Midfielder Joe McKee swept in a stunning 25yard free-kick in Tuesday’s play-off semi-final first leg – then dedicated the strike to Falkirk physio Ross Grady.
Since signing for the Bairns on January’s transfer deadline, McKee has been crocked twice and spent most of his early Falkirk career with the club’s medical staff.
But Grady’s treatment and rehabilitation has paid off and McKee is back, fresh for the play-offs, and made the hard graft count with a wonderful equaliser – the Bairns’ second on the night.
He told The Falkirk Herald: “That’s for Ross Grady, the physio. Since January I’ve had a few injuries. He’s the one who has been dealing with me every day.
“I’ve been champing at the bit to get back and it’s been Ross bearing the brunt of it – me in his ear, ‘let me back, let me on the pitch’.
“He’s been there every day and helped my rehabilitation and looks after me with the strappings and in the gym. All that work has come to fruition.
“I thought it was only right that when that one went in he was the man I celebrated with.”
When Willo Flood hauled Nathan Austin down on the break McKee took the initiative, and caught the majority of Tannadice by surprise by shooting from the set-piece, rather than crossing into a penalty box packed with Bairns.
The midfielder added: “It was one of those ones. You hit it and you hit the wall they’re on and break up the park and you’re in a lot of trouble! So I thought no I’ll have a pop and with a bit of belief thankfully it went in.
“Usually in that area I’d look to cross the ball in and that’s what they were all expecting but the goalkeeper gave me a yard or two so I had a pop. I had done a few free kicks in training, a few days before and had hit them quite well. As soon as it was given, I thought I’d have a go at it. “It was difficult in the first half with the way the sun was low and we were facing it. Delighted with the 2-2 and we’ll take them back on Friday.”