HERE are some of the best Celtic moments in domestic football since Lisbon. There will be other games we have missed out but most of these will be regarded as extra-special by the Celtic support – would love to hear from you on your memories of these games. Email email@example.com
CELTIC 4 – 0 RANGERS
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL, 26 APRIL 1969
A crowd of over 132,000 filled Hampden Park for this Scottish Cup Final hammering of Rangers. Celtic included eight Lisbon Lions in the starting line-up and Rangers had Alex Ferguson in their team.
After Billy McNeill opened the scoring with a powerful header in the first few minutes Celtic went on to add two further first half goals from Bobby Lennox and George Connelly in an amazing minute just before half-time.
Stevie Chalmers put the icing on the cake in the second half adding a fourth goal and completing the rout. This match effectively signalled the end of Alex Ferguson’s Rangers career.
CELTIC 6 – 1 HIBERNIAN
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL, 6 MAY 1972
“Unlucky Hibs beaten 6-1” read the headline in The Scotsman. Over 106,000 were at Hampden in green and white to see Celtic hammer a very good Hibernian.
This was the Dixie Deans Final as Jock Stein selected a mixture of Lions and his Quality Street teams. Dixie, who had replaced Willie Wallace in the team, scored a hat-trick and Lou Macari grabbed himself a couple – for the Lions captain Billy McNeill scored one and picked up the Cup in the iconic 1970s Cup Final.
CELTIC 1 – 0 RANGERS
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL, 7 MAY 1977
Bitter sweet success for Celtic in this Scottish Cup Final – we won the Cup thanks to a converted penalty from the ever reliable Andy Lynch but we lost our superstar captain Kenny Dalglish, who was soon to head down to Liverpool to even more glory that he achieved in our beloved Hoops.
In a hard found match Rangers used their predictable tactics of kick them and lodge high balls forward. Celtic had the defensive answers with big Shuggie alongside Roddy McDonald winning everything. Pat Stanton was there to sweep everything up and when Celtic were awarded a penalty after handball on the goal-line to prevent a certain goal – Andy Lynch stepped forward and we just knew that was that. Only 54,000 turned up for this Final despite ticket sales of over 70,000. This was put down to rain and the fact that for the first time since 1955, the Scottish Cup Final was being shown live on TV.
CELTIC 4 – 2 RANGERS
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE, 21 MAY 1979
Monday nights don’t come any better than this. After a really bad winter a struggling Celtic side had a significant fixture backlog and a considerable points deficit to attempt to make up. Having gone on a winning run from around March the gap was closed and on a warm Monday night in May Celtic had one fixture to fulfil – the postponed match from early January against a Rangers side looking to win a Treble.
A goal down, then a man down and things were looking bad for this Celtic team that Billy McNeill was beginning to shape. Roared on by the Jungle and driven on by Roy Aitken Celtic scored twice to go into an unlikely lead only to surrender it almost immediately. With time running down a harmless looking George McCluskey cross was headed by Colin Jackson past Peter McCloy in the Rangers goal to put Celtic in front (Big Roy escorted the ball into the net!)
Then it happened – Murdo MacLeod attempted to either score or hit the ball as far away into the Celtic End as possible as we entered the final seconds. He failed in the latter but succeeded in the former and ten men had won the League. Unforgettable. Rangers limped past Partick Thistle a few days later to a crowd of just 2000 – the lowest ever (World Record) for a League match at Ibrox.
CELTIC 1 – 0 RANGERS
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL 10 MAY 1980
“We chased them all over Hampden” was the popular chant the following season after the Scottish Cup Final success against Rangers. The match finished goalless and went to extra time where a scuffed shot by Danny McGrain of all people was deflected past McCloy in the Rangers goal by George McCluskey.
A few Celtic fans ran onto the pitch at the final whistle and the Rangers hordes descended from their enclosure behind the goal where the cup was won and a full scale riot ensued, which would have long lasting consequences for Scottish football fans.
There would be no alcohol admitted to the terraces after this battle. Celtic won the Cup but the game was more notable for what happened after the Final whistle. Like the so-called Old F*rm shame game a few years ago, this incident occurred after a Celtic win. It was always thus. 210 arrests were made from a crowd of 70,303.
CELTIC 2 – 1 RANGERS
LEAGUE CUP FINAL, 4 DECEMBER 1982
Celtic fans endured torrential rain for the duration of this League Cup Final. Hampden offered no roof for protection – at least not at the Celtic end but that mattered little to the Celtic supporters in the rather small crowd of 55,372.
