Monty pulls on the Hibs green to honour Scottish Cup hero
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Nick Montgomery will pull on a Hibs jersey with pride at Easter Road on Sunday – almost 20 years after his only previous appearance on the hallowed turf. Montgomery said he was thrilled to accept a personal invitation from legendary Scottish Cup-winning captain David Gray, a coach he has tipped to reach the very top of the game, to play in his testimonial match.
The new Hibs boss, who won the second of his two Scotland Under-21 in a 1-0 win over Croatia back in November of 2003, will be player-manager for the home team in Sunday’s glamour tie against a Manchester United XI.
Former Scotland captain Darren Fletcher is the biggest name in the away squad, while the home side will feature a number of Hampden heroes from May 2016 – including larger-than-life goalie Conrad Logan, Darren McGregor and Marvin Bartley.
Montgomery, who will be pitting his wits against former United and Scotland great Brian McClair in the away dugout, revealed: “Davie asked me - and I obviously said yes. It’s important for the whole club to support what he’s done and celebrates his career.
“He’s a really important member of the staff and this will give him something to look back on with fond memories. I was more than happy to accept the player manager role.
“But I’ve been doing a bit of playing this week just to get the legs moving again! And, yeah, it’ll be good to pull on the jersey. I don’t know who will be making the decisions - but I’ll definitely have some game time. It’s going to be good fun.”
David Gray’s Testimonial sees a Hibs XI take on a Manchester Utd XI on Sunday 15th October at Easter Rd with a 2 pm kick off. Tickets & limited Hospitality packages are available at https://www.eticketing.co.uk/hibernianfc/Events
Kept on as part of the coaching staff when Montgomery, assistant Sergio Raimundo and goalkeeping coach Miguel de Oliveira Miranda arrived last month, Gray – briefly interim boss following the dismissal of Lee Johnson – has been an influential figure during the early days of the new regime.
Montgomery said: “David has been really helpful. I spoke to people who knew him, before I got here, and the feedback was all the same – that he was a great guy, genuine, honest and he loves the club. He’s done nothing but support me, Miguel and Sergio since we arrived.
“Instantly, there was a great connection with us. He’s been a massive help with everything we’ve put in place, a great help for any questions I might have. He’s been a massive support.
“And he’s got all the quality to coach at the highest level. He’s definitely got leadership skills. No matter what direction he decides to go in, whether it’s coaching or management, he’s got the skillset to go into anything he wants to do.”