Season Diary 2002-2003

June 2002


New Additions For Killie In June

The SPL TV deals fall through, and Killie have to juggle their budget to accommodate less revenue coming in, and therefore Tommy Johnson among others cannot be afforded. Jim McSherry departs as commercial manager- Here Midfielder Antonio Calderon leaves Kilmarnock by mutual consent. Killie head to Italy for their pre-season warm-up's & then to Ireland it is announced. Most of the nation becomes Brazil fans, as they take on Ingerland in the 2002 World Cup. Killie then sign midfielder Stevie Fulton.

July 2002



Monty Returns To Rugby Park

Killie legend Ray Montgomerie returns to Rugby Park as the new Public Relations/Matchday Manager - Here.

Gary McSwegan is taken on trial till Dec - Here Kevin McGowne becomes the latest cup hero to exit Rugby Park - Here  Killie win the Scottish Brewers Challenge Cup at Annan when they beat Queen of the South 4-2 on penalties after a 0-0 draw. Kris Boyd struck woodwork twice, during regulation play, for Killie.

Killie then an finish an unbeaten preseason with matches Vs: QoS 2-1, Lisburn Dist 2-0, Glentoran 1-1, Sheffield Weds 2-1 & Morton 3-0.

Aug 2002

Swegs in Action Vs Rangers

Killie handed in their resignation from the SPL at the league's headquarters in Hampden Park, the start of a two-year notice period. The ten had wanted the Old Firm to scrap the existing 11-1 voting majority in favour of  8-4, but the Glasgow duo would not agree. Killie open the season with a creditable 1-1draw with Rangers at home, with Andy McLaren  coming off the bench to save Killie. Jim Jefferies signs Gary Locke  - Here  Up next for Killie were the Arabs away and won 2-1, thanks to goals from Dargo  & Boyd, both of whom came on as subs.  Forth placed Killie then hosted Motherwell and had 3 men sent off (McLaren, Locke & San Juan) while losing 0-3. Killie left the field that day to standing ovation, and out-played Well for the last 30 mins of the match trailing 0-1 with 9 men. Kris Boyd  is named SPL young player of the month for Aug as his 2 goals helped Killie grab 4 away points with a 1-0 win at Livingston & 1-1 draw with Hearts.

Sep 2002

Peter Canero Scores The Winner Vs Thistle

Peter Canero scores for Killie in a 1-0 win at home over Partick Thistle, to start Sept in fine fashion, however the writing was starting to be on the wall when it took a Barry McLaughlin goal in stoppage time to salvage a 2-2 draw at home to Aberdeen, after Alan Mahood had opened the scoring.  This would begin a seven game win-less run for Killie. Away losses at Hibs 0-2 & Celtic 0-5 are recorded while also being dumped out the CIS Cup on pen's by Airdrie Utd after a 0-0 120 mins! Killie are really missing Andy McLaren & Craig Dargo at the moment as they are both out hurt. Off the field Bill Costley, a former  Kilmarnock chairman and lifelong supporter, resigns from the board along with  fellow directors Jim Murdoch and Brian Sage, after disagreements over the directions of the club.

Oct 2002

Boyd Helps Killie Get Their Only Oct Point

Only 1 point out of nine is gained in Oct as Killie fall 1-2 at Dundee despite short term contract signing Sammy Boutal scoring on his debut. Kris Boyd then grabbed Killie's only point of the month as Killie comeback twice Vs 3rd placed Dunfermline to draw 2-2 at Rugby park. Greg Shields also scores his first Killie goal in that match. Killie then finish the month at Ibrox as the club start their 2nd set of 11 fixtures, and are destroyed 1-6 by Rangers, while Stevie Fulton grabs his first goal for the club.

Nov 2002

Killie Applaud Their Fans After The Win At Motherwell

A strange start to Nov see Killie lose one, then win one with last min goals being scored! The first was a cruel 1-2 loss to Dundee Utd at home with former Killie-Striker Jim McIntyre shooting through Gordon Marshall's legs in injury time, after Stevie Fulton has tied the game up for Killie. Now in 8th place Killie went to bottom of the league Motherwell looking to avenge their 9 man loss to Well from Aug. Again it was Kris Boyd to the rescue, as Killie win 1-0. Killie then go on to record 3 more  SPL wins in their next 5 outings to take them back up to 6th! Livingston are beaten for a second time while Killie wear their "lucky" 3rd red tops 2-0 at Rugby Park, with Paul Di Giacomo opening the scoring for Killie and sub Gary McSwegan grabbing his first Killie goal into injury time. Killie finish Nov with 2 bad results at home 0-1 to the ever-jammy Hearts, and a dismal 0-3 drubbing at Partick. Some good news that both Craig Dargo and Andy Mclaren are both due back after injuries have kept them each out for the last 7-8 matches. 

