St Johnstone legend Nick Dasovic takes enormous pride in his top 10 position in the ‘Great Saints’ book.
But the former Canadian international is fully expecting to plummet down the rankings should authors Alastair Blair and Brian Doyle decide to give ‘Hagiography’ a post-double update.
Until Shaun Rooney bulleted a header past Livingston keeper Robby McCrorie at Hampden Park, Dasovic had the honour of being the only Saints player to score in a cup final.
His sweet left foot strike to equalise against Rangers at Celtic Park in 1998 is still probably regarded as the best of what has now become a collection of three final goals.
However, The Vancouver Whitecaps coach knows that Callum Davidson’s team have trumped all the collective significant achievements in the Perth club’s history.
“It’s not even a close debate now,” said Dasovic.
“When Walter Smith passed I started to reminisce a bit and think back to the Rangers teams we would play back in the day.
“It would be Gascoigne, Laudrup, Kanchelskis and other great players. What a side they had.
“So you can say things like: ‘Oh, the competition might not be as strong now – blah, blah, blah’.
“But that’s not a factor – you can’t compare eras.
“This St Johnstone team is the best ever to represent the blue jersey by a country mile.
“My team could speculate about how we would get on if we played against them and the guys from the 70s could do the same.
“But it comes down to what you achieve. And Callum’s team have achieved magnificent things.
“Not just that – it was how they did it. With no fans, a new manager and Callum had them playing football.”
Slipping down the rankings already
Dasovic added: “I was fortunate to make the top 10 in the book of all-time St Johnstone greats, which was amazing.
“Now I’m probably down to about 60th after what happened last year!
“I gave them a tenner to finish the book quickly!
“Every one of those players will deserve to be in that top 50 and Spoony and Callum have to be contenders to be the top two on the list.
“With Spoony, the people of Perth should be even more proud that the guy who started and won three cup finals is one of their own. From their backyard, grew up supporting the club, went to Hibs and then came back to achieve amazing things.
“And now he’s playing international football and has a chance to be at a World Cup. It’s such a great story.
“Football’s a romantic sport.”
Has Gogic landed yet? pic.twitter.com/eMw7sYym4P
— ChopMaster 🇨🇦 (@SpoonyChop) June 10, 2021
Saints will have to get past Celtic to make it three cup finals in a row but Dasovic believes their Hampden aura is a factor that shouldn’t be downplayed.
“I keep hearing that they’re going to rename it McDiarmid Park!” he joked, in reference to Saints’ four out of four record at the national stadium last season.
“The players will have such a good feeling going back there again. They’ve won there so many times now.
“It’s been a bit of a tough start to the season for them and they lost to Celtic at Parkhead.
“But I can see this semi-final being a turning point game in their season again – like the Hibs semi-final was last season.
“I’d be scared if I was Celtic because of the number of times this team has done the business.
“The supporters get to go there this time which was the only thing missing for the double.”