Sign in or
1979-10-24: Celtic 3-2 Dundalk, European Cup
|Match Pictures | Matches 1979 1980 | 1979-80 Pictures|
- Rumours abound that Dundalk players were in town drinking before the night of the game. Manager Jimmy McLaughlin makes light of it all.
- Part time Dundalk's result is reckoned to be the best by any Irish side in European football.
- Celtic captain Danny McGrain was given an award by Rothmans before the match for his contribution to football in the 1978/79 season.
Review When Roddy MacDonald scored an early goal Celtc fans stood back and expected a goal barrage which didn't materialise.
In 31 minutes Tom McAdam sent a fine pass to McCluskey to leave him clear on goal and he finished well. However Dundalk struck back immediately when Dainty's fine cross was headed powerful in to the net by Muckian.
Danny McGrain then went on a powerful run and Tommy Burns struck an excellent low shot into the net for 3-1 from McGrain's pass.
In the second half Celtic were dreadfully out of touch. In 66 minutes Flanagan's fine pass split the Celtic defence who claimed in vain for offside. Substitute Lawlor was allowed time and room to beat Latchford and make it 3-2.
Celtic could not get going and at full time the fans were not slow to show their feelings as Dundalk's players celebrated their fine result on the pitch.
Latchford, McGrain, McAdam, MacDonald, Lynch, Aitken, MacLeod, Davidson (Lennox 61), Provan, McCluskey, Burns Subs: Bonner Sneddon Edvaldsson Conroy
Goals:- MacDonald (3), McCluskey (30), Burns (33)
Blackmore, McConville, Keely, Dunning, Martin Lawlor, Dainty, Byrne, Devine, Flanigan, Muckian, Daly (Mick Lawlor)
Goals:- Muckian (32), Mick Lawlor (66)
Ref:- Thorvardur (Iceland)
- Match Report (see below)
When the Dundalk team reached their hotel on the eve of the match a piper was playing a lament. This appeared to be an apt comment on Dundalk’s chances on avoiding a mauling. Although Celtic had just lost their unbeaten record in the Scottish league the previous Saturday against Morton, Jim McLaughlin was not seeing that as a good omen. “That was the worst thing that could have happened. They will be out to make us suffer. We have grown up in Europe. We made mistakes like in the away game in Eindhoven and we have paid heavily for them. But this is probably the best team that Dundalk has ever had. We are vastly experienced with players who will not freeze at the enormity of the task and I am reasonably confident that we can frustrate Celtic.” In the event, Dundalk’s team of near cripples played possibly the greatest game ever by an Irish team in Europe.
At the end of the match the entire Dundalk squad ran onto the middle of the pitch and received an ovation from the 33,000 attendance, including the 500 or so Dundalk fans who made the trip. Leo “Pop” Flanagan was acknowledged as being the man of the match but most of the credit was reserved for Jim McLaughlin for achieving such an incredible result with such a half fit team. After the game he admitted that he had almost quit the job only two weeks previously due to business commitments. Dundalk: Blackmore; McConville; Martin Lawlor; Keely; Dunning; Flanagan; Daly (Mick Lawlor); Devine; Muckian; Byrne;Dainty. Celtic: Latchford; McGrain;Lynch; Aitken; McDonald; McAdam; Proven; Davidson (Lennon); McCluskey; MacLeod; Burns
Glasgow Herald following 1st Leg“No one seemed to have told the collection of Irish bankers, butchers and company directors that they were not supposed to have a chance against the Scottish Champions: it was to be a picnic for Celtic and a goal feast for the fans. But Brave Dundalk, with several players less than 100% fit, defied all the odds to and came so close to nearly pulling off an even greater shock.”
Daily Record following 1st Leg
Another paper reported “Let me be blunt. This was not a case of the luck of the Irish. No Leprechauns guarded their goal. No blarney was used to con the Celts.The Parkhead crowd watched in eloquent silence as Dundalk celebrated a moral victory.”
Jim McLaughlin on Celtic (Speaking in 2010)
We were down and out after not qualifying in 1978. We sold the three lads to Liverpool which allowed us to sign elderly statesmen like Dermot Keely! So by 1979 we had one of the best teams the League of Ireland has ever seen. I never seen a back five who were played as well together. The double followed and we went on a great European run.
The height of any footballers life is to play against teams that you have supported as a child. Many of us and the fans would have supported Celtic. We already had a good relationship with Celtic. It was one of the greatest times of our lives. If only Tommy had put the ball in the bloody net instead of farting about!!!
Mickey Duffy (Dundalk Fan) on 79 team
That defence was incredible. I remember around that time we played Birmingham and their manager, Jim Smith, wanted to buy that back five en masse”.
Tommy McConville on that miss v Celtic
(Joking – I assure you) I missed it because I backed Celtic! I got a nice house in Farndreg out of it!! Seriously, Tony Cavanagh crossed the ball into the box. Cathal Muckian got a wee knick on the ball which took the ball away from me. The ball ended up jumping over my foot. That was it. I was thinking that if I scored they would take down the Maid of Erin and stick me up there!
All of these European games were fantastic. They were great occasions. There was a great buzz around town in the lead up to the games. People would come up to watch the opposition team train. It’s great to be back in Europe this season.
I was never afraid of anybody when playing in Europe for Dundalk. Apart from Keely!
Keely on Celtic
It’s match I remember well. We were getting pounded over there. I remember asking Paddy Dunning how could we survive this and he told me to “stand on the edge of the box and pray!” Dundalk were one of the first sides ever to play square at the back. Yet I stepped up twice and Celtic got in twice to score. I remember somebody going down injured and Jim McLaughlin himself ran on the pitch with a water bottle. He looked at me with venom in his eyes and shouted at me – “See if you step up again? I will f***ing strangle you!!” It was a great night. We of course nearly went through in the second leg. Tommy Mc nearly scored at the end. It was a night Danny McGrain’s beard turned grey!
Celtic was the outstanding memory of my European experience. I couldn’t believe that they could get that many people into Oriel Park and then the directors saying afterwards that they didn’t have any money to pay a bonus!
Martin Lawlor on Celtic
The Celtic game was phenomenal. We could have beaten them in Parkhead because we created a lot of our chances. We gave them a huge fright. We were a little bit naïve in the first fifteen minutes and maybe had a lack of belief. But we came into it and got a great result. We had a totally different attitude in the 2nd Leg. Our frame of mind changed completely. We went into it in a very attacking manner and we nearly got our rewards. Such a pity as we would have got Real Madrid in the next round!
Richie Blackmore on Celtic
The Celtic game was a surreal atmosphere. There was a high pitched scream the entire match. It was very different from anything else I experienced. It was the pinnacle of our time with the club. I played with the League of Ireland over in Brazil and even that didn’t match the atmosphere of Parkhead. It was really special.
Latest page update: made by joebloggscity
, Jun 10 2013, 8:06 AM EDT
(about this update
About This Update
Edited by joebloggscity
- complete history)
Keyword tags: None
More Info: links to this page