From season ticket holder at The Falkirk Stadium, to playing on the pitch at the heart of the defence. That is the Gregor Buchanan story.
Let go as a youngster on the books of the Bairns aged 16, the centre-half is back after following Morton team-mate Michael Tidser’s path to Westfield.
Buchanan grew up in Falkirk and needs no introduction to the club, which his father Gordon also played for in the early 1980s.
He re-visited his old seat in the main stand, row F, on “a proud day for myself, and my family”.
He added: “The manager and I were speaking about it earlier – there hasn’t really been a connection between the fans and the dressing room since Craig Sibbald was here. He had great success but apart from him there hasn’t been too many local players who know what the clubs about in recent years, but I’m looking forward to get to know even more about it on that side as well.
“It does feel like coming home to an extent, I’ve got an affinity here and I do care about the club and there have been times where I have thought it wasn’t going to happen but it’s a nice feeling to be a Falkirk player after being a season ticket holder here for a number of years.”
I was let go and told I wouldn’t make the grade. I’m here now and can prove them wrongGregor Buchanan
That was before football took over and after progressing through the junior ranks following his departure from Westfield he entered the seniors with Airdrie. Spells with Dunfermline and Dumbarton followed before a ‘double promotion’ season where he helped both St Mirren and Livingston to the SPFL top flight. He was signed by Ray McKinnon at Morton last summer.
The Bairns boss is a big fan of the defender and was keen to have the pair have link up again.
Buchanan added: ““I’m a big fan of his too so hopefully it works well because I enjoyed playing a good brand of football under him.
“Even though it was only a few games I had a real sense of enjoyment working with the manager.
“I had a number of options in the championship to stay there but he was one of the influences on his plan that he has in place for the club going forward was something I wanted to be a part of and hopefully it can be a successful one
“If we keep making signings the likes of Tidser and players of that quality will have a really good chance of playing not only a good brand of football but a successful one.
“However there is no doubt it’s going to be a difficult one because this will be tough week in week out and the fancy to understand that.
“We are undoubtedly the biggest club in league one and were one of the biggest clubs in the Championship last year everyone will come to Falkirk looking for a scalp. This will be teams’ big day out.
“It’s like when Rangers were going at this level – every game they played everyone was wanting to beat them as the big team. It will be a similar situation with Falkirk.”
He’ll be in familiar surroundings and have a familiar face in the dressing room in Michael Tidser who also confirmed his arrival today, and in the manager’s office. It will be Buchanan’s second pre-season with Ray McKinnon after last summer’s work at Morton.
“It was one of the harder pre-seasons I’ve been involved in to be honest.
“It was enjoyable but hard work. We had a great start last year at Morton after that though so hopefully it builds us up for a similar successful start to the season here.”