Born in Paisley 13th Nov 1960. I was introduced to football by my late father Hugh. He used to take me to Parkhead to watch Glasgow Celtic from the age of 7. My boyhood heroes were Bobby Murdoch, Jimmy Johnstone and Kenny Dalglish. Coming from a council estate my ambition was to become a footballer.
My Professional career took off when I finished Scotland’s Top Scorer in 1984/85. Scoring 31 goals for unfashionable Albion Rovers, who were arguably one of the worst teams in Britain at the time. Refusing to sign a contract for Albion I ended up sending letters to English football clubs in the 1st and 2nd divisions, pleading for a trial. Middlesbrough were first to reply and after a couple of trial games I signed a two year contract with a two year option. As they say the rest is history.
I went on to play 382 games for Middlesbrough FC wearing the number 7 shirt and scored 147 goals. I also picked up two players of the year awards. Not bad statistics for a £25,000 signing. I also paled under the late great Jack Charlton for the Republic of Ireland, earning 7 caps. I scored on my debut against Wales and was part of the Italia 90 World Cup squad in 1990.
I did 500 commentary games following Boro alongside Alastair Brownlee. I also did a football show called The Three Legends which was broadcast over the northeast alongside Malcolm MacDonald and Eric Gates. We clocked up over 3,000 shows. For the commentary, we picked up a New York gold radio award and had record listening figures for The Three Legends show.
Middlesbrough Football club were the first club to have their own chanel, alongside Ali Brownlee I fronted a hourly show on a Monday and Thursday. I had a segment in the show named Bernie’s About, where I interviewed Boro greats like Brian Clough, Wilf Mannion, George Hardwick, Juninho, and Ravanelli.
My first Book was called Strikingly Different, a softback book about my career. Next, I brought out a hardback book named ‘Legend?’ with all the profit going to the Ann Charlton lodge in Redcar. I raised £32,000 for the Charity. Since then I have brought out 23 products, books, DVDs and a calendar.
I used to do a column in the club programme, then after losing that I started doing a weekly column in the local paper from 200-2021. In the 20 year period I did the article, I probably upset people at the club but they could do nothing about it. Although they tried.