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Books - Century Bhoys: A History of Celtic's Greatest Goalscorers (2010)
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DetailsTitle: Century Bhoys: A History of Celtic's Greatest Goalscorers
Author: Paul Cuddihy & David Friel
Player Homepage: various
SynopsisSince Celtic's formation in 1888, a total of seven hundred and seventy seven players have represented the club at first-team level and by the end of season 2007/08, Celtic had scored 10,883 competitive goals. However, just twenty-eight players have managed to score more than 100 competitive goals for Celtic throughout those 120 years. Century Bhoys celebrates each of these twenty-eight players, from the first player to hit 100 goals, Sandy McMahon (1890-1903), to the greatest goalscorer of all time, Jimmy McGrory with an incredible 468 goals in 445 appearances. It's an incredible list featuring famous Lisbon Lions such as Stevie Chalmers and Bobby Lennox and modern greats such as Brian McClair, Charlie Nicholas, John Hartson and, of course, the legendary Henrik Larsson, who scored 242 goals in 315 games during a seven-year period with the club. Each chapter focuses on an individual player, looking at their playing career with Celtic, with particular focus on their first goal, their 100th goal, the final goal as well as the highs and lows of their time at the club and one or two quirky and not widely known facts. Entertaining and informative, Century Bhoys is full of facts and anecdotes about the greatest goalscorers in the history of Celtic FC.
ReviewFor a club with a proud history of attacking football it's somewhat surprising that Century Bhoys is the first collective celebration of Celtic's greatest goalscorers to hit the bookstores.
A collaboration between Celtic View editor Paul Cuddihy and former View journalist David Friel, Century Bhoys takes a closer look at the 28 men who have netted more than a 100 competitive goals for Celtic.
From Johnny Campbell , Jimmy Quinn and James McGrory to Henrik Larsson and John Hartson, Celtic Park has long been home to players with an extraordinary talent for scoring goals. A tribute in print to these Parkhead heroes is long overdue - but has Century Bhoys been worth the wait?
For the most part the answer is 'Yes'. Century Bhoys is certainly an enjoyable read and provides an enticing introduction to some of the greatest names to have ever worn the green and white.
With many of the players featured already the subject of exhaustive individual biographies it was always going to be a challenge for the authors to throw fresh light on such extensively celebrated careers. They meet this challenge by ditching the straightforward biographical approach and instead tell the tale of the each player's Parkhead career via a series of significant scoring landmarks - First Goal, 100th Goal and Last Goal. Given the topic of the book - goalscorers! - it's a natural way to follow the progress of these prolific goal getters and one that works well in putting a different slant on what are often frequently told stories.
In addition the authors highlight each player's 'High and Low' points of their Celtic career, and there's a McGrory-esque abundance of popular anecdotes and trivia throughout each chapter, and in particular the concluding 'And Another Thing..' section. For example did you know John Hughes didn't pick up a single major honour between his first and 100th goal in the Hoops? Yet by the time he netted his last (189th) he had collected six league titles, a Scottish Cup and four League Cups.
It's that type of trivia which is really the backbone of Century Bhoys. It's a fun and entertaining read and for your casual reader it is unquestionably an informative guide to the men who fired Celtic to so much glory.
For those of a more anorak disposition towards Celtic history an in-depth statistics section would not have gone a miss and on the odd occasion the book is slightly let down by some flawed research. For example the chapter on Charlie Nicholas suffers from an insistence that he was signed by George Graham when it was actually Don Howe who took him to Highbury.
But these criticisms shouldn't detract from Century Bhoys. This is a very welcome addition to the Celtic library. While there are more exalted and exhaustive tomes on Celtic and their players the authors here have produced a book which is accessible, entertaining and informative. A tribute to Celtic's greatest goal-scorers should be fun and enjoyable. 'Century Bhoys' is certainly that.
- Paperback: 288 pages
- Publisher: Black and White Publishing (15 July 2010)
- Language English
- ISBN-10: 1845022971
- ISBN-13: 978-1845022976
- Product Dimensions: 22.8 x 15.2 x 2.4 cm
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