Thursday, 16 June 2016

My Favourite XI - Craig Livingstone

We asked the members of the forums to tell us their all-time favourite Killie XI. If you'd like to tell us about your favourite XI, simply send it to us with a wee paragraph about each of your choices, a photo of you and your Twitter handle (if you use it):

Here's Craig Livingstone to take us through his world-beaters...

I'm sticking very closely to the theme of My Favourite XI as opposed to our best XI, just to keep things clear!

GK: Cammy Bell
Was a close call between Cammy and big Dragoje Leckovic. One one hand there was a gigantic nutter who pulled off strings of wonder saves, helped win us a Scottish Cup and made a World Cup squad only a few months after departing Rugby Park, on the other was one of our own... a quality shot-stopper whose contribution to our League Cup win was immeasurable. Cammy edges it despite ruining his career by joining Sevco.

RB: Gus MacPherson
Gus gave us a good number of years service and was an absolute mainstay down our right-hand side. It took some getting used to when he left as I'd never seen Killie with anyone else at right back... only thing that changed over the years was his ever decreasing hairline. Amazing to think that we've never really had an SPL quality right back since he left with nothing but out of position midfielders and short term stop gaps ever since. Wee mention for Peter Canero who had a cracking spell in that role before moving to Leicester.

LB: Garry Hay
No brainer. Only possible contender was Dylan Kerr for that celebration against Ayr and his part in the Scottish Cup win, doesn't come close to Hooky when all things are weighed up. Years of service. Absolute consistency. Not too shabby in the middle of the park for a season or so after his legs had gone. Continues my theme of Killie cup winners.

CB: Ray Montgomerie
Cup winning captains are hard to leave out. Another who gave us his best years and his speech in the days leading up to the play-off final shows how committed he's been to us, still kicking about the club to this day. King of the last ditch tackle and lead the backline well for a number of years.

CB: Freddie Dindeleux
First player on my list so far not to be involved in either of the cup wins I've witnessed as a Killie fan but deserves to be here as much as anyone. Consistent, excellent last ditch tackles. Not bad in the air. Decent moving the ball around the back and a Jennifer Aniston hair cut to boot. What a guy. Honorable mentions to the no-nonsense duo I considered having in Frazer Wright and Kevin McGowne.

DM: Mark Reilly
This was a tough one. Every ounce of me wanted to put James Fowler here. As I said, it's hard to leave out a cup winning captain. In truth Mavis had some real quality, winning the ball and finding a teammate time and time again. Only realised just how good he was when he went down to Reading for six months. We were a much better team when he returned! The epitome of the unsung hero.

CM: Iain Durrant
Never wasted a ball and was the absolute heartbeat of our team when he was at his best. Picked passes for fun and controlled the tempo of each and every game he played in. Also managed to pick up a good few Scotland caps while in the stripes at a time when our national side was certainly stronger than it is today.

CM: Alexei Eremenko
His first season with us was the most enjoyable I've ever witnessed as a Killie fan. He picked passes no-one in the stand could see, never mind those on the pitch and made most of the SPL look utterly clueless week in week out. Special mentions to a good few real quality players who just missed out. Craig Bryson was probably one more season away from being first pick on this list. Tommy Burns, Liam Kelly and John Henry were all names that came to mind too.

AML: Steven Naismith
His performance against Falkirk in the League Cup semi final remains to this day one of the best individual performances I've ever seen from a Killie player. And all against an English Premier League winning goalkeeper! There wasn't anyone who came close to Naisy in this role but a special mention goes to Alex Burke for his breakthrough season and Stevie Murray for the entertainment factor.

AMR: Ally Mitchell
Another of those long serving players who had made their position their own and showed great loyalty to the club. A cracking all round wide player who did the dirty defensive work well while being dangerous coming forwards. Another cup winner although he was hidden behind David Bagan's limelight on the day. Bagan is joined on the honorable mention list by Pat Nevin who was always fun to watch in the brief spell we had him.

ST: Kris Boyd
Scored more goals for Killie than anyone else in my lifetime and banged five in one match against Dundee United. Deserves some credit for his role in keeping us up during his second visit and certainly lead by example for the younger players during this seasons run-in popping up with the final nail in Falkirk's coffin. This wasn't easy. DVT scored a cup winning goal. Paul Wright not only won us a cup, but was a stand out for us for a number of years and the first Killie forward I saw hit double figures in a season.

What do you think? Let him know on Twitter: @thelivvyeffect

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