Football Without Fans – Bobby Murdoch Rutherglen Vogue CSC

Bobby Murdoch Rutherglen Vogue CSC…

Bobby Murdoch Rutherglen Vogue CSC began with a group of like-minded individuals who had a passion and desire to support Celtic.

In an interview with founding member George Lappin in 2012, George stated, ‘This was a group of young guys who wanted to be part of something built within the Celtic tradition. I like to think that this played a large part in us growing to become a prominent club.’

Bobby Murdoch gave George his Lisbon jacket, and George has stated that on his passing, the jacket will be passed to Celtic for their museum. Kenny and Jack McCann were also founding members. At the time, John McCaughey’s mother would give them pieces for the bus in case anyone was hungry.

They would attend games on an unregistered supporters bus that left from a pub in Rutherglen called the Glencairn Bar, owned by the Givens family from Ireland. The pub closed, and the search began for a new location to call home.

Eventually, they gradually migrated to The Vogue, although at that time, The Vogue was not a football-oriented pub. Around 1965, they started going to away games by car, then minibus, and in 1968, a coach was required. They joined the CSA, becoming an officially registered club. The club went on to leave the CSA in the mid-to-late 1990s and continued as an independent CSC responsible for its own affairs and leadership.

Celtic fans Madrid 1980

As The Vogue is located within short walking distance of Celtic Park, it never made economic or practical sense for the club to run a bus to home matches. The primary function has always been to facilitate travel to away matches.

The club attended its first away league game by bus in the 1968–69 season on September 21, 1968, when Celtic drew 1–1 at Dunfermline. Clyde was the first away fixture that season, though back then they were located at Shawfield, which is only a short walk from The Vogue.

One of the greatest footballers in Celtic’s illustrious history, Bobby Murdoch, came from Rutherglen and not from Bothwell, as many inaccurately claim. After his time at Celtic and Middlesbrough, he became a Vogue regular. The possibility of seeing a Lisbon Lion in the flesh made The Vogue a Mecca for Celtic supporters. Bobby was an avid supporter of the club and gave enormous support at functions over the years.

A true friend to many, he was the club’s very own Lisbon Lion. After Bobby’s sad passing in 2001, the club gained permission from his wife Kathleen to rename the CSC in Bobby’s memory. The Rutherglen Vogue CSC became the Bobby Murdoch Rutherglen Vogue CSC, and so a new chapter in the club’s history began. To this day, everyone at the club is extremely proud to carry on his name.

The club mostly attended domestic away matches in Scotland for the first several years after formation. The first away trip in Europe was against Dundalk on 7th November, 1979. This was followed by Real Madrid on 19 March, 1980. Obviously, in 1979 and 1980, air travel was a luxury and suffered in comparison to now, so the club bussed it there and back on both occasions, getting the ferry at Cairnryan and Dover, respectively.

Since the club’s inception, there has always been some form of representation at the majority of games. The most notable was in Seville. Naturally, when spending significant amounts of time travelling across Scotland and Europe, particularly on those long Sunday or midweek trips home from Aberdeen and Dingwall, it’s the craic amongst mates that passes the time.

The club has also upheld a longstanding tradition from the days of old, much to the offence of the modern-day ultra-cultured generation, the obligatory game of three-card brag. This was always a good way of bringing the different age groups together and getting new people involved, who otherwise would just keep to themselves. It has been said on many occasions by those who go week-in, week-out, that the match itself can often be the worst part of any trip.

Through the years, the club has made many connections and gained valued friends across the world, specifically Donegal, Dublin, Cork, Downpatrick, and Belfast, to the south in Luton and Welwyn Garden City. Looking further afield, the club also maintains connections across Europe and beyond, particularly in Paris, Munich, New York, and Phoenix.

Bobby Murdoch 

Through the highs and lows of the past 50 years, the support of Celtic from their club has not wavered. The future of the club is now in the hands of the current committee, and the Bobby Murdoch Rutherglen Vogue CSC will continue to thrive and endure. Everyone at the Bobby Murdoch Rutherglen Vogue CSC would like to extend their sincere thanks and appreciation to the custodians, the punters, the pub regulars and staff, the wider Rutherglen Celtic and Irish community, and all those who have supported their club in one way or another since 1968.

An extract from Football Without Fans – The History of Celtic Supporters Clubs by David McIntyre ( Celtic Bars). Football Without Fans – The History of Celtic Supporters Clubs is out now and available in print and kindle versions HERE. Watch the video in the Celtic World tweet below for some amazing facts on the Celtic support around the world.

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

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