark.
“I played quite a few times for the 21s but that game sticks in the memory, for sure,” he said.
“We were obviously the underdogs going over there. There was a big crowd, which isn’t usually the case at 21s games.
“But the players we had at that time, and the way Billy Stark set us up, gave us a chance.
“I can remember Van Dijk kept stepping into midfield if he got the opportunity and playing diagonals. There’s a picture of me up against him and he looks huge next to me.
“I played behind Jordan Rhodes. They had a lot of possession and I was tasked with trying to stop him getting forward. I must have done it quite well because we won!”
Indeed they did. And Wotherspoon scored the winner.
“Jordan got an early goal,” he recalled. “I couldn’t have told you it was as early as 59 seconds, mind you. James Forrest went down the right and crossed for Jordan, who scored with a header at the front post, I think.
“They equalised and then for my winner Ryan Jack, who was playing right-back, went down the line and cut it back for me at the edge of the box. I took a touch and hit it as hard as I could.
“It went through someone’s legs – Stefan de Vrij’s, I think. It was an unbelievable win.
“Everything feels possible at that age but we knew it was a huge result.
“When we came back to Scotland the papers were putting me in with the likes of James McFadden for his goal against France. It felt like it gave me a profile that I’d never experienced before.”
The Scotland line-up that night was Mark Ridgers, Ryan Jack, Danny Wilson, Ross Perry, Paul Hanlon, James Forrest (Peter Pawlett), Liam Kelly, Tom Cairney (Liam Palmer), David Wotherspoon, Gregg Wylde (Leigh Griffiths), Jordan Rhodes.
Seven of those have become full Scotland internationals, while Wotherspoon has been capped by Canada. An impressive group and an impressive conversion-rate.
“It was a brilliant team,” said Wotherspoon. “The likes of James Forrest, Jordan Rhodes and Tom Cairney were top quality.
“Jordan Rhodes was a real goalscorer. By the end of that campaign he’d moved up to the senior squad. It was the same with James. That dented our chances of getting to the finals.
“Ryan Jack was really good at right-back that night and you could tell he would go on to do well in his career.
“Danny Wilson had earned himself a big move to Liverpool.
“Paul Hanlon must have been playing left-back then. I was gutted for him not to get off the bench when he got a Scotland call-up. He’s a friend and a player I admire a lot. He’s definitely up there with the best centre-backs I’ve played with.
“Forrest was on fire.
“I got the man of the match trophy but all the boys were saying he should have got it, which was fair enough because he was frightening that day.
“I think he played up against Patrick van Aanholt and gave him a torrid time.
“There were good players everywhere you looked in our team. Liam Kelly was brilliant for Kilmarnock and got his move down south.
“Tom Cairney is a classy player with an unbelievable left foot. He is so composed on the ball.
“Liam Palmer is Scotland’s right-back now. He was centre-mid with the 21s back then.
“Gregg Wylde played on the left wing and had a really good game.
“Leigh Griffiths was probably brought on to run down time that night – it shows you how strong we were back then that he was only on the bench. The same with Scott Allan and Johnny Russell.”
That win put Scotland back in contention to top their group but it proved to be the peak of the campaign. The return fixture in Paisley ended 0-0 and Wotherspoon pointed to the dropped points against Austria as the ones that cost them.
Failure to qualify for the finals doesn’t tarnish the recollections of what he and his team-mates achieved in the Netherlands’ oldest city.
“They are proud memories,” said Wotherspoon. “I’ve been lucky to have a lot of those in my career and that night is definitely right up there.
“I didn’t get Van Dijk’s shirt unfortunately. I think I kept my own. I never really swapped shirts and looking back, I kind of wish I did.
“He was a very good player then and obviously he’s progressed massively.
“You have a pretty good idea if somebody is going to be a big player. Gylfi Sigurdsson was another guy I remember really standing out in the 21s.
“Gini Wijnaldum didn’t play in that game but I came up against him at younger age-group levels. You could tell he’d be special as well.
“When you see somebody like Van Dijk go on to become the player he has it makes the memory of that day even more special.
“It’s like the Scottish Cup final when I was up against Andy Robertson. The careers both are having now are incredible. Then you look back on your own career!”