Former President of Albania’s ‘Football, Freedom and Paradise’ message

Ilir Meta, the former President of Albania, has today posted his latest message to Celtic support as he looks forward to Rudi Vata’s book coming out and also visiting Celtic Parka again soon to watch the Bhoys play.

Celtic supporters were in Sarajevo five years ago for a European qualifier and Meta was there too for a meeting of regional leaders. He heard the Celtic supporters singing nearby and went over to join them in a Celtic song. His interest in Celtic comes from former Albanian international Rudi Vata, father of current Celt Rocco Vata, and since then his passion for everything Celtic has been apparent.

He even opened a Celtic supporters club in Tirana and based it in the bar nearest the Parliament which is usually used by politicians and civil servants. The choice of music played at the opening was rebellious to say the least!

“Dear Celtic, I’m eager to read the new book that its coming from my brother and Celtic Legend, Rudi Vata: “Football, Freedom and Paradise!”. I’m looking forward to celebrate with you at Paradise, Celtic Park, as soon as possible! Hail Hail!” the former President of Albania said.

Rudi Vata’s book will be an interesting read, given his ‘escape’ from the Albanian Iron curtain that led him to Paradise and it will also be interesting to read about his views on Rocco’s career. There’s still no movement from Celtic regarding getting a deal signed and there’s plenty of interest in the Celtic Academy star from various leading Italian clubs.

Celtic v Motherwell –  Rocco Vata during the Premiership match at Celtic Park,  April 22, 2023. Photo Steve Welsh

Here’s the promotional text from Rudi Vata’s new book ‘Football, Freedom and Paradise!’…the book will be released on released on 29 July 2024 and you can pre-order now via WH Smith’s website.

16.11.1994. Photo  imago/Sven Simon
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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds 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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