Zander Clark has his shot at glory after watching 2014 heroics from Ibiza bar


Zander Clark celebrated St Johnstone’s last piece of major silverware by knee-sliding through a bar in Ibiza.

Now the goalkeeper hopes to be involved in the party celebrations at Hampden by lifting the League Cup on Sunday.

The big shot-stopper had been on loan at Queen of the South when Saints famously lifted the Scottish Cup in May 2014.

“We made the playoffs at Queen of the South that season and the Queens chairman had promised us that, if we got to the playoffs, we would get an all-expenses paid trip to Ibiza,” Clark explained. “My name was down for that.

“The boys got to the final so it was a bit of a surreal moment, me ending up in Ibiza. The full squad were in Ocean Beach Club that day and I found myself sitting in a boozer watching the final.

“I remember going mental at the barman because they changed the channel before the boys lifted the cup. I remember me going mental.

“It was a great day, one that I would have wanted to be at, but it would have felt strange, having been on loan for the full season.

“We had done so well at Queens that I felt it was a good one to go and enjoy. I managed to watch the full game and gave myself a couple of knee burns from a knee slide.

“I’d had one too many when Macca put the second goal in. It was a good day. I managed to enjoy it in the sun with a few tipples.

“To this day, I couldn’t tell you how I managed to make it along to the Beach Club afterwards.

“I sort of zig-zagged my way through the streets of San Antonio. The boys were all buzzing. They knew how long I’d been at the club. We had a good time after that.”

Clark has played a starring role in helping Saints reach this season’s finale. The Perth side came through a penalty shoot-out in the quarter final and then he produced the goods against Hibs in the semis.

He said: “When I went abroad, it was one of those where you think ‘am I ever

going to get this chance to be involved in a cup final squad?’

“They don’t come around too often. There have been some top players at the club who haven’t made it to finals. I’m just grateful that we have put ourselves in a position this year to go and be a part of it.”

It will be a touch surreal for Clark not having family, friends and fans at the game to cheer him on.

“I phone my dad after every game,” he said. “I called him after the semi-final and he said he was at the 1971 Partick Thistle against Celtic final.

“He went along, I think with his uncle. He was only nine or 10 at the time and followed Partick as a kid. He was there that day and they won 4-1.

“I’m gutted that with everything going on he won’t be there to watch one of his own in the cup final. But he’ll be watching from the house.

“It’s strange but it’s like any game that we’ve had this season. Every game you’re at you’ve got family or friends that want to come along.

“It’s been something that we’ve dealt with. It will be a different occasion, but we have dealt with it so far so we just need to get our heads round it and make sure we put in a performance.”

While no fans will be in the stadium, he knows how many people will be willing him on from home. One of those will be former team-mate and goalkeeper Alan Mannus.

“Big Al was one of the first to drop me a message when we got to the final. He sent me messages in the days leading up to the semi-final as well,” Clark said.

“I’m sure I’ll be in contact with the big man this week for a catch up and a good chat and find out how he’s getting on.”

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