Frank O’Donnell was a great player, but it was probably true to say that he never quite made it at Celtic Park.
He came from Buckhaven in Fife but tended to play in the unfortunate time around 1934 and 1935, when the team underperformed and earned the disapproval of the fans and of the Manager who kept comparing the team unfavourably with “the Celts of old”, something which hardly helped to encourage the players of the present team.
And yet Frank was a decent player, could take a goal himself, and supplied McGrory with plenty of decent balls to finish the job, but the problem was that he tended to run out of puff as well and could not pace himself.
If Jimmy McMenemy had had more of a chance with him as a trainer, it might have been a different story but along with brother Hugh, he was transferred to Preston North End, where he became a totally different player altogether, concentrating on being a centre forward and enjoying the slightly more relaxed atmosphere at Deepdale rather than the more intense Celtic Park.
He later moved to Blackpool and also played six times for Scotland, including the game at Hampden v England in 1937 which attracted the world record attendance. He died young in 1952 at the age of only 41.