Dec 2002

Gary McSwegan Scores Killie's Winner At Aberdeen

Nobody knows why the SPL schedule Killie to travel to Aberdeen on a Tuesday night of all things, but Baz & co duly aboard the "party bus" and a great time is had by all of the 250 fans in attendance as Gary McSwegan scores the matches only goal as Killie win 1-0. The schedule now brings 3 home games on the trot with Dundee being first who were dispatched 2-0 with goals from Stevie Fulton & Kris Boyd. This marks Killie's 4th & final time of wearing their "lucky" 3rd choice red tops, Killie's record in red was; played 4, won 3, drew 1, & lost 0. One disturbing note for the Dundee game was the attendance of only 4,810, which represented Killie's lowest SPL crowd in over 10+ years!  Kris Boyd, Stevie Murray, Craig Samson and Sean Dillon are all named to the Scotland Under 21 team to Portugal from 6th-14th January. Pint sized striker and former killiefc.com player of the year Craig Dargo has just signed a two year extension to his contract ending speculation that he would be offloaded in the winter break before his current deal ran out.- Here Champions Celtic were next to come calling and even though they hit the woodwork on 4 occasions, it was Killie who held on for a deserved point, after Andy McLaren had opened the scoring in the 1-1 draw. Killie's great Dec run continues with a fine 2-1 win over Hibs at home, with our ex-jambos "doing em in"! Fulton scores the winner with 2 mins remaining, after McSwegan opens the scoring. It is announced after the match that Gary will be offered an extension to his short-term contract, thru the end of the season. Killie finish up Dec with a fine 2-0 away win at Dunfermline on Boxing Day with the duo of McSwegan & super-sub Boyd grabbing the goals against the 3rd place Pars.
To close year Killie fall 0-1 at home to Rangers, but this is not enough to stop Jim Jefferies winning the Dec SPL manager of the month award. Killie finish the year in 6th position, 4pts out of 3rd place in the SPL, & 7 points ahead of Dundee in 7th!

Jan 2003

Greg Shields Stops Billy Dodds in the Years First Game

Before the SPL winter shut-down Killie travel to Dundee to take on the Arabs on Jan 2nd, and it took a last min Jim McIntyre header to salvage a point for them in a 2-2 draw, in which United "gifted" goals to both Peter Canero & Andy McLaren. Gary McCutcheon is free'ed to join Dumbarton full time, where he had been on loan. Killie get Motherwell in the 3rd round of the Cup at home.  Shaun Dillion is named Dec SPL Young Player of the Month. Jose Quitongo, Samuel Boutal and Robbie Henderson did not get their contracts renewed by Killie. The youth squad has added James Hamell and Robert Campbell while Chris Boyle was been given a contract extension. Colin Stewart  returned from his loan at Queens Park. Ally "Bully" Mitchell  is released and he signs with St Mirren. Ally was the last remaining member of the 1997 Cup Winning squad. Killie play to a 0-0 draw in a closed match with Raith Rovers, as they prepared for the upcoming Motherwell cup tie. During the club's AGM a near-£2m loss is announced. The Half-time draw incident from the Sheffield Weds match (way back in July of 2002) was not even mentioned, however the press had a "field day" with this topic! The month is closed out with both the Motherwell Cup & SPL matches being decided by penalty kicks for each team 0-1 in the cup & 1-0 in the SPL. Kris Boyd scored for Killie from the spot with their first awarded penalty in a year (since TJ scored Vs the Huns last Jan!). Colin Meldrum also makes is debut for the season as Gordon Marshall has undergone a shoulder operation, and will be out 4-5 weeks.

Feb 2003

Boyd Celebrates His Goal At Livingston

Colin Meldrum starts again for Killie and he keeps a 2nd consecutive "clean-sheet", as we thump Livingston 4-0, and move into 4th place in the SPL. Goals came from McLaren (2), Canero & Boyd (his 9th of the season). Jesus San Juan is released by the club. Kris Boyd picks up his 2nd SPL young player of the month award of the season, winning the award for Jan. Club agree to the "Killie 125" season ticket scheme for 2003-04. Killie then travel to Tynecastle and lose 0-3, in a match that Jefferies said "we just did not compete". This was a big disappointment to the 2,000+ Killie faithful that traveled through to Edinburgh, to see if Killie could pull within one point of Hearts for 3rd place. Killiefc.com on Feb 13th "host" an "official" on-line chat with manager Jim Jefferies & CEO David Heath, a transcript can be found Here.  Killie's next match was postponed at home to Thistle, with the SPL threatening to fine clubs that did not appear to have taken "adequate precautions" to avoid weather related "call-off's". Peter Canero then scores (again) to give Killie a 1-0 home win over the Jag's, before he headed off to Turkey to join the Scotland "Future" squad.

