HE'S known for his exploits on the pitch and for scoring off it. Now, Celtic legend Frank McAvennie can count being the inspiration of an award-winning Glasgow book on his list of conquests. 

The former striker is the unlikely source for a character in Shuggie Bain, written by Douglas Stuart, which was this week named as Waterstones Scottish Book of the Year. 

We reported earlier this week that the novel, Stuart's first, follows the story of a young boy being brought up by an alcoholic mother in Glasgow and Lanarkshire’s mining communities.


It features a family named McAvennie, including a character called Francis, inspired by conversations that Stuart heard growing up on Glasgow’s Pollok housing estate in the 1980s.

Stuart, who now lives in New York, told the Times : “Frank McAvennie was such a big part of my childhood, because it was a name I always heard.

“I’ve honestly never heard the name McAvennie anywhere else in the world other than Glasgow.

“Frank McAvennie was a name the boys at school always talked about, but really the only thing I know about Frank McAvennie is that he had frosted tips. I know more about his hair than I do about his football.

HeraldScotland: Douglas Stuart with the cover of his award-winning novel Douglas Stuart with the cover of his award-winning novel

“And the Francis McAvennie in the book is a totally fictitious character.”

McAvennie, 60, wrote himself into the football history books as part of Celtic’s triumphant centenary double winning side of 1988, sealing the double with two goals in the cup final at Hampden against Dundee United which Celtic won 2-1.

Shuggie Bain is in the running to win this year's Booker prize.