Celtic’s Treble Yell – Kieran Gallagher

Now that the dust has settled on last weekend’s triumphant victory over Rangers to ensure that the Viaplay League Cup was heading back to ‘Paradise’, I thought I’d share some of my own experiences of cup football being a young Celtic supporter.

Over the last few years, Celtic have been going through one of our greatest periods of success in the 135-year unbroken history of the club. From the ‘treble treble’ under Brendan Rodgers, to our current fast-paced attacking football under Ange Postecoglou, it is fair to say we have been witnessing our fair share of glory in recent years.

Celtic goalscorers Aiden McGeady (left) and Darren O’Dea celebrate with the trophy after winning the League Cup Final 2-0 against Rangers on 15 March 2009

Personally, the first cup final I can properly remember supporting Celtic would have been the 2-0 victory over Rangers in the 2008/9 season. Darren O’Dea and Aiden McGeady were the scorers on the day, and although we had to wait until extra time to break the deadlock, it is a game that has stuck with me throughout the years.

Being only eight years old, it was my first time attending Hampden to watch a Celtic match and this era of football is the one in which my love for Celtic, and football in general, began to blossom.

Gordon Strachan as Celtic manager with players like Nakamura, Boruc, Brown, and McGeady taking to the field every week is the team that invigorated my love for Celtic.

Conversely, Walter Smith as Rangers boss, with his well-organised team is the first team I can genuinely remember from the other side of Glasgow, and even at a young age, I understood how important the matches against Rangers were.

My fondest memory of cup football following Celtic has got to be the 2-1 victory over Aberdeen back in 2017. Tom Rogic’s extra-time winner to secure Celtic a domestic treble without losing a game is a feat that most likely will never be matched by a Celtic side – or indeed any British side – in my lifetime.

The feeling of adulation I have for that Celtic team is one that is only matched by Postecoglou’s current side, and that game is one which I will never forget.

The downside of Celtic’s cup performances in recent years would have to be our form in Europe. Celtic haven’t won a European knockout tie in over 15 years, which for a club the size of Celtic, is simply not good enough.

Celtic have had many good results in Europe in recent years however, holding Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City to a draw home and away, as well as beating the likes of Lazio, Leipzig, and of course, Barcelona but overall, it would be rewarding for Celtic fans to see the club go far in a European competition, and it is something I think Ange himself will try extra hard to rectify next season.

Celtic has provided us with countless happy memories over the years in cup competitions, the most recent victory over Rangers in the Viaplay League Cup final being up there with the very best. With Ange and the ‘bhoys’ nine points clear and in the quarter-finals of the Scottish Cup, things don’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.

Kieran Gallagher

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