Dixie names Gazza and his uncle Sam as his idols

Rangers' Dean Shiels. Photo credit: Jeff Holmes/PA Wire.
Rangers' Dean Shiels. Photo credit: Jeff Holmes/PA Wire.

It’s probably not every day former Coleraine striker Sammy Shiels gets mentioned in the same breath as Paul Gascoigne.

Shiels has cult status around The Showgrounds.

His 29 goals in the Bannsiders Championship winning season in the First Division, which included five hat-tricks, ensured that.

Watchi ng on from the sidelines some 20 years ago was his nephew Dean.

‘Dixie’, as he is effectionately known, was a regular atThe Showgrounds during his dad Kenny’s reign in the mid-90s.

And his Uncle Sam clearly made a lasting impression on the Rangers man.

Speaking in an interview with Rangers TV, Shiels said when he was asked about his idols.

Gers fan ‘Return Of The King’ tweeted the question: “who was your footballing idol as a boy? No points for saying your dad just to keep him sweet!”

“I would probably say Paul Gascoigne and my Uncle Sam Shiels who played in the Irish league for Coleraine,” said the front man.

“He was a big goalscorer so I used to go and watch Coleraine and my Uncle Sam was a hell of a player.

“He will go down as my idol as my dad is too old and I didn’t get the chance to properly see him play.

“He tells me he was good, but he is not my football idol!”

Shiels is hoping to help Rangers win the SPFL Championship title this season having helped the club to Third Division and league One success in 2012/13 and 2013/14.

The talented playmaker has scored 31 goals in 105 appearances for the Light Blues.

The 31-year-old former Arsenal youth product has become a first team regular at Ibrox since signing for the Gers in 2012 from Kilmarnock, where he played under dad Kenny.