If You Know The History: 7th January: Empire Exhibition Trophy

7th January 1939 Raith Rovers 4 Celtic 0

The Celtic team of the late 1930s had some great moments to savour. In 1937, they collected the Scottish Cup by beating Aberdeen 2-1 in the final at Hampden before 147,365 spectators and in the following season of 1937/1938, they not only won the league title for the 19th time in the club’s history but in June 1938, that same squad of players picked up the Empire Exhibition Trophy, a single goal by Johnny Crum in the final against Everton enough to secure victory.

The Empire Exhibition Trophy

All good things come to an end, though, and in the last full season before World War 2, Celtic hit some rocky moments.

On this day in 1939, for instance, they travelled up to Kirkcaldy to face Raith Rovers at Starks Park, with some new faces in the side, like Bertie Duffy at left half, making the last of his 4 club appearances, John Watters at centre-forward, in his 5th outing and Jimmy Birrell at outside-left, running out for his second – and final – game for the Hoops.

Unfortunately for these guys, the whole team had a shocker, much to the manager’s disgust, and Raith Rovers won 4-0, Celtic’s third consecutive defeat since the turn of the year.

Jim Craig


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