Celtic’s 50 Flags – Harald Brattbakk triggered off the greatest Celtic party in years

And so to that final day of 9 May 1998. The intervening week was full of tension, psychosomatic illnesses, insomnia and recurrent nightmares about mass suicides by punters jumping from the high stands at Celtic Park.

St Johnstone’s manager Paul Sturrock apparently received death threats from crackpots of both persuasions, but there was little doubt that the Perth men were enjoying their moment in the limelight, as indeed were Dundee United who could yet win the title for Celtic if they beat or even drew with Rangers at Tannadice.

The Jock Stein Stand at Celtic Park had not yet been built and the crowd was restricted to 49,000.

But there were almost as many Celtic fans outside the ground as there were in it, listening to the roar of the crowd and transistor radios.

Fortunately it all turned out well – Henrik Larsson early on and Harald Brattbakk in the latter stages, triggering off the greatest party that the Celtic support had enjoyed for many, many years.

But the predominant emotion was relief!

David Potter

Extract from Celtic How the League was Won 49 Times by David Potter.

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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