Forfar Stags lift championship trophy after "unlikely story" of reunion

A Forfar football team who reunited three years ago for a one-off game to help a former team-mate have gone on to be crowned champions of Scotland.

Mark Dowie
Tuesday, 31st May 2022, 3:00pm
Forfar Stags lift championship trophy after

Forfar Stags lifted the CSS Invitational Cup at the weekend after winning 1-0 in the final, defeating the Scottish Borders Seniors at the home of Rosyth FC.

It was the culmination of a remarkable journey for the 19-man squad of 40-somethings, who have a combined age of around eight centuries.

The team came together back in 2020 for a charity match against Dunfermline Athletic over 35s for team member Gordon Samson, who was diagnosed with cancer.

Most had played for the Stag Hotel in the town back in the 90s, and after rediscovering their passion for the beautiful game, what was only meant to be 90 minutes of football and a few refreshments, with money going to charity went further with an entry to the FFIT/Seniors set-up, which includes a national trophy.

On Sunday they lifted the cup thanks to a late strike by wing-back Stevie Milne and, following their success, have set their sights on more silverware.

The team, sponsored by the Stag Hotel, won their group section, defeating Livingston, Denny Warriors and drawing with Celtic 2-2 in Glasgow. They then defeated Raith Rovers Seniors at Station Park to set up a final clash with the Borderers. Milne’s goal, following an assist by Lindsay Stewart, had the players celebrating, with the final evenly contested.

The Stags looked likely to progress in the competition 18 months ago but Covid-19 stopped play, with the trophy postponed.

Scott Fenton, club organiser, said: “It took some time for the final date to be set so we’ve been anticipating this clash for what seemed like an age but it was fantastic to get it played and to bring the trophy back.”

Playing home matches at Station Park, the team’s travel and kit have been sponsored by S&S Joiners and Lee Hutcheon, Painter and Decorator.

Captain Kenny Stephen said: “Getting back together was an unlikely story but the team has given us a common goal. We’ve had great fun and some cracking games at senior stadiums across Scotland. We’re not thinking about stopping now.”

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