In the first half Celtic battered a Rangers team managed by John Greig and can consider themselves unlucky to be only 2 goals ahead at the internal – just as it was in 1957. The Celtic goals from Murdo McLeod and Charlie Nicholas were both a joy to behold and Billy McNeill’s side was looking like a very good Celtic team indeed.
An early second half goal by Jim Bett narrowed the score line and Celtic seemed content to see out the match and lift the cup. The Celtic fans couldn’t have been any wetter or indeed any happier. That promising Celtic side went on to throw away the league that season.
ST.MIRREN 0 – 5 CELTIC
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE, 3 MAY 1986
Hearts had literally printed the t-shirts. They wrote that song about being glorious and they travelled to Dens Park virtually certain to be crowned Scottish Champions in early May 1986.
Celtic needed to score a handful at Love Street and hope that Dundee could beat the Champions Elect and spoil the biggest party Edinburgh could possibly stage – including those that came later for Hogmanay celebrations. Celtic were wonderful in the first half – scoring four times and that was the job done in Paisley. All we could do was wait.
A Celtic fan years later went into a bar in Australia. He got talking to this other guy from Scotland but he didn’t at first know whom he was. Eventually the Celtic fan – who is instantly recognisable wherever he goes – realised who he was talking to. The Celtic fan was star stuck. He had met a real hero of his. Far away from Dens Park, in Adelaide Australia Billy Connolly had just bumped into the legendary Albert Kidd.
The Dundee player who came on as a second half substitute and with seven minutes remaining scored from close range from a rare Dundee corner kick. The roar from Paisley was probably heard in Adelaide –it was certainly heard in Dundee! Then with two minutes left – Albert Kidd, who had not scored all season long before this match, knocked in another and Celtic – now 5-0 ahead at Love Street, were Scottish Champions by a goal difference of 3.
CELTIC 2 – 1 HEARTS
SCOTTISH CUP SEMI FINAL, 9 APRIL 1988
Celtic’s birthday celebrations were severely threatened after Hearts opened the scoring in the second half after a Hearts player blatantly barged over the Celtic goalkeeper Pat Bonner. Despite this being one of the clearest fouls on a goalkeeper imaginable the resulting tap in was allowed to stand by the Man in Black and Hearts were one up. It was an honest mistake and it looked like ending Celtic’s interest in the Scottish Cup in our Centenary season.
Celtic though, were driven by the superb Paul McStay and pushed Hearts back with wave after wave of attacks and as play entered the final moments Celtic’s right back Chris Morris won a corner kick.
Hearts keeper, over anxious to get his club to the Final, flapped at the cross and the ball dropped nicely for Celtic substitute Mark McGhee who drilled home an equaliser through a crowded penalty area. The Celtic end exploded.
Play resumed and with literally seconds on the clock Frank McAvennie crossed the ball for McGhee who got the better of the hapless Henry and the ball fell to Andy Walker to smash Celtic into the Scottish Cup Final and on towards a Centenary Double.
CELTIC 2 – 1 DUNDEE UNITED
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL, 14 MAY 1988
Same script as the Semi Final producing the same mega party weekend for Celtic fans in our wonderful Centenary season. Ironically it was Celtic legend Patsy Gallagher’s grandson Kevin Gallagher who put Dundee United ahead after out pacing the Celtic defence early in the second half.
Minutes ticked away and it was looking like Celtic would have to settle for the League Championship only. Maggie Thatcher was the SFA’s VIP Guest and was getting ready to rap tangerine ribbons on the Cup when Celtic scored and then scored again in those amazing last few minutes. Frank McAvennie had had plenty of pretty special two minutes in his life up until this point but not even the bold Frankie Bhoy had experienced anything like this. Hampden in the Sun repeated. Celtic 2 Dundee United 1. Happy Birthday Celtic.
CELTIC 1-0 RANGERS
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL, 20 MAY 1989
Rangers, under the arrogance of Souness, funded by Dodgy David Murray’s chequebook, were heading for a Treble and Celtic set out to stop it. At this time you could feel the tide changing in Scottish football as Celtic, Aberdeen, Dundee United and Hearts were all weakening sides as a financially doped Rangers bought and bought big. We all know now how this was funded but at the time things were starting to look grim for Celtic.
We were about to enter the 90s and after this match, there wouldn’t be another Celtic/Rangers Scottish Cup Final for a decade. The great thing about this game on reflection is the fact that Celtic took a quick throw in that should have gone to Rangers and this eventually led to Joe Miller’s goal.
