ARTHUR NUMAN spoke to Simon Ferry on Open Goal Sport about the time he was tasked with convincing his compatriot and former Celtic stat Pierre van Hooijdonk to sign for Rangers (1872).
The defender, who had just signed for the Ibrox club and got a healthy slice of the illegally deemed used EBT system at the doomed club was asked by Dutch manager Dick Advocaat to try and get Pierre to cross the divide.
Even though Pierre left under somewhat of a cloud at Celtic he was having none of it when the call came Arthur explains.
“Dick knew that Pierre was my roommate and he said ‘Try to get Pierre. I want him to play for Rangers as well. Maybe you can convince him to come to us.’
“So I asked Pierre and I said ‘Dick wants you as a striker to join Rangers’ and he started to laugh. He said ‘Arthur, you have no idea eh?’
“I said ‘What do you mean? You can come for the next couple of years to play for Rangers. We have a new team, new players, we can compete in Europe against the big teams.’
“And he was only laughing and he said ‘Wait until you play your first Old Firm game and then you’ll realise what I mean. For me, it’s impossible to sign for Rangers’.
“I said ‘Come on? In Holland, players go from Ajax to PSV and PSV to Feyenoord.’ He said ‘Arthur, no. I’ve played for Celtic, I can’t play for Rangers’.
“I have to admit actually, when I came to Scotland and after a few weeks and especially after playing my first Old Firm game I realised what he actually wanted to say to me and he was spot on, he was right.”