If You Know The History: 30th May 1942 Celtic 2 Partick Thistle 1 Summer Cup

The Summer Cup was inaugurated in 1941 at the suggestion of Hibs Chairman Harry Swan with a view to giving a boost to the finances of clubs experiencing difficulties due to the war years. The competition was completed within a six-week period beginning in June and it ran for the rest of the war years.

In the first season, Celtic did not last long in the competition, losing 2-5 to Hibs on 6th June 1941 at Celtic Park and then only managing a 1-0 win at Easter Road a week later to go out 3-5 on aggregate.

A year later – on this day in 1942 – a crowd of 9,000 was at Celtic Park for the visit of Partick Thistle in the first leg of a first-round tie. They saw Celtic win 2-1, thanks to goals by Robert Fisher and John Rilay. A week later, 10,000 were at Firhill for the second leg, when goals by Johnny Crum and Jimmy Delaney gave Celtic a 2-0 win, the 4-1 aggregate score putting them into round two.

Jimmy Delaney

Jimmy Delaney

Jim Craig

If You Know The History: 26th May 1938 Celtic 3 Sunderland 1 1st Round Replay Empire Exhibition Trophy

In 1938, the Empire Exhibition was held in Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park. It was a most impressive, well-laid out display which covered many countries and aspects of the British Empire.

As part of the Exhibition, a football tournament was organised  – 4 teams from both Scotland and England, all matches to be played at Ibrox Stadium – with the winners to receive a special trophy. Celtic was one of the four Scottish clubs – Rangers, Aberdeen and Hearts the others; the English representatives were Sunderland, Everton, Brentford and Chelsea. When the draw for the first round was made, Celtic were paired with Sunderland and this match, played on 25th May 1938, opened the tournament and attracted a crowd of 50,000.

It turned out to be a very competitive encounter but all through the game defences proved too strong for forwards, with the result that, even after extra-time, no goals had been scored. By the rules of the competition, the replay was held 24 hours later – on this day in 1938 – when heavy rain kept the crowd down to around the 20,000 mark.

This time Celtic rose to the challenge and dominated the play, although Sunderland opened the scoring halfway through the first half. Before the interval, though, centre forward Johnny Crum equalised;

Johnny Crum

Johnny Crum


Three minutes into the second half, inside-left John Divers made it 2-1 to Celtic; and ten minutes after that, Divers got another to make the final score 3-1 for Celtic.

Jim Craig

If You Know The History: 22nd May 1943 Celtic 3 Third Lanark 0 Charity Cup Final

In season 1942-43, Celtic had finished 10th in the war-time Southern League and had failed to qualify from their section in the embryonic League Cup. They had also lost to Rangers twice in cup competitions, firstly by 2-1 in the first round of the Glasgow Cup, then more embarrassingly by 8 goals to one in a two-legged tie in the second round of the Summer Cup.

There was, though, better news in the Charity Cup, where Celtic had fine wins against Queens Park – 3-0 in round one – and Clyde – 3-1 in round two – to put them into the final, where Third Lanark would be the opponents.

The match was played on this day in 1945, in front of 25,000 spectators at Hampden. In terms of team balance and forward superiority, Celtic soon proved streets ahead. Third Lanark defended courageously but never threatened in attack and Celtic went in at the interval one-up, thanks to a well-placed strike by inside-left Charlie McGinlay.

By this time, Thirds were down to 10-men, having lost their captain Blair through injury and although they started the second half brightly, Celtic soon took control once more and scored two further goals, the first again from McGinlay and the second a spectacular effort by outside-left Hugh Long, after a run in which he beat four opponents. At 0-3 down, there was no way back for the Hi Hi and Celtic picked up the Charity Cup for the 24th time in the club’s history

Team; Miller, Hogg, Dornan, Lynch, McLaughlin, Corbett, Delaney, McPhail, Rae, McGinlay, Long.

Jim Craig

If You Know The History: 18th May 1946 Celtic 2 Raith Rovers 0 Victory Cup

The Victory Cup was put up to celebrate the end of the 2nd World War after the surrender of Japan and was played over a three-month period at the end of season 1945-46.

The first round matches were all two-legged affairs and Celtic started well, crushing St Johnstone 8-2 at Perth, Jackie Gallagher scoring four and Tommy Kiernan notching a hat-trick. In the second leg, back at Parkhead, another procession of goals went on display, Celtic eventually winning 5-0, making the aggregate score 13-2.

From that point on, the tournament was a straight knock-out affair and Celtic, by then with Jimmy McGrory as manager,  dealt with the following round comfortably, beating Queen of the South 3-0at Celtic Park on 4th May 1946 the goals again coming from  Gallagher (2) and Kiernan.

jimmy mcgrory bowler hat


On this day in 1946, a crowd of around 18,000 was crammed into Starks Park in Kirkcaldy to see Raith Rovers take on Celtic in round three and they witnessed a very competitive match in which the Bhoys were always the more positive side. And they turned this control into goals, Joe Rae and Jimmy Sirrell scoring the two which put Celtic into the semi-final.

Jim Craig

If You Know The History – 14th May 1983 Celtic 4 Rangers 2 League

On this day in 1983, Celtic met Rangers at Ibrox in the final league match of the 1982/83 season.

It had been a most unusual campaign. Celtic had won the first two championships of the decade, pushed all the way not by Rangers their usual rivals, but by Aberdeen, under Alex Ferguson. So, it came as no surprise when the Dons again put in a strong performance in 82/83, level on points with Celtic just before the final match. But, to the amazement of many, Dundee United, under Jim Mclean, had also put in a remarkable effort and  led the table by one point, with one game left.

The fans were well aware that there might be many twists and turns on the final day but the Celtic players, knew that they had to put all the other matches out of their minds and concentrate on taking full points from the clash with Rangers.


CELTIC  1982-83

The side on the day was Bonner, McGrain, Sinclair, Aitken, McAdam, McLeod, Provan, McStay, Nicholas, Burns and McGarvey. Unfortunately, the players seemed to freeze a little in the first-half  and as the half-time whistle blew, they were 0-2 down. However, no doubt having received some harsh words from Billy McNeill at half-time, the players started the second period with a much more positive attitude and the goals came. Charlie Nicholas scored two penalties – in 48 and 86 minutes – and there were two brilliantly headed goals by Tom McAdam and Frank McGarvey, giving the Hoops a 4-2 win.

That left them on 55 points, the same total as Aberdeen, but in the Tayside derby, Dundee United had overcome Dundee and that victory left them on 56 points, giving the Terrors their first Premier Division title.