International Break,Part 2
Continuing our International Break relieve the tedium effort,here is a worthy follow-up to yesterday’s gem from Mahe and our new best pal,Beppe. Here,JIMMYNOTPAUL describes one of our many highlights from an up-and-down decade,the 1980s.
What is my favourite Celtic game ever, that I’ve attended? A toss of the coin, ten men won the league or Love St 86.
In 86, I stayed in Priesthill, which is not a million miles from Love St.
However, I had no intention of going to the game, I had a sizeable wager on Dancing Brave to win the 2,000 Guineas, the kind of bet, I would never dream of placing now and the race was to be run during the first half of the game. In addition, I had little faith in Celtic turning it around;it’s easily forgotten,in the midst of time, that St Mirren were a good outfit then and to win would be difficult enough, never mind winning by at least 3 goals.
And of course Hearts losing too.
My big mate, Billy Clark was having none of it though, he phoned me and said what time are we going to the game at? I told him I wasn’t going and told him why.
Don’t talk mince ya clown, was his response, or words to that effect. It’s Celtic we are built on fairy tales, today we will win it. He started to rhyme off occasions when we had been the underdog, the Coronation Cup, the 7.1 game (where Rangers were hot favourites) and, of course, Lisbon. I still refused to budge and he hung up raging at me. I thought that was that, but no, a little later a taxi pulled up at my door. Billy got out, hurry up we’ve got a game to go to.
Under pressure, I relented and went to the game, one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, even if standing in the Chernobyl rain made my hair fall out, prematurely, well that’s my excuse.
Celtic were magnificent that day and Judas scored one of the greatest Celtic team goals ever. A strange but brilliant thing, for me, happened at half time, the tannoy announcer told the crowd that Dancing Brave had won the big race, now to the best of my knowledge that normally didn’t happen. I was now starting to believe Celtic 4 up at half time Hearts 0.0 and my horse had won. It couldn’t happen could it?
The second half was a strange affair Celtic went 5 up early and then everyone, even the players, it seemed, waited and waited on events at Dens Park, no smart phones in those days, all we could rely on was a wee guy or two with a pocket radio, finally with about 8 minutes to go one of them shouted 1.0 to Dundee, we all erupted, at the same time thinking he better not have made a mistake, if you have never viewed the footage of this moment in time, I implore you to do it, Jim Stewart with the ball in his arms and then the Celtic fans start going crazy behind him, it’s truly an iconic moment in sport,soon afterwards Albert Kidd added a second for him and Dundee and the party really started, it was then that, even I believed!!.
We ran all the way home from Paisley to Nitshill, in fact we were so high that maybe we flew home, we arrived at The Royal Oak and celebrated long into the night.
I’m a lucky man that Billy believed, we all need a friend like Billy in life.
Feel free to add your memories to this series. Mail Mahe at