His journeyman career has so far seen him wear the colours of St. Johnstone, St. Mirren, Dundee, Ayr United and presently Raith Rovers.

He has shared the same dressing room with names including Craig Bryson, Steven O’Donnell and Tam Brighton.

However, perhaps it is spectacularly pooping the party that was Roy Keane’s Celtic debut in 2006 when he wore the shirt of Clyde for which he is best known.

He is, of course, Eddie Malone.
Whether as a left full-back or centre-half, Eddie’s combative ‘no-nonsense’ style of defending has won him many admirers over the years with his past clubs, as well as in the hallowed walls of his current home, Stark’s Park.

Eddie’s football journey started as a teenager at McDiarmid Park, before adding spells as a player at Broadwood, Love Street, Dens Park, Somerset Park and now Stark’s Park to his football CV.
However it is that memorable Scottish Cup goal against Celtic in front of a packed crowd at
Broadwood for which Eddie is most fondly known.

“My own memories of the game are obviously the media frenzy that was following Roy Keane and Celtic.”

“Luckily, Celtic had an off-day that day and we managed to perform well and get a shock result.  The (Clyde) team didn’t think it (beating Celtic) was possible.”

“It wasn’t as if it was a smash and grab that day.  I think we deserved to win and it was a good day for me personally as well.”

Even the most optimistic Clyde fan would admit that The Bully Wee were massive underdogs that day back in January 2006, however with the hosts having taken a shock 1-0 lead courtesy of a Craig Bryson header not one person in the 8000-strong sell-out crowd could have prepared themselves for what followed.
A crazy sequence of events shortly after the opening goal seen Steven O’Donnell miss a penalty, from which Celtic put the ball behind for a corner.
It was from the resulting corner, taken by O’Donnell, that Eddie Malone wrote his name into Clyde FC Scottish Cup folklore forever.

“It’s one of those things that landed perfectly for me on the edge of the box and I just smashed it.  It could have went anywhere, but obviously it went in the roof of the net.”

That astonishing strike is the kind of moment that would not look out of place in the What Happened Next round on A Question of Sport.

Perhaps even the most loyal of Raith Rovers supporters will admit that the current campaign has been somewhat up and down.

Turning over SPL side, Ross County 4-1 in the League Cup on a memorable night in Dingwall is one of the highlights of the Raith Rovers 2012/13 season so far, closely followed by the experience four weeks later against Celtic at Parkhead.

The Rovers may have been on the wrong end of a 4-1 score line back in September, yet it was the effort and passion shown by both the visiting players on the park and the visiting supporters in the Lisbon Lions Stand which won Raith Rovers the admiration of many in Celtic green and white that night.
In stark contrast, home league slip-ups against the likes of Dunfermline Athletic, Cowdenbeath and Greenock Morton only serve to accentuate the reason why Raith Rovers currently sit 11 points behind First Division joint-leaders, Dunfermline and Morton.
The sense of relief in the Stark’s Park stands at finally getting back to winning ways against Airdrie United last Saturday was palpable after a dismal Christmas and New Year period, a view Eddie was keen to share himself.
“I think it was just good for us to get back to keeping a clean sheet, because we hadn’t had one in a while.”

“It (the game) was quite comfortable to be honest.  We were probably the better team and Airdrie weren’t at their best.  2-0 was probably the correct result.”

“For me personally, as a defender it was good to have a clean sheet.  We had gone seven or eight games without one.  We looked a lot more solid all over the pitch on Saturday.”

“It was a big, big game and we’re just pleased to have got the win.”

The return to winning ways against Airdrie is swiftly followed by Raith’s first trip this season to Almondvale tomorrow to take on a Livingston side with whom the points were shared in a 0-0 league draw at Stark’s Park in November. It is a game which Eddie believes could define the remainder of the league season.
“The league is at that stage where it’s starting to sort itself out, and Livingston are there or there abouts.”
“It will be a tough game, but the 2-0 win against Airdrie has given us the confidence to go on get the three points on Saturday.”
Eddie’s football journey to get to Kirkcaldy has seen many trials and tribulations, but he was keen to stress that being a Raith Rovers player is an experience with which he feels very much at home.

Having been signed while John McGlynn was in charge in Kirkcaldy, Eddie had to quickly adapt to life under Grant Murray when McGlynn returned to Tynecastle to take the reigns at Hearts.

“Yeah, it’s been really good so far.  You want to come in and keep showing the faith that the manager (McGlynn) has shown in you.”

“Grant has come in and he’s just kept the club ticking over.  He’s kept it the way it was going.”

“Everything is settled – the training and the transformation from manager to manager has been really quite smooth.  The boys in the dressing room all get on and we’re all trying to pull in the right direction but yeah it’s been really enjoyable for me so far.”

“My ambition for the rest of the season is obviously just to try and keep playing every week.  I’ve been lucky so far because I’ve played most of the games, but it’s just a case of trying to keep my place at left back.”
“Reece Donaldson can play there, Laurie can play there, Dougie can play there, so there’s competition for places.  My contract is up in May, so we’ll need to see what happens then.”

For the current generation of Raith Rovers supporters, there is a sense of déjà vu between the aforementioned Clyde v Celtic game and our own Scottish Cup tie against Celtic in Kirkcaldy next month.

An 8000 capacity stadium packed to the rafters, Celtic in town, a match-up between SPL and First Division opposition and all in front of the eyes of the world with television cameras set to cover every angle of the 90 minutes.
From the moment Celtic seen off the challenge of a very spirited Arbroath in the Fourth Round replay at Gayfield, Raith fans in all corners of the globe have had only one game on their minds – Celtic at home in the Scottish Cup.
Rovers tickets have been snapped up in their thousands as the sense of anticipation surrounding Celtic’s arrival at Stark’s Park grows by the day, however Eddie’s view from inside the dressing room is somewhat different to the buzz being felt around Kirkcaldy at present.

“To be honest, it’s not really been spoken about because we’re mainly focusing on the league. The Celtic game will take care of itself. There isn’t any pressure on us, all the pressure is on Celtic. We’re expected to lose, but we’re all relaxed about the game and we’ll enjoy it when it comes along.”

 Eddie Malone may not be talking about his forthcoming Scottish Cup date with Celtic, but the Raith Rovers fans inside Stark’s Park next month would gladly settle for another stunning match-winning goal anything close to the one Eddie Malone produced on that fateful day at Broadwood seven years ago.

 By Martin Hart

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