FORMER Scotland football star Gordon Durie was threatened at knife-point during a terrifying carjacking attempt in Fife.
The 56-year-old ran for his life, shouting for help as he was pursued by a masked man demanding his car keys who was shouting, “Don’t be a f****** hero”.
Violent criminal John Rodden, just out of jail, was pointing a kitchen knife with a six-inch blade at the shocked driver during the botched robbery.
Durie ran from his car leaving the keys on the passenger seat but Rodden did not see them and chased after the ex-footballer still demanding the keys.
The victim managed to get away and Rodden, still not spotting the keys in the car, left empty-handed.
The one-time Rangers, Chelsea, Tottenham and Hibs striker had just finished watching his son Scott play in a football match in Cardenden and had been accompanied by his grandchildren moments before the attack.
Rodden, from Drumchapel, Glasgow, had been living in Fife after being released from jail after serving a five-year sentence for robbing a service station when armed with an axe.
Durie was about to drive home to Uddingston when Rodden struck and attempted to steal his Volkswagen Tiguan.
Rodden, 38, appeared at Dunfermline Sheriff Court by video-link from Perth prison.
He admitted that on January 15 at Dundonald Park, Cardenden, he assaulted Gordon Durie, presented a knife towards him, demanded his car keys, chased him and attempted to rob him of his motor car.
Depute fiscal Zahra Bhatti told the court: “At around 3pm Gordon Durie went to watch his son play football at Dundonald Park in Cardenden, along with his daughter and grandchildren.
“At around 4.45pm he walked back to his car, a Volkswagen Tiguan, which was parked opposite the bus stop just before Bluebell Gardens.
“Mr Durie was planning to drive back home to Uddingston and his son was to take the others home. They walked with him to his car to transfer the children’s car seats.
“While walking to his car, Mr Durie saw the accused, who was not known to him, standing at the bus stop, wearing a black face covering, obscuring most of his face. At that point he didn’t think anything of this.
“The others left and when Mr Durie got into the driver’s seat he heard the back door being opened. He was startled. This was then slammed shut and the driver’s door was then opened.
“He then saw the accused standing over him with a kitchen knife with a blade of around six inches in length. He shouted, ‘Don’t be a f****** hero, get out the f****** car’.
“Mr Durie got out of the car and began backing away, at which point the accused got into the driver’s seat and then back out of the car again.
“The accused shouted, ‘Where’s the f****** keys, give me the f****** keys’. He was still holding the knife.
“Mr Durie had left the keys on the front passenger seat but told him he had the keys, while backing off in the direction of the football ground.
“At that point, the accused started to run towards him shouting, ‘Give me the f****** keys’. Mr Durie turned and ran, shouting ‘Help, help’. He was terrified.
“After a short distance, he looked over his shoulder and saw the accused stop and walk away at the residential part of the street.
“He walked back towards the bus stop and was lost to sight. Mr Durie phoned his son and when he arrived, they both walked back over to the car. The door was still open and the keys were still inside.
“Both went into the clubhouse at the football ground and they contacted the police. At around 5.28pm police attended. Mr Durie was visibly upset and shaken.
“The following day police seized CCTV from a property on the street, which showed part of the incident and the accused’s movements afterwards. The knife recovered from a garage in a neighbouring street and the accused’s DNA was found on the handle.
“At around 2.15pm the accused was arrested. While being taken back to the police station he was removed from the vehicle due to a medical concern.
“While the officers were speaking to him to ascertain whether treatment was required, the accused said, ‘I don’t care, I’m going back to jail. I have just done five years and I just tried to steal a boy’s car but he ran away with the keys’.
Defence solicitor Alison Miller described her client’s actions as “poor decision making” and said he had never intended to use the knife. She added that he has now written a letter to his victim apologising.
Sheriff Charles Macnair called for reports and adjourned the case until April 19. He said it was possible he may remit the matter to the High Court.
The sheriff commented: “He has a record of very serious violence. Whether he intended to use the knife was neither here nor there and that certainly would not have been known to Mr Durie.”
In January 2017, Rodden was jailed for five years at the High Court in Glasgow for a robbery at a Clydebank garage when he threatened a worker there with an axe.
Gordon Durie was brought up in Fife and went to Inverkeithing High School.
He played 43 times for Scotland, scoring seven goals. He played at Euro ’96 and the World Cup Finals in France in 1998.
His club career started at East Fife and took him to Hibs, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Rangers and Hearts. He later had a spell as a coach at Rangers.
His son Scott currently plays for Dundonald Bluebell.