15th January 1966 : Aberdeen v Celtic – Part One

What the Papers were Saying

Immediately after the home leg against Dynamo Kiev, all the attention in the press switched to the away leg of the tie, with the Aberdeen league fixture coming up on the Saturday almost being overlooked.

For instance, on Friday 14th January, in one of our major dailies, there was further news of this away clash which was proving so difficult to organise ;-

‘The Celtic – Kiev Dynamo Cup Winners’ Cup 2nd leg tie due to be played in Tbilisi is definitely OFF.

The clubs now have till the 25th January 1966 to arrange another date, otherwise UEFA will step in and fix up one for them’

In another paper, there was an indication that Celtic’s officials were becoming a little miffed about the whole proceedings ;-


‘Celtic’s main ambition this season is to win the Scottish League Championship.

If the Cup Winners’ Cup infringes on Celtic’s chances of achieving this, then they might be prepared to get out of the Russian business and the Cup Winners’ Cup’.


And on the morning of the Aberdeen match, there was further news ;-


Now that the Russians have agreed that Celtic can fly to Tbilisi by their own aircraft, the Parkhead club want to get the tie with Dynamo Kiev out the way as quickly as possible.

Wednesday 19th January was ruled out. Now, Celtic has sent a cable suggesting Wednesday 26th January is entirely suitable to them instead’.


commentButton2Getting Recognised

It is amazing the effect that a bit of exposure in the media can have on someone’s life. After the publicity given to the home leg against Dynamo Kiev – and all the talk about the problems of organizing the away leg – I could not walk along a single corridor in the Dental Hospital without someone stopping me and asking about the matches. It was good to be so well-treated but it was taking me much longer to do things than it did before and I was beginning to feel the pressure.

I also had another problem to deal with. The date for the return leg against Kiev was still not put in stone and although I had arranged time off to travel, the constant changing of the date was making it difficult to plan ahead, as regards patients’ appointments and so on.



With matches for both the first-team and the reserves on the Saturday, the Thursday night training was quite relaxed, with the concentration on the short, sharp stuff rather than the long runs.

Celtic might have won the match against Kiev 3-0 but as we chatted between the various splints, it was George Connelly who was the ‘talk of the steamie’ for his ‘keepy uppy’ routine at half-time on the night of the match.

Unfortunately, as I was in the dressing-room at that point, I did not see the laddie frae High Valleyfield’s performance but from what everyone was saying, it must have been exceptional.

Still, as we used to say in those far-off days, when respect for somebody’s juggling talent was tempered with realism, would he have got away with it on a wet night in Kirkcaldy?


Aberdeen’s Position


Pitoddrie in the 60s!
© Daily Record

In season 1964-65, Aberdeen had finished 12th in the league. In this campaign, they were lying 7th, which was putting manager Eddie Turnbull under a bit of pressure, as both the fans and the Board of Directors were expecting more of their club.


However, on their own patch of Pittodrie, with the crowd situated very close to the pitch, they would be a tough nut for Celtic to crack and none of us were in any doubt that a stern test lay ahead.

Aberdeen Football Club had also joined with the then current trend of bringing in players from the Continent, in this case from Denmark, midfielder Pederson and striker Ravn.



Manager’s Thoughts

As expected, most of the questions at Jock Stein’s pre-match press conference were about the first leg game against Kiev and the uncertain timing of the away fixture. However, when eventually pinned down about the Aberdeen match, Stein admitted that both Tam Gemmell and Charlie Gallagher had picked up what he described as minor injuries in the Cup Winners’ tie but he expected both would be fit. However, the eleven who played against Kiev would be joined by a few others – un-named – in the travelling party.




Last time round, I asked who the manager of Coleraine was in January 1966 and the answer was Bertie Peacock, whose side had met Dynamo Kiev in the first round of that season’s Cup Winners’ Cup. So I would imagine that Jock Stein would have been on the phone to his old team-mate to see if he could pick up any tips on the Ukrainian team.

The question this time concerns Aberdeen Football Club. The Dons adopted the red strip that is so familiar to Scottish football fans in 1939. Which colour of strip had they played in before that date?


Pop Idols Injured

Pop group leader Manfred Mann and lead singer Paul Jones were in hospital last night after being injured in a car crash yesterday near Grantham.

Mann, whose real name in Lubowitz, and Jones were not seriously injured.


All Over Europe

Cars set out from 9 points in Europe yesterday for what seemed certain to be a slip-and-slide drive to the Mediterranean in the Monte Carlo Rally.

The starting places of more than 200 cars were London, Lisbon, Oslo, Warsaw, Athens, Minsk, Bad Homburg, Rheims and Monte Carlo.


No Peace on the Slopes

Mrs Jacqueline Kennedy went out skiing yesterday near Gstaad, Switzerland, as crowds of tourists milled round the town trying to get a glimpse of her. She is on holiday with her children Caroline (8) and John (5).