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17th September 1966: Celtic v Rangers League – Part One

15th September 1966

Two days prior to the match, there were the usual warnings in the press about fan behaviour etc. Both clubs, the Scottish Football League, the police and politicians all had their say. As a result of previous meetings between the various parties, it had been agreed that the contest would be an all-ticket affair with the ground limit set at 70,000.

Apart from that, the press reports were very complimentary about Celtic’s performance against Dunfermline, although from the point of view of the Fifers, it must have been very galling to read the comments about their having no chance of pulling back the deficit in the second leg. Probably true….but pretty dispiriting at the same time.

As for the players, we came in to do a fairly easy session, where the atmosphere was good and full of expectation. (It is not just the fans who feel the pressure of a Celtic/Rangers clash) However, the Boss kept us working away and as a shooting session always brings a bit of cheer to any training routine, that is exactly what we did.
Most surprisingly, when the team for the Reserve League clash against Rangers on the Friday night went up, my name wasn’t on it. Was I being included in the pool for the first-team match…..or was I dropped from the reserve side too?

16th September 1966

A light session on the track, no mention of the team, merely a comment that we all had to report the following day for the match. I kept my mouth shut but to be perfectly honest, if I was not going to be in the team or even on the bench on the Saturday, I would have preferred to play in the reserve side. However, one must not rock the boat! Still, if you had told me then that in 8 months time I would be playing in a European Cup final, I would have burst out laughing!

At the ground, the atmosphere was quite calm but out and about round town, it was quite a different matter. Most of the guys could keep away from the general public at a time like this but when I went to the Dental Hospital, as I did on the Friday before the game, I had to park some distance away so I met fans from both sides on my trip from car to workplace and my goodness, what a tizzy they were getting themselves into!
“Make sure you beat this lot” was the invariable retort from the Celtic guys; “I hope you get stuffed!” was the rather blunt response from the Rangers contingent. Glasgow at its best!
The Boss might not have spoken to us but he obviously did speak to the press, as the evening papers had this quote and these headlines : “We will not name a team till just before the start”.

Cautious Stein Last-Minute Celtic!

 

Celtic Boss Asks for a ‘ Special Effort’

 

Reserve Match
This match was played at Ibrox on the Friday evening. Both teams contained some well-known names ;
RangersMartin, Wood, Mathieson, Watson, Jackson, Sutherland, Henderson, Willoughby, Reid, Jardine, Setterington.
CelticMartin, Young, McCarron, Cattenach, Cushley, Brogan, Macari, Connelly, Quinn, Gallagher, Taylor.

Unfortunately, we lost 2-3, with our goals coming from George Connelly and a Davie Cattenach penalty, theirs from Willie Henderson (2) and Denis Setterington.


Lucky Man
Donald Campbell may leave hospital today after observation following his miraculous escape when his Bluebird car crashed at Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah.
Campbell was driving at dawn yesterday in a test run for an attempt on the record of 394.2 mph when the giant turbo-powered car swung out of control and somersaulted for several hundred yards.

A Night to Remember
‘That unique moment of truth….that glorious ecstatic moment of victory….came majestically in the Kelvin Hall last night as 10,000 thrill-maddened fans rose as one to acclaim the courage and the greatness of a young Scot.
Chic Calderwood, his face bloody from a brutal gash over his left eye, stood the conqueror, hand upraised, over Willie Pastrano, of America, after 10 of the most dramatic rounds the ring is ever likely to produce’. (Quote from a morning paper)

Top Ten
The Beatles this week gained the top spot in the American charts for the first time since the uproar over John Lennon’s remarks about Christianity. The top ten are –
1 Yellow Submarine Beatles
2 You Can’t Hurry Love Supremes
3 Sunshine Superman Donovan
4 See You in September Happenings
5 Sunny Bobby Heb
6 Bus Stop Hollies
7 Cherish Association
8 Summer in the City Lovin’ Spoonful Summer
9 Wouldn’t It Be Nice Beach Boys
10 Guantanamera Sandpipers