CELTIC STRIKER KYOGO’S STUNNING STRIKE AGAINST THE RANGERS BROKE A RECORD SET IN THE 1800s…
Kyogo’s fantastic winner on Saturday wasn’t just celebrated around the world – it also created a new piece of Celtic history.
Until 2023, the record for Celtic goals against any Ibrox side in a single calendar year was six, a figure that stood for 128 years. Celtic’s Japanese talisman has ensured that this record figure is now seven.
🇯🇵 | 𝗞𝘆𝗼𝗴𝗼 𝘃𝘀 𝗥𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲𝗿𝘀 – 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟯
Sit back, relax & watch all seven of Kyogo’s goals vs Rangers from this calendar year 📺🍿
— Everything Celtic (@aboutceltic) December 31, 2023
Sandy McMahon was an early Celtic hero. A prolific forward, he had a great scoring rate against the original Rangers. In 1895, he put the ball past the Rangers’ goalkeeper on six occasions (scored across the 1894/95 and 1895/96 seasons). This included a hat-trick in the Glasgow Cup Final – which the Celts won 5-0 – and also league goals at Celtic Park and the first Ibrox.
Those six goals in a year versus either Rangers was a record lasting for more than a century. But just behind that lay various men who scored five against the Light Blues in one year.
As a measure of McMahon’s success, he also scored five against Rangers in 1899. It included not only league strikes but also finishes which helped Celtic win the Scottish Cup and Glasgow Charity Cup. In fact, this achievement was surely unique as his goals came in four separate competitions (Scottish League, Glasgow League, Scottish Cup and Glasgow Charity Cup), the most of any player in terms of this scoring record.
Other legendary Celtic figures have also put five into the Rangers net (or goal, before nets were introduced) in the one year.
If asked to guess players that had a great scoring rate, many fans would surely pick the two Jimmys: McGrory and Quinn. Both of them scored five times in one year against the Ibrox men, Quinn in 1912 and McGrory in 1925.
In 1936, another Jimmy did the same. Delaney scored five times across the League and Glasgow Cup Final.
1957 brought a very famous result in the League Cup Final: Celtic 7 Rangers 1. Billy McPhail scored a hat-trick in this game, and added two others that year to make it five goals versus Rangers.
In 1968, Lison Lion Willie Wallace scored five against the Ibrox men in the space of just over a month. This rate of a goal every seven days versus Rangers across multiple matches is surely itself a record.
Brian McClair’s 1986 strikes against the Ibrox men helped the Bhoys secure one of their most famous league wins. The dramatic conclusion to the 1986 season was only achieved thanks to his goals in a 2-0 win and 4-4 draw.
In more recent times, Moussa Dembele gained a reputation for important goals versus the new Ibrox side. In 2016, he grabbed a perfect hat-trick (left foot, right foot, header) at Celtic Park, before adding to this achievement with winning goals in the League Cup semi-final and at Ibrox.
As well as all of these records, multiple Celtic legends have scored four times against Rangers in a year. This includes Bobby Lennox, Harry Hood and Henrik Larsson.
John Hughes (of the 1960s and 1970s Celtic team) only managed to do it three times in a year, but his was surely a unique achievement as these were all penalty kicks (in 1965).
Kyogo’s contribution in 2023 has been nothing short of remarkable. Aside from scoring seven against this Rangers, he has done it in the most significant of circumstances.
Not only has he hit the net at Celtic Park, Ibrox and Hampden Park (scoring in both nets at all grounds), his goals have played a vital role in keeping Celtic at the top of the league, and winning the League Cup too.
A truly outstanding striker (arguably the best since Larsson), he is already assured of legendary status. Many Celtic heroes – including Larsson, Dalglish and others – have not emulated scoring record against an Ibrox team. As much as anything else, this is clear evidence of the amazing talent he possesses.
Long may he continue to lead the Celtic front line!
To find out the full story of Celtic’s first League title, you can buy Matthew Marr’s debut book, ‘The Bould Bhoys! Glory to their name’. It’s available now in our HALF PRICE WINTER SALE over on Celtic Star Books.
Follow Matthew on Twitter @hailhailhistory