Morton kit-man Andy Bryan about to get busier in Championship

By Kenny CrawfordBBC Sport Scotland
Andy Bryan is starting his 41st season of service at Morton
Andy Bryan is starting his 41st season of service at Morton

Stocking up toilets with loo roll. The job remit of Greenock Morton kit-man knows no bounds.

But it's just how this recently-promoted Scottish Championship outfit have to operate, and there are few complaints from those putting in the hours.

Andy Bryan is embarking on his 41st season at the Cappielow side - a lengthy period of varied service which began as ball-boy before spending the last 15 years as kit-man.

"Driving the bus to away games; waiting to lock up at night. A club this size, everyone just mucks in," Bryan told BBC Scotland.

"This morning I was in putting toilet rolls in some of the toilets - you just do it. There are four or five office staff during the week and we just muck in and get on with it."

That's exactly what Morton had to do on the pitch last season; get on with it.

Relegated to the third tier of Scottish football after a humiliating 10-2 loss to Hamilton Accies the previous campaign, Jim Duffy came in as manager to try and get them back up at the first attempt.

Morton won League One by two points in 2014-15
Morton won League One by two points in 2014-15

'Ton finished two points clear at the top of League One and the champions' flag will be unfurled at Cappielow on Saturday before their opener against Falkirk.

But with all due respect to the Bairns, bigger games in the Championship await Morton.

"We're back in the big-time," continued Bryan. "It's a mini Premiership to me with Rangers, Hibs and St Mirren there.

"I didn't realise it was so long since we'd played Rangers here - I think it's maybe 20 seasons or something. I can't wait to see the away end open again and have it a wee bit fuller.

"Sometimes there's been more seagulls sitting on the roof than there's been punters recently."

One highlights of the coming campaign for Morton is a renewal of their competitive tussle with Paisley side St Mirren - located 15 miles away from their Greenock base, but perhaps just as well, given the feisty relationship between both sets of supporters.

They'll play each other four times over the course of the season, so how many does Bryan reckon will go in Morton's favour?

"Three," he smiled. "I'd take that in a minute if you gave me it now!

"To be honest - staying up is the aim. It would be a little bit silly to look any further than that."

It'll be a busy season down Cappielow way. More toilet roll required.