10th April 1974 Celtic 0 Atletico Madrid 0
With eight consecutive league titles already wrapped up, Celtic were in very good position for a ninth at the beginning of April in 1974.
The club’s record in the league at that point was P26, W19, D3, L4, F69, A24, a series of figures which put them at the top of the table, four points clear of Hibs, with Rangers one point further back. In the League Cup, Celtic had beaten Rangers 3-1 in the semi-final but surprisingly lost 0-1 to Dundee in the final, the Blues on the day captained by Tommy Gemmell. In the Scottish Cup they had reached the semi-final, having disposed of Clydebank, Stirling and Motherwell on route; while in a high scoring journey through the early rounds of the European Cup, they had beaten Turku of Finland 9-0, Vejle of Denmark by a single goal then Basle from Switzerland 6-5,all on aggregate.
In the semi-finals, Celtic had been paired with Atletico Madrid and on this day in 1974, a crowd of 70,000 were packed into Parkhead for the first leg. The Celtic side was Denis Connaghan, Davie Hay, Jim Brogan, Steve Murray, Billy McNeill, Pat McCluskey, Jimmy Johnstone, Harry Hood, Dixie Deans, Tom Callaghan, Kenny Dalglish.
The Spaniards were managed by Juan Carlos Lorenzo, whose teams were always known for their ruthless play and the Atletico of that evening were no exception. Right from the start, they set out in competitive mode, determined to stop Celtic playing by any means, legal or illegal, mainly the latter. Three of their players were ordered off and seven booked. Disgraceful it might have been but they got the 0-0 draw they had come for and at the final whistle, the Atletico players jumped for joy.