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PersonalFullname: Dariusz Dziekanowski
aka: Jacki, Jackinowski, the Disco King
Born: 30 September 1962
Birthplace: Warsaw, Poland
Signed: 14 July 1989 (from Legia Warsaw)
Left: 14 Jan 1992 (£250k to Bristol City)
Debut: Hearts 1-3 Celtic, League, 12 Aug 1989
International Caps: 63
International Goals: 20
BiogDariusz Dziekanowski was an immensely talented striker who sadly lacked the commitment to make the most of his considerable talents. Having lost out on bringing back Mo Johnston ("Booooo!") back to Celtic, Jacki was seen as being the one to make us forget that failure. Didn't work at the end.
A Polish international signed for £600,000 in July 1989 from Legia Warsaw the man who would be known to Hoops fans simply as ‘Jacki’ was a top class forward who on his day was as good as any striker in Britain.
Sadly in Glasgow those days were all too infrequent as disco-loving Jacki seemed more bothered about maintaining his reputation as a playboy than as a top centre-forward. His biggest weakness was living the high life too much. Partying and clubbing was the order of the day, and staying in for rest was anathema to him.
After producing some moments of genuine magic during pre-season games Jacki was an instant idol of the Jungle and the Hoops faithful licked their lips at the prospect of the Pole turning on the style against defences in Scotland. Like past greats such as Tully and Nicholas, Jacki played with a confident swagger and a sense of showmanship which the Parkhead crowd adored.
Roy Aitken said of him "His ball control is phenomenal, he's strong, he's desperate to do well for the club... He's a natural entertainer." Paul Elliott remarked that he was awestruck by him! High praise indeed!
His competitive debut came in a 3-1 league victory at Hearts. After netting in the League Cup against Dumbarton and Queen of the South his first Premier League goal came on August 26th in a 1-1 draw with Rangers at Celtic Park. That goal was a rather scrappy and lucky affair but when it’s against Rangers no one really cares.
Just over a month later Jacki produced a startling display which would be talked about for years later. In a devastating demonstration of forward play he hit four goals in a dramatic 5-4 European Cup Winners Cup win against Partizan Belgrade at Parkhead. In typical Celtic fashion though a late goal by the visitors meant they and not Jacki or Celtic would be going through to the next round on away goals.
Jacki never came close to hitting those heights again. There were flashes of brilliance but these were rare moments among performances which were all too typically void of effort and interest. An undoubted maverick his self-indulgent nature when in possession of the ball would have been forgiven in much more gifted Celtic teams. But in a Hoops side which was the poorest since pre-Stein times such antics were rightly viewed as selfish.
The Celtic fans always loved a wayward genius with a bit of gallus and they – and manager Billy McNeill for that matter – did not lose faith completely with Jacki although the frustrations were obvious.
But while Billy was prepared to make some allowances for Jacki new boss Liam Brady – a supreme football talent but someone also well versed in the disciplined nature of the Italian game – had little time for a player who refused to mix graft with craft. On the other hand, Brady was not the wