‘The day Jimmy Johnstone signed for Celtic,’ Jim Craig

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Born on 30 September 1944, Jimmy Johnstone grew up in Viewpark, Lanarkshire, where a close-knit family unit made his early life a very happy one.

Jimmy was forever out in the fields and woods round his house, getting up to all the usual things wee boys did at that time, his many friends always in and out of his Mum and Dad’s home.

As he reached his middle teens, his precocious skills attracted the attention of more than one club but Jimmy had always been a Celtic fan and once he became a ball-boy at Celtic Park in 1958, he was even more determined to sign for the club and he did so on this day in 1961, Frank Haffey being one of the first to congratulate the new Celt.

Jimmy’s life now changed and he had to cope with new situations all the time, like travelling or playing in the reserves, not forgetting the constant practice that made him such a fine player. Some stability was also required and that came when he married his lovely Agnes. Now, the Wee Man was ready to take on Europe and the World.

The career of Tom Maley – born on this day in 1864 – is always slightly over-shadowed by the successes of his younger brother Willie at Celtic Park but Tom had an excellent career in his own right.

His 9 appearances for Celtic came just after a successful period with Third Lanark and Hibs; and he also managed to fit in the post of Headmaster of Slateford Industrial School in Glasgow.

Tom became a director of Celtic for five years and then moved south, firstly to take the post of Manchester City manager – where he led the club to an FA Cup win in 1904 – and then Bradford Park Avenue, before retiring in 1928.

Tom Maley died on 24 August 1935.

Jim Craig


LISBON LION Jim Craig writes his wonderful Celtic Diary every morning on The Celtic Star. There may be other attributes that sets this Celtic site apart from others but it is unarguable that having a Lisbon Lion writing for us is pretty unique and we think is rather special.

We are now looking to have Jim’s diary sponsored – with ALL the money going to Jim. If you run your own business or are have a marketing role in your company and would like to discuss this further please email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk and we’ll get back to you. We have some great ideas on how this low cost opportunity would give your business some amazing exposure – since launching in February this year The Celtic Star achieved by 17 October an incredible 789,744 users according to Google Analytics. And Jim will also be able to assist at one or two events for you – maybe a few lunch dates with key clients etc? Interested? We’d love to hear from you…

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David Potter’s new book – Celtic – How the League was Won 49 Times is out now. Click on the cover image below to order an advance copy together with a FREE copy of That Season in Paradise – Ten Months of Celtic Heaven which is signed by none other that Lisbon Lion, Bertie Auld.


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  1. Was at Tannadice that day. I for the life of me believed that Harald had scored the winning goal. The visibility lines from the back of the shed and also alcohol impairment ensured that I didn’t discover that it was an OG until the following morning.

    Our car took the wrong turning on the way home. We ended up heading for Fife instead of Perth then doon to Stirling.

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