Celtic On This Day – 20th December – David Potter’s Celtic Diary

The late great Celtic Historian David Potter’s Celtic Diary each morning on The Celtic Star looks back at key Celtic events and matches on this day starting on 20th December 1902…


SATURDAY 20  DECEMBER 1902 – Celtic’s mediocre form continues with a 1-1 draw against Greenock Morton, the only goal of the game coming from Tommy McDermott. The attendance is poor. Concern centres on the poor form of left winger James Quinn. Some wonder whether he might make a better centre forward? It was from that position that he scored a hat-trick in last summer’s Coronation Cup.

SATURDAY 20 DECEMBER 1924 – Just where is this Celtic team heading? Today without Patsy Gallacher and Jimmy McGrory they go down to a dreadful home defeat, losing to Hamilton Accies by 0-3 and loud boos are heard all over the ground.

John Higgins scored

SATURDAY 20 DECEMBER 1958 – A respectable performance (following some shockers this season) as Celtic go to Tynecastle and earn a 1-1 draw against last season’s League Champions and this season’s Scottish League Cup winners. Bertie Auld was meant to be playing but apparently missed the team bus and arrived by car in Edinburgh. Although he was there in plenty of time, his place was given to John Higgins, and ironically, it was Higgins who scored Celtic’s equalising goal!

SATURDAY 20 DECEMBER 1969 – Just to prove that truly great men do truly great things, Jock Stein today at Parkhead is seen to take off his coat and throw it over the stretcher as Kilmarnock stalwart Frank Beattie is carried off with a broken leg. 35,000 are hushed at this act of magnanimity. Celtic win 3-1 with a penalty by Tommy Gemmell and two goals from John Hughes.

SUNDAY 20 DECEMBER 2020 – It is the most bizarre Scottish Cup final of them all. Covid restrictions have compelled it to be played in front of an empty stadium on the eve of Midwinter’s Day. It is unreal, but Celtic win the Scottish Cup for the 40th time in a penalty shoot out against Hearts who deserve a lot of credit for their comeback after Celtic were 2 up at half time with a goal from Ryan Christie and a penalty from Odsonne Edouard. Then in extra time after Leigh Griffiths scores, Hearts come back again. The Celtic hero was the little known goalkeeper Connor Hazard who saves two penalties in the shoot out before Kristofer Ajer scores the crucial one. Thus in more or less unbelievable circumstances, Celtic win their 40th Scottish Cup and their Quadruple Treble.

David Potter

About Author

I am Celtic author and historian and write for The Celtic Star. I live in Kirkcaldy and have followed Celtic all my life, having seen them first at Dundee in March 1958. I am a retired teacher and my other interests are cricket, drama and the poetry of Robert Burns.

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