Jim Craig’s 7am start: Britain’s Manager of the Year, 1966

After a few years in charge of the reserve team at Celtic Park, Jock Stein moved across the country to become manager of Dunfermline, where he firstly guided the players away from the relegation zone and then coached them to a Scottish Cup win in 1961.

During the following three years, the Pars were a force to be reckoned with, finishing three consecutive league seasons in the top half of the table and having good runs in the Cup-Winners’ Cup of 1961-62, where they reached the quarter-finals, plus the Fairs Cup for the next two seasons.

In April 1964, Jock Stein moved to Hibs and found immediate success, exerting enough influence over the playing staff to pick up the Summer Cup, the first silverware to come into Easter Road since the League Championship wins of 1950-51 and 1951-52.

But when Celtic came calling in the early months of 1965, he could not resist the challenge and took over from Jimmy McGrory as manager in March of that year.

Success was immediate.

A Scottish Cup win in the spring of 1965 was followed by a League Cup success in the autumn of that year and a League Championship at the end of the 1965-66 season, during which Celtic had also reached final of the Scottish Cup and the semi-final of the Cup-Winners’ Cup.

For these achievements, Jock Stein received the accolade of Britain’s Manager of the Year on this day in 1966.

But the best was yet to come!

Jim Craig

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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 editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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