Back in 2002, a caller to talkSPORT wanted the goalkeeper in the squad owing to his excellent performances for the Tynecastle side.
On being told Niemi was Finnish, the caller replied: “He’s no finished! He’s only 28.”
It has become a hugely popular meme within Scottish football and part of its culture.
However, in this writer’s eyes, it reached the point of saturation a long time ago, a view shared by Niemi, who played 106 times for Hearts across two and a half years.
"I’ve heard it a million times,” he said with the exasperated tone of someone who would be happy to never hear about it again.
"Always when I speak to people in the UK, even in Finland nowadays, someone always mentions it. It was funny at the time but come on…”
Niemi, in an interview with CoffeeFriend.co.uk, revealed he spoke to the caller a few years ago when he attended a Hearts game.
He said: “I was in one of the lounges before the game and I guy came to me and said ‘have you heard about it’.
"Yes, I’ve heard about it, here we go again [exaggerated laughter].
"It was actually his friend who made the phone call and he called his friend, I spoke to the guy. He said ‘sorry, you’ve probably heard about it’.
“I said ‘yes, every year it comes up’. He said it was just a joke and he never thought that the radio would buy it.
"It was a good sketch but enough’s enough.”