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happy birthday dear celtic

Happy Birthday Dear Celtic - the Inside Story of the Centenary Season by Douglas Beattie

Vision sports Publishing; 245 pages hardback (8 pages of colour and b/w pics); £16.99


Another fix for nostalgia junkies, albeit from a more recent era. Douglas Beattie has assembled the reminiscences of most of the Celtic squad from that momentous season in the club’s history, along with contributions from Billy McNeill, and has put them together with his own brisk narrative style to produce a hugely enjoyable account of the league and cup double of 1988. (Altogether now, ‘was it really more than twenty years ago?’)

The quality of the writing in this one is first class. Beattie has brought the Centenary season to life again, and given that particular group of players their due place in the history of our great club. Some great stuff about McAvennie, Burns, McNeill, Andy Walker and the rest. Not just the stars of the team, either. Guys like Allen McKnight and Lex Baillie contribute as well.

We all have our own memories of that season and it wasn’t long before the players’ recollections brought them flooding back. If there’s one small criticism it would be that Jack McGinn and the rest of the old board get off a bit lightly, but I suppose any kind of vitriol would have spoiled the otherwise upbeat tone of the book.

Overall it brings back magic memories of a magic time to be a Celtic supporter.

Uncle Tim will be delighted if he finds this in his Christmas stocking. Make sure you read it yourself first.