Celtic ... the most memorable matches (30-26)

30.

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Johnny Doyle challenges Real Madrid keeper Ramon as George McCluskey and Roy Aitken look on during Celtic's 2-0 win in 1980. #SportTimestop50
Johnny Doyle challenges Real Madrid keeper Ramon as George McCluskey and Roy Aitken look on during Celtic's 2-0 win in 1980. #SportTimestop50

Game: Airdrieonians v Celtic.

Date: Wednesday, March 10, 1965.

Competition: First Division.

Venue: Broomfield.

Attendance: Not given.

Result: Airdrieonians 0 Celtic 6.

IT was Jock Stein's first game in charge, having moved from Hibs to replace Jimmy McGrory - and it proved a portent of things to come.

The goals rained in at Broomfield, with Bertie Auld - brought back to the Hoops from Birmigham just before Stein himself returned to Parkhead - grabbing five of them, including two penalties.

John Hughes scored the other goal on a day when Hoops fans got a glimpse of the silver-lined future.

Tommy Gemmell, John Clark, Billy McNeill, Stevie Chalmers and Bobby Lennox also started against the Diamonds, who had only 10 men for almost all the second half.

Just over two years later, these Bhoys would become Lions as they played their part in helping Celtic lift the European Cup.

29.

Game: Spartak Moscow v Celtic.

Date: Tuesday, October 2, 2012.

Competition: Champions League.

Venue: Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow.

Attendance: 31,000.

Result: Spartak 2 Celtic 3.

FINALLY, the hex which followed Celtic on their Champions League travels was lifted. At the 21st time of asking, the Hoops won on the road in the competition proper.

Gary Hooper opened the scoring before a double from Emmanuel Emenike put the home side ahead. But Juan Insaurralde's red card 27 minutes from time opened the door for the Hoops.

James Forrest came off the bench to hit a shot which was saved, but the rebound struck Dmitri Kombarov and went over the line.

Then Georgios Samaras stepped up to become the last-gasp hero, climbing above his marker to head home the winner.

28.

Game: Ajax v Celtic.

Date: Wednesday, September 29, 1982.

Competition: European Cup.

Venue: Olympic Stadium.

Attendance: 52,326.

Result: Ajax 1 Celtic 2.

HAVING been held to a 2-2 draw by Johan Cruyff and his Dutch masters - who had already lifted the European Cup three times - in the first leg at Parkhead, Celtic were given very little hope of progressing from this first-round tie.

However, the first indications something special might be about to happen came when Charlie Nicholas worked a 1-2 with Frank McGarvey to chip home the opening goal after 33 minutes.

Despite Pat Bonner performing heroics, Gerald Vanenburg equalised 20 minutes into the second half to put Ajax ahead on away goals.

But, the Hoops refused to give up, and got their reward when George McCluskey - who had replaced Davie Provan - cut in from the left wing to blast a low shot past Piet Schrijvers and send the Hoops fans into ecstasy.

27.

Game: Celtic v Real Madrid.

Date: Wednesday, March 5, 1980.

Competition: European Cup.

Venue: Celtic Park.

Attendance: 67,000.

Result: Celtic 2 Real Madrid 0.

THIS quarter-final tie was a real test for Billy McNeill's side as their previous two rounds had been against Partizan Tirana and Dundalk.

Now they were up against European royalty - a side which included the likes of Vicente del Bosque, Uli Stielike, Carlos Santillana, Jose Camacho and Laurie Cunningham.

But, they rose to the occasion and won this first-leg tie with second-half goals from George McCluskey and Johnny Doyle - both goals coming from thundering runs by Celtic full-back Alan Sneddon.

Unfortunately, the Madrid side who could not find a way past Peter Latchford in Glasgow scored three times at the Bernabeu to go through to the semi-finals.

26.

Game: Celtic v Hibs.

Date: Wednesday, May 20, 1953.

Competition: Coronation Cup final.

Venue: Hampden.

Attendance: 117,060.

Result: Celtic 2 Hibs 0.

CELTIC - having finished eighth in the league - stunned not just their own supporters to lift the trophy but shocked fans south of the border by beating Arsenal and Manchester United to reach the final.

The Gunners were English champions, and the 1-0 first-round victory appeared to galvanise the Hoops. United were defeated 2-1 to set up the shoot-out with Hibs.

New signing Neilly Mochan opened the scoring. But Hibs - champions in the previous two seasons and pipped only on goal average this year - came storming back and laid siege to Johnny Bonnar's goal.

Jock Stein and his fellow-defenders were rock solid and the cup was Celtic's when Jimmy Walsh scored their second three minutes from time.

YOUR SHOUT...

Now it's your turn to let us know what you think about Celtic's 50 most memorable matches. Get in touch with us via email at sport@eveningtimes.co.uk and have your say on the Hoops' biggest games.

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