Joe Morton’s view on the Celtic ‘nine-in-a-row’ teams provoked a response from Rob Boag.
“Today’s Celtic team, with their multi-national line-up, is in stark cultural contrast to Joe Morton’s nine consecutive championship Celtic teams from 1965 through to 1974 when all Celtic players were west coast Scotsmen,” said regular contributor Rob.
“It should be noted that this was at a time when Jerry Kerr had four Scandinavians in Dundee United’s line-up — a line-up that beat Barcelona home and away in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1966.
“United also beat Celtic home and away in the Parkhead side’s 66-67 historical season.
“I’m surprised Jerry Kerr isn’t in Scotland’s Football Hall of Fame.”
Returning to the Celtic theme, Rob, from Canada, continued: “Only three of the Lisbon Lions played in the 1974 championship season — Bobby Lennox, Billy McNeill and Jimmy Johnstone.
“In 1975, Celtic signed goalkeeper Peter Latchford, an Englishman, and finished in third place, tied with Dundee United on points.
“I recently watched a clip from youtube, where actor Robert Duvall described Jimmy Johnstone as the greatest character he had ever met in his life.
“Jimmy and Robert spent a night at a hotel bar when Duvall was in Scotland making the movie ‘A Shot at Glory’.
“Praise, indeed, from an actor who has worked with megastars such as John Wayne,
Al Pacino, Marlon Brando, Robert Redford and many others.
“At his Hollywood home, Robert Duvall named his dog Jinky.”
The structure of Scottish football changed in 1975, and Rob went on: “The 1975-76 season saw a new Premier Division formed.
“It was the end of an era, not only in league structure but also the waning of an era in a two-decade Scottish achievement period where Scots reached beyond their grasp.
“They raised the bar and set new standards for British teams and fans to enter European football tournaments.
“It was in 1955 that Harry Swan, chairman of Hibs, and his manager Hugh Shaw entered the Edinburgh side into Europe.
“This was the Hibees outfit with the ‘Famous Five’ forward-line of Smith, Johnstone, Reilly, Turnbull and Ormond.
“They were the first British team to compete in European football competition.
“In 1956, Matt Busby and Scot Symon followed when they entered Manchester United and Glasgow Rangers into Europe.
“In the 1960s, it was Bill Shankly with Liverpool, Bob Shankly with Dundee FC, Jerry Kerr with Dundee United and Jock Stein with Dunfermline and Celtic.
“Then, in 1967, European Cup success came along for Celtic, the first British team to achieve this status.
“These Scots were football visionaries who saw expansion of the game outside of their country and paved the way for other forward-thinkers such as Jim McLean and Alex Ferguson.
“From Harry Swan to Sir Alex Ferguson — these Scottish football philosophers raised the game to an unprecedented level of competition, skill and excitement.
“English managers followed in their footprints.
“Was this era a football renaissance, or a golden age of glorious football?
“Will we ever see their likes again?”
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