McGurn: Raith Rovers is like a home to me

David McGurn pictured celebrating after February's Scottish Cup win at Ibrox. Pic: Fife Photo Agency
David McGurn pictured celebrating after February's Scottish Cup win at Ibrox. Pic: Fife Photo Agency

Long-serving Raith Rovers goalkeeper David McGurn has ended speculation over his future by signing a new contract with the Kirkcaldy club.

The 34-year-old goalie is a hugely popular figure with both fans and team mates but his future had been shrouded in doubt following his recent exile from the side.

Fans feared that McGurn may have been about to end his seven-year association with the club, with a return to Greenock Morton rumoured to be on the cards.

However, following the sacking of manager Grant Murray this week, the Raith board moved swiftly to tie down McGurn on a two year deal, with the option of a third year.

Speaking after Saturday’s 4-0 home loss to Livingston, McGurn expressed his desire to stay with Raith, but at that point, he had not yet been made an offer.

“My first option is to stay at the club but I haven’t had any talks with the gaffer, or with the club, yet,” he said.

“We’ve not even had initial discussions, nothing, but hopefully we can talk as soon as possible.

“I’ve had a lot of great years at the club and I want to stay here - but it’s down to the club.”

McGurn, regarded by many as Rovers’ greatest goalkeeper in a generation, admitted that his special rapport with the fans is a big reason behind his willingness to stay.

“The fans have been brilliant for me,” he said. “I feel comfortable here - it’s like a home.

“There’s been some good times, and some horrendous moments, but the fans have always been here.”

McGurn wants to play until he is 40 and hopes that he can finish career at Stark’s Park.

He recognises, however, that his part-time status is not ideal, although he admitted it would take an ‘unbelievable’ offer to tempt him into full-time football and away from his job as a sports lecturer at Cardonald College.

“The club is in more of a full-time situation at the moment with physios and everything else, but I’ve been training part-time for a number of years, and it’s worked out well this year,” he said.

“I’ve been training with Queen’s Park on Tuesday and Thursday nights, and I don’t think it’s affected my performance for Raith on a Saturday.

“But any club wants their goalkeeper in training, so that’s something we need to sit down and discuss.”

Raith have lost all four games since McGurn lost his place to Kevin Cuthbert, conceding 13 goals, but McGurn insisted that he respected the now departed manager’s decision.

“The gaffer spoke to me and said Kevin had been patient so he was going to give a game,” McGurn said.

“I don’t need to like it - I don’t like it - but you’ve got to respect the gaffer’s decision. That’s football.

“After last year’s injury I was just dying to get back playing and when I got back in it was just a case of keep performing to stay in the team.

“I felt I was doing that. All I can do is train hard and get on with it.”

McGurn admitted that watching the Livingston defeat from the sidelines was painful viewing.

“It was a very disappointing performance, game and result,” he said.

“It wasn’t the way we wanted to finish off at home, leaving the fans dejected like that.

“It’s not a happy dressing room with that result and performance.”