This is often used as the one and only example of a refereeing decision going Celtic’s way in these matches. Maybe Bob Valentine felt sorry for us (yeah, right!) Maybe he knew what was to come. But just like in 1988, the Celtic fans partied hard that May night in 1989. It would be a while before we could do it again.
CELTIC 2 – 0 ST. JOHNSTONE
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE, 9 MAY 1998
The week before Celtic could have won the league and stopped Rangers winning Ten in a Row if they had held on to a one goal lead at Dunfermilne. The feeling leaving that ground in Fife that Sunday afternoon was a taste of what was to come years later at Fir Park on Black Sunday. However in 1998, thankfully Celtic had one more chance.
They had to beat St Johnstone at Celtic Park. Henrik Larsson scored an early goal to get the party started but the much needed second goal did not arrive. Just after half time and with Rangers ahead in their match, St Johnstone had a great opportunity to equalise and Celtic hearts were in mouths as the ball flew inches over the Celtic crossbar.
Then up stepped Harold Bratbaak to finish off a sweet Celtic move started by Tommy Boyd, to send the Celtic supporters in Fergus McCann’s new stadium into ecstasy. Wim Jansen had done it. He had stopped them doing ten. And for Celtic fans, it was time to party again.
CELTIC 6 – 2 RANGERS
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE, 27 AUGUST 2000
Martin O’Neill had described Rangers as the benchmark. He had spoken to each player in the dressing room before the match to make sure they each believed that they could overcome Rangers that day and that season.
In context this match is even more special given the level of cheating that we now know was happening behind the scenes at Ibrox at this time. There is no denying the quality of player on display at Celtic Park that day. Chris Sutton, a big money Celtic signing from Chelsea, put Celtic ahead and we raced into a 3-0 lead, with Henrik missing a great chance to make it 4. Rangers pulled one back on the stroke of half time though but things were only just getting started.
Henrik’s chip goal – one of the finest ever to be scored by a Celtic player was followed by a powerful headed goal. Rangers got another consolation before Chris Sutton finished the way he started by tapping in another goal in the final seconds. This was a demolition of an extravagantly assembled Rangers side.
RANGERS 0 – 3 CELTIC
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE, 29 APRIL 2001
What wasn’t to like? Henrik Larsson scored his 50th goal of the season at Ibrox and two memorable goals at either side by Lubo Moravcik gave us one of our most enjoyable trips ever to Govan while playing the old Rangers.
A greedy young substitute – Shaun Maloney – stopped Henrik adding a fourth near the end but by that time three stands were all but empty and the Celtic party was in full swing. Their team had tax dodgers even at that stage and it was left to the bargain basement Celtic stars – Henrik and Lubo with a combined transfer cost of less than £1M – to show real class.
Hugh Keevins had said this of Lubo “I don’t know what I find more laughable; the fact that Celtic cannot find £500,000 from their biscuit tin to sign a proven talent like John Spencer, or the fact that they then spent £300,000 on one of Dr. Jo’s old pals, the unknown Lubomir Moravcik!” Who still listens to these people?
CELTIC 2 – 1 RANGERS
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE, 16 APRIL 2008
Celtic were chasing the financially doped Rangers for the title but had to win to keep our hopes alive. Shunsuke Nakamura scored his first goal against Rangers and what a screamer it was, to give Celtic a deserved lead.
In the second half Walter Smith sent on the loathsome Nacho Novo to try to grab an equaliser against the run of play and the horrible little lowlife duly delivered catching Artur Boruc out as the Celtic goalkeeper got his angles all wrong.
Celtic pushed forward and with twenty minutes remaining another Nakamura shot was stopped on the line by the outstretched hands of Carlos Cuellar. After the Rangers defender was sent off Scott McDonald tamely hit the Celtic penalty and an injured Allan McGregor was able to dive to his left to save.
Celtic’s championship challenge was all but over as play entered the final minute. Gary Caldwell showed great composure to summon up one final assault on the Rangers goal. His precise pass to the head of Scott McDonald resulted in the little striker heading across goal for the flying Dutchman Jan Vennegoor of Heselink to head past the substitute goalkeeper Alexander to put Celtic ahead.
The Championship would be won at Tannadice by another Hesselink header but the stuffing was knocked out of Rangers that night. How we celebrated!
