The East is Green – January 1967 and the 1969 Scottish Cup Final

More from The East is Green…

January 1967 Self-Infliction

Forrest gets the blame for Rangers defeat at Berwick, so we’ll just go and whack ourselves in the balls once more by getting rid of a guy who had already scored 14 goals at that time and scored 145 goals in 163 games, he scored 57 goals in his first season. Watch what happened below…

I have a vague memory of coming back from Aberdeen on the Edinburgh & District bus and there was some sort of disturbance down the back. I seem to remember Archie Wright calling Paddy Miller a young rascal, well that was the start of the “Great Schism“. The young guys broke away and started their own bus, the St. Pats for the purpose of following Glasgow Celtic, social outings, reforming wayward youths and some damn good singers, Paddy Miller, Todd Sweeney, Frank Meechan, John ’Tosh’ Togher, John Slavin, Terry and Hammy Dailly, John Cummings, Alec Hardy, Mick Cullen, Mick Lawrie and Mick McTigue, God bless them all.

I stayed with the Edinburgh and District bus I was too feart to go with them, stay where you are son they’ll just get you into trouble you’ll end up in jail wi’ they Great Train Robbers so ye will.

They hoisted up a flag of green t’was a pleasure to the eyes
And when they had it finished sure they called it Paradise.
Andrew “Todd” Sweeney

1969 Scottish Cup Final 

This has got to be one of the happiest, most glorious and memorable games in our whole history, not just the result but the fact that there were 132,870 fans there an even 50/50 split so we’re talking 65,000 a side here, the bookies made Rangers favourites, probably because we were missing our wingers Johnstone and Hughes, two influential players and let’s not forget this was a very good Rangers side. Most of them went on to win the European Cup Winners Cup a few years later.

The tension is tangible because of an overwhelming desire to win and fear of defeat and all that goes with it, the disappointment, anger, hurt and the wait until the following season before you get the chance for revenge. Rangers fancied themselves as they had beaten Aberdeen 6-1 in the semi-final but Jock Stein was well aware of  their strengths and weaknesses, better than their manager Davie White.

Big Billy as he had done so often puts us 1-0 up in two minutes with a brilliant header.


Yet again more self testicle squashing from the blue side, twice slack play from their defence but great awareness from George Connolly and Bobby Lennox to capitalise on it. Euphoria around half of Hampden you just can’t describe it, you’ve lost your place, you’ve lost your mates, you’ve lost your scarf, where’s ma cairry oot, you’ve lost your heid, eventually when it calms down a little and look across the way you see the sixty-five thousand over on the other half as still as a photograph as if observing a minute’s silence while those daring to lift their heads can see us dancing like lunatics at “Happy Hour” this is a unique pain and anguish wrapped up with ecstasy all in a few moments.

I defy historians of  football to compare this to anywhere in the world, Arsenal- Spurs behave yourself, Everton-Liverpool  for passion yes, but numbers no, Manchester derby not on this scale Wembley is not big enough, Boca Juniors-River Plate, La Bombonera ground only holds 54,000, the support for both teams comes from Stornoway to Southampton we will never be the flavour of the month type clubs it comes from family heritage and moving away home for work and taking the love of the clubs with us.

By the time Stevie Chalmers put away number four it was time for more self-inflicting damage this time from their fans at the back of the terracing throwing bottles which were never going to reach the pitch but land on the heads of their fellow supporters at the front causing a mass exodus onto the track. Some want to escape to safety but many want escape the pain of the result, bleeding heads, ambulance men attending the wounded, fights, resisting arrests with the cops and sheer mayhem this is when I heard someone use that great Scottish under statement:

“Whit a bloody cairry oan”

The East is Green is a self published booklet written by life-long Celtic supporter Brian McAuley, who has also personally designed so many Celtic Supporters Club badges and many of them will be shown on The Celtic Star as we serialise this brilliant little book. Running to just over 100 pages it’s a great insight into supporting Celtic and attending games stretching as far back as the 1950s to the modern day.

As we have done previously with Jerry Woods’ brilliant To Lisbon and Back on a Fiver, we’re happy to put any reader in touch with Brian and he’s post and package you a copy of The East is Green for the very reasonable cost of £5 including postage. Just drop an email to and we’ll make the necessary introductions.

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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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