March 2003

Kris Boyd Scores the Equaliser Vs the Pars

Killie start March with great news, that leading scorer (9 goals), 19 year old Kris Boyd has signed a 3 year contract extension to keep him at Rugby Park till 2006. Killie then host the Dons and win 2-0, with goals coming from Gary McSwegan & Peter Canero. This represented Killie's 3 consecutive home SPL win on the trot, with "stand-in" keeper Colin Meldrum now having clean-sheets in 4 of his 5 starts. The same Canero McSwegan "duo" come to Killie's rescue the following week in helping Killie ensure a top SPL 6 place finish with a 2-2 draw at Dundee, after trailing by 2 goals at the half. Melly also "stands on his head" in stopping 3 "one on one's" in the second half of that Dee match. Killie complete their 3 March SPL fixtures unbeaten when super-sub Kris Boyd came to the rescue the following week as he headed home for Killie in a home 1-1 draw with the Pars, for his 10th goal of the season. Poor Greg Shields (left) had opened the scoring for the Pars with Killie's first & hopefully only O.G. of the season, in front of a 10 year low SPL crowd at Rugby Park of 4,021, which had a Sunday 1PM kick off and was broadcast live on BBC, before the CIS Cup Final. To keep fresh Killie play 3 friendly's in Ireland where they go unbeaten.

April 2003

Gary McDonald Gets His First Killie Goal Vs Hibs

Killie destroy Hibs 6-2 at Rugby Park with Gary McSwegan netting four times for Killie! Young Gary McDonald scored his first goal for Killie to open the scoring and "super-sub" Kris Boyd finished the scoring from the spot in the final min. Colin Stewart also makes his first team debut in goal Vs Hibs! Former manager Bobby Williamson looks to be in serious trouble after getting hammered by his "old charges". Next was a trip to Parkhead on Sun the 13th, and Killie lose 0-2. Big Marsh returns in goal as Colin Meldrum's season is now over as he chipped an ankle bone in Ireland 2 weeks earlier.
The split came after the Celtic match and the first of our "Final Five" fixtures saw return to Dens Park (on a Sunday again!) Thanks to a Chris Innes goal Killie  won 1-0.  Shock news prior to Euro Crunch game with Hearts is that David Heath our CEO will be leaving in July More.

May 2003

Hoody in Action Vs the Tarts

Killie open May by beating Hearts 1-0 with former Hearts man Gary McSwegan heading home an Andy McLaren cross to ensure that Killie move to within 4 points of Hearts with 3 matches left to play and keep their slim Euro hopes alive. It then announced that up to 10 players will be released at the end of the season.....inc: Gordon Marshall, Colin Stewart & youngsters Jaconelli, Gold, Chris Boyle, McGlinchey, Coyle, and number 50, David "the Doomed" Woodison. More Killie then head to Ibrox to play Rangers who need to win by 2 clear goals to move back atop the SPL. Killie are defeated 0-4. Also during the week on a positive note, Stevie "Baggio" Fulton wins the 3rd annual www.killiefc.com Player of the Year Award. New contracts are also reported to have been offered to Andy McLaren (who the Pars want also!) & Gary McSwegan. Former manager from the early 80's Jim Clunie passes away. Killie's UEFA cup challenge effectively comes to an end the following week after they could only salvage a 2-2 draw at Dunfermline. Gary McDonald and Kris Boyd in the 91st min got the Killie goals. Boyd also won this site's "Young Player of the Year" award this week it was announced, and he also would go on to finish as the teams top scorer with 11 goals. Killie would then host Celtic in their last game of the season, with the SPL championship on the line, between the Old Firm. Rugby Park will be a "sell-out", perhaps in more ways than one as Killie are being accused by many of being too accommodating to the visiting "hoards"! The last week of the season saw killiefc.com's "2nd annual day oot". The kicking Squirrels beat Bazcelona 5-3. Baz can be seen on the left at the bottom (below). Prior to Celtic match Gary McSwegan signs a one contract from Killie. The final day of the SPL season arrives and Killie are beaten 0-4, but Celtic's win was not enough as Rangers won the title winning by 5 goals on the final day. Many Killie fans were not happy, not so much with result of the Celtic game, BUT the handling of the "segregation" (or lack there of!), as the Club, Rock Steady & the police failed to get "on the same page" in how to have best handled the large traveling support from Glasgow, many of whom ended up sitting next to Killie fans in the home sections of the crowd. 

In closing Jim Jefferies Post Match Celtic Comments...he says...."I told the players they have had a magnificent season”

Form Guide

2002 - 2003







First 11







Second 11







Third 11







Post Split







Final 5







Season Totals








Go to: Season 2001-02 2003-04

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