CELTIC 3 – 0 RANGERS
SCOTTISH PREMIER LEAGUE , 29 APRIL 2012
This was the last ever Celtic versus Rangers match as the Ibrox club were about to be liquidated. Celtic dominated them and easily won the match by three clear goals. Gary Hooper will go down in Celtic history for scoring the last ever goal against Rangers. This game was more an occasion than an important match, The Green Brigade produced their best ever banners to see Rangers out the door of Scottish football and the LIQUDATION LIQUIDATION NA NA NA chats were just something to behold. Celtic fans had endured the honest mistakes, the dodgy dealings, EBT scams the lot – and here they were in complete and utter triumph, while the defeated Rangers army sang their sectarian songs of hate. But it was over Celtic had won.
CELTIC 5 -1 THE RANGERS
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP 10 SEPTEMBER 2016
They had arrived ‘back’ after their journey through the lower leagues – hilariously delayed after losing a play-off to Motherwell by 6-1 – and they had all the old arrogance of the old club. Joey Barton had been signed and they were going to put Celtic in their place.
Leigh Griffiths failed a fitness test so new striker Moussa Dembele led the Celtic line and became the first Celtic player since Harry Hood to score a hat-trick against a club playing out of Govan. Scotty Sinclair and Stuart Armstrong also scored signalled their own ‘Skelping credentials and Joey Barton was left kicking beach balls in the Rangers net as Celtic ran out 5-1 winners. It was Brendan Rodgers’ first taste of the Glasgow Derby and he has gone on to enjoy a remarkably successful record against this latest Ibrox club.
THE RANGERS 1 – 5 CELTIC
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP 29 APRIL 2017
Celtic fans partied from start to finish in the Free Broomloan as Scotty Sinclair got things started converting a penalty after Paddy Roberts had been up-ended. Leigh Griffiths bulleted a second in before half-time but the truth was Celtic could have had many more goals in that opening 45 minutes. In the second half though the floodgates looked like opening but Celtic settled for just three more with McGregor, Boyata and a wonderful fifth from Lustig sending the Celtic supporters wild with delight. The site of their empty stands was a joy to behold.
CELTIC 2 -1 ABERDEEN
SCOTTISH CUP FINAL 27 MAY 2017
Celtic were going for the Treble and with it an historic Invincible campaign. Jonny Hayes, now of course at Celtic, gave Aberdeen the lead but this Celtic team would not accept that. For kick-off Celtic moved the ball around beautifully, no Aberdeen player touched the ball until Stuart Armstrong shot from the edge of the area to level the scores.
In the second half Celtic increased the pressure as Aberdeen held on grimly for extra time. It looked like they had managed that but with seconds remaining and with a bolt of lightening hitting the Hampden turf just a few metres away from Tom Rogic, who gathered the ball, drifted past three defenders and from the tightest of angles at the Celtic end, scored the most remarkable winner. Celtic men cried.It was remarkable, it was a fairytale Celtic moment.
THE RANGERS 2 – 3 CELTIC
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP, 11 MARCH 2018
The first BEAUTIFUL SUNDAY. A Boyata error in the first few minutes gave them the lead and they thought that their title challenge was on. Tom Rogic though had other ideas as he curled in a lovely equaliser but Rangers were soon ahead again and Ibrox was bouncing. Half time approached and Scott Brown was fouled as he cleared up the park – the Ibrox stands loved that but had failed to notice that the ball had found Moussa Dembele. The Rangers TV commentator was screaming ‘Wits the goalie Daein’ Tom?” as the French striker calming lobbed Foderingham to level the scores.
In a tense second half it seemed that the advantage was swinging to the home side when Jozo Simunovic was red carded by Willie Collum for the use of an elbow. But Brendan Rodgers reacted brilliantly by introducing a second striker in Odsonne Edouard and going two up top. And how it worked! Dembele found French Eddie and he curled. magnificent effort into the far corner to give the man Celtic a remarkable 3-2 win. This was the day that the stuffing was knocked out of them, this was Beautiful Sunday.
CELTIC 5 -0 THE RANGERS
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP 29 APRIL 2018
Celtic lost the previous weekend at Hibs so had to wait for the visit of The Rangers to wrap up the title. The scoreline was 5-0 with half an hour to go so why Celtic took the foot off their throats we’ll never know. The iconic 7-1 scoreline from 1957 against the old Rangers was never likely to be repeated as that would have meant them scoring. However Celtic could and should have reached that total when the opportunity was there.
Edouard scored twice in the first half and James Forrest got the third just before the interval – his first against any Rangers team. Tom Rogic and Callum McGregor got the second half goals – McGregor’s fifth coming in 53 minutes. We should have piled the on but it was a league winning day and another Beautiful Sunday.
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