& # 39; The next minute I felt "bang!" & # 39; | The boss of the Hearts, Craig Levein, reveals how the stay in the Juniors made him a man before the visit of the Scottish Cup to Auchinleck Talbot.


For the temple of Alan @CCP_Sport

When Craig Levein endured a few strokes of good humor in Petershill Park, he brought a lot of vivid memories. Some painful; all formative

His time in the Junior ranks with the amateurs of Fife, Lochore Welfare, happened almost 40 years ago, a new-faced teenager trying to make his mark in a league of gray and astute veterans who were not friendly with this languid young man who was leaving from the back. .

Levein He points his face to indicate where he received his first skelp. Welcome to men's football It would be the first of many lessons he learned at that level, as he grew very fast before joining Cowdenbeath in 1981.

I would continue an excellent career with Hearts, winning 16 full games for Scotland on the road. However, he never forgot his learning in those marked launches.

"I played for Lochore's powerful Wellbeing", he smiles. "My best moments? I do not know if we had any to be honest! But it made me grow, it made me a man.

"I still remember my first game and the great forward who was playing against me." The ball approached him and he controlled it. I put my leg between his legs, threw the ball and went round the.

"I went ahead and the next minute I felt & bang & # 39;". The former Scotland manager gestures to his chin. "He was lying on the ground stunned, he said" that will be the last time you do it! "

He adds: "The next time the ball comes out, it's fair to say that he won it!"

It's a different ball game today, literally.

As illustrated in their 1-0 win over Ayr United in the fourth round, Auchinleck Talbot to have Much more for their game than those old traits of physicality and strength. One of the giants of the modern junior game, they can play.

He witnessed how Petershill was demolished 7-0 in person last Saturday, while one of his star men, Gordon Pope, even played with Levein at Dundee United.

"Unfortunately I could not stay incognito in Petershill," he continued. "There was a bit of banter, it was really fun, it's been a while since I've been in a game on the level.

"It was a bit fake because Petershill sent a man in the first 20 minutes, but I could see the players and what they can do." I have an idea of ​​what to expect and I will share that knowledge with our players.

"You could see that they are used to winning. They have good players and have a decent recent history. Some of them have been playing together for a while and you may have the option to choose some of the best players in the youth leagues.

"If you look at the Livingston team with which we drew 0-0, Scott Pitmann played Juniors midweek, so it is not out of imagination that you can compete at this level when you look at what they have done.

"So our quality will be what we need to bring in. That will be critical."

And Levein has pledged to show Auchinleck the utmost respect by selecting his strongest side, with the intention of avoiding a repetition of the nervous 1-0 victory that the Hearts claimed over the Bot in January 2012. The second-string Jambos , managed by Paulo Sergio, they left. From prison that day with a late attack by Gordon Smith.

Although Levein was not in charge that day, he will pay attention to the warning.

"Obviously I was not here at the time, but from what I've heard, it was a weakened side that went against them," he added. "I certainly will not do that.

"There may be some changes starting Wednesday night, but I do not see the need for wholesale changes at all."



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