One of his fondest memories of three years at Queen of the South was lifting the Challenge Cup in a dramatic final.
But when Dundee United’s Mark Durnan heads to Palmerston tonight, his aim will be to dash the Doonhamers’ hopes of going on to lift the trophy for a third time.
The 24-year-old was part of the Queens line-up when the then-Second Division outfit upset the odds to beat Premier League-bound Partick Thistle to take the trophy back to Dumfries in 2013.
An eventful final at Livingston’s Almondvale saw them survive a last-gasp penalty in extra-time before going on to beat the Jags in a shoot-out.
Durnan believes that win had plenty of beneficial spin-offs for that team, many of whom have since earned moves to bigger outfits.
And he’s convinced getting to the final this year would give United a boost.
“I was at Queens when we won the Challenge Cup, we did the double that year because we won the Second Division as well,” he said.
“Partick Thistle went on to win promotion to the Premier League that year and they were going strong at the time.
“It was a good performance to beat them in the final and it was a good year for Queen of the South.
“I’ve a wee taste of what it feels like to win this cup and it is a good one to win. It was a young side and it was a good achievement and something we all learned from.
“We went up from the Second Division and I’m sure winning the cup helped us. It gave us that winning feeling and the taste for success.”
And for Durnan, just the chance to get to a final makes tonight’s Palmerston semi a big game.
“It does not matter what cup it is, if you are in it you want to win it, so our aim is to get to the final.
“You want to win things and it’s something that is only going to help your career and development as a player.
“Especially for the younger players, it’s great experience to be at this stage of a cup. So make no mistake, this is a cup we want to win. We’re not in this just for the sake of it.”
For United, there’s no question they are going into this tie with mixed emotions.
On the plus side was their performance last time they headed south to face Queens, in early November.
That day, they produced possibly their best display of the season to run out 4-1 winners in a game they dominated from start to finish.
Two trips to Tannadice, however, have seen the Doonhamers pick up draws and after leading 3-1 late in the game last month, it could easily have been three points for Gary Naysmith’s side.
“Last time we went there it was a very good performance. I got a goal as well and things were good that day for us.
“We would take the same again but they are a good side and we have seen that in both home games we’ve had against them when they’ve come to Tannadice and got a draw.
“They’ve brought a new manager in and he’s changed things about and given them a lift. We know this will be a difficult match but we believe we can go there and win.”
And another priority is to bounce back from a very disappointing showing in last week’s 3-0 defeat at Falkirk.
“We want to get that winning mentality back. Last week was disappointing but, if we can get a win this time and get ourselves into a final, we’ll have a good feeling again.”