Portsmouth's Craig MacGillivray: I may sound like a Yorkshireman - but Scotland is in my heart

The accent betrays his proud roots, but there can be no doubting Craig MacGillivray’s international birthright.

Friday, 30th August 2019, 7:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 4th September 2019, 12:43 am
Craig MacGillivray this week earned his maiden international call-up for Scotland. Pictures: Simon Davies/ProSportsImages/Pin

The newest addition to Scotland's squad has never played football north of the border, while communicates through a broad Yorkshire brogue.

Certainly, upon first encounter with Pompey’s amiable keeper, there are barely any telltale signs to unmask tartan ancestry.

Nonetheless, MacGillivray is a Scottish thoroughbred, a heritage he has never shied from since arriving at Fratton Park in June 2018.

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And on Sunday he will link up with Steve Clarke’s squad ahead of Euro 2020 qualifiers against Russia and Belgium.

He told The News: ‘I lived in Scotland until I was six or seven, but have continued to watch our international games.

‘You may not be able to tell from my accent now, but if you go back 22 years ago my accent would have been extremely strong!

‘I was born in Scotland and must have moved between both countries four or five times before settling in Yorkshire around the Harrogate area.

‘I grew up on a Perth farm. The land the farm was on was council-owned and, one day, they took it off us to build on.

‘It’s not the easiest thing finding somewhere else with land for farming again, so we moved to Yorkshire, I'm not sure why, but we did.

‘Then my dad became a paramedic and we moved back to Scotland because we didn’t like where we were, missing friends and family.

‘Next dad joined the Scottish Borders Ambulance Service and we came back to England.

‘My dad continued working as a paramedic in Scotland and come back at weekends. That didn’t work and we went back again – and came back again one more time and stayed in England.

‘But I remain Scottish, definitely!’

MacGillivray's dad is an Inverness fan, although took his son to Celtic on occasions when young.

Although it’s Leeds United which eventually won the 26-year-old’s support.

He added: ‘This accent only really developed in early high school areas when I lived in Yorkshire!

‘I would actually get a people mimicking my Scottish voice. I suppose if you're Irish, someone will try the accent.

‘I’m still Scottish.’