If You Know The History – 20th March 1974 Celtic 4 Basle 2 European Cup Quarter-final 2nd Leg

In season 1973-74, Celtic were still in Europe by this stage of the campaign, having knocked out Turku of Finland (9-1 on aggregate) in round one and Vejle of Denmark (1-0 on aggregate) in round two.

On 29th February 1973, Celtic travelled to Switzerland to meet FC Basle in the first leg of a quarter-final tie in the European Cup. A serious defensive error gave Basle the chance to take the lead in three minutes; Paul Wilson equalised in 20 minutes; Celtic conceded a penalty which the Swiss side converted for a 2-1 lead and Basle made it 3-1 two minutes later; Kenny Dalglish pulled one back nine minutes after half-time but Basle held out for a fine 3-2 victory.

On this day in 1974, an excellent crowd of 71,000 was at Celtic Park for the return leg. Celtic were a much-changed side from the team of the late 1960s, Jock Stein putting out an eleven of Dennis Connaghan, Davie Hay, Jim Brogan, Stevie Murray, Billy McNeill, George Connelly, Jimmy Johnstone, Harry Hood, Kenny Dalglish, Dixie Deans and Tommy Callaghan.

Celtic got off to a dreadful start when George Connelly was taken off within the first five minutes with a broken ankle, Pat McCluskey coming on as replacement. In 12 minutes, though, Kenny Dalglish opened the scoring with a header from a Tommy Callaghan free-kick; three minutes later, Stevie Murray’s fine pass allowed Dixie Deans the chance for a clear run on goal and he made no mistake. 2-0 Celtic. In 33 minutes, though, left-back Mundschin made it 2-1 and right on the half-time whistle, centre-forward Balmer got the equaliser.

Celtic regained the lead in 57 minutes when Callaghan volleyed home  a Deans flick from a Jimmy Johnstone corner and in spite of repeated attempts by both sides, the match finished 3-2 to Celtic, 5-5 on aggregate, so the match went into extra-time. Much to the delight of the Celtic faithful, in only the 4th minute of the extra period, the winner arrived for the Hoops. Jim Brogan pushed the ball down the wing to Harry Hood, who crossed to the far post where Stevie Murray was waiting to nod it into the net.



The 6-5 result on aggregate put Celtic into a European Cup semi-final for the 4th time.


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