21st January 1967: Celtic v Hibs League – Part

16th January

First outing for Lions

The performance by the team in the 4-0 win at Muirton Park was much lauded in the press on that Monday morning and again in the evening papers.
The players and management were also very pleased. Muirton Park was never an easy ground to come away from with two points and the fact that we had scored four goals in doing so only made matters even more enjoyable.

It had been a memorable match in Celtic’s history too – but only in retrospect. Yes, it had been the first time that the eleven players who would win the European Cup in Lisbon had run on to the field for any match but no one at that time had any inkling of what lay ahead for Celtic Football Club and the match was regarded merely as another league game in the quest for the league title. However, when we all look back at that occasion now, you must say that it was not a bad start!

The main news in the papers was that Joe McBride would definitely make his comeback in a Celtic jersey on the following Wednesday in the replay of a Second Eleven cup-tie against Hearts. Jock Stein must have been very exasperated by that time being questioned about Joe’s state of fitness as he was very blunt in his comments to the reporters ;
“This should kill for good and all the stupid rumours that Joe is finished as a player”.

Rumours were going about at that time that Joe had serious problems with his knee. It was even being suggested that he was finished as a player. “These rumours are completely untrue” went on the Boss, “we are going to prove that when we replay our 2nd Eleven cup tie against Hearts”.

Celtic had other injury concerns at that time. John Cushley had been out for some weeks and Ian Young, who had been crocked in the reserve cup tie against Hearts, now had a leg in plaster.

17th January
The state of the business dealings of Third Lanark Football Club continued to frustrate their supporters and fascinate the general public. The report of the joint SFA and Scottish Football League inquiry came out that day and their findings stated that ‘…..any future failure in responsibility by the club would be met with serious consequences for the future of the club’.

This comment is from one of the evening papers – ‘There will be a first-team look about the Celtic – Hearts 3rd round 2nd eleven cup replay at Celtic Park tomorrow. The Celtic side will be chosen from a squad of 13 – Fallon, Halpin, Brogan, O’Neill, Henderson, McCarron, Cattenach, Macari, McBride, Quinn, Taylor, Gallagher and Hughes.
Hearts are also determined to put out a top side’.

18th January
Manager Jock Stein phoned his counterpart at Tynecastle – John Harvey – and told him “play any man you like…we will have no objection”.
That was quite a bold move on the Boss’s part, as the rules of the competition stated that first-team players are banned from playing

19th January
The cup tie was won 3-2 by Celtic and on the following morning, according to the papers – ‘Joe McBride walked into Celtic Park and told manager Jock Stein “no reaction of any kind from the knee. I feel fine and ready to play anywhere, any time”.
The Celtic manager commented –“This should end the rumours for once and for all. McBride is fit …and he will definitely be considered for a place on Saturday’s line-up”.

20th January
Unfortunately, on the eve of the match, the comments coming out of Celtic Park had changed somewhat –
‘There will be no return for Joe McBride to the Celtic team against Hibs at Celtic Park tomorrow. The pitch is too heavy.
Jock Stein said “Joe McBride will not be playing tomorrow. He came through the reserve game against Hearts without any trouble from his knee but I have decided not to risk him tomorrow. When Joe learned that he was not in the first team he asked to be fielded at Easter Road in the reserve game. I told him to forget that idea. A rest tomorrow will do him no harm”.

One guy who had been out for some time – John Hughes – was included in a list of seven forwards put out ; Johnstone, Wallace, Chalmers, Gallagher, Auld, Lennox and Hughes. Hibs listed 12 names, the eleven which beat Motherwell 2-1 the previous week plus Jim O’Rourke, who has been starring with the reserve side.

Fine Fare
B.U.A. are to provide a Burns supper on their evening inter-jet service linking Glasgow and Edinburgh with London next week.
The traditional haggis, potatoes and mashed turnips will be served for the main course. Hostesses will carry the haggis on board, led by a piper.

Loos Available
Glasgow shopkeepers are incensed by a Corporation decision that they must provide lavatories for the general public – whether or not they are customers.

Tragedy in Italy
Two car drivers plunged 200 feet to their deaths when a section of bridge collapsed on the Appian Way, south of Rome.
A third car screeched to a halt within feet of the yawning chasm, midway across the century-old Ponte Dell Ariccia Bridge.
Firemen and rescue workers worked for hours in the tangled mass of steel and masonry in the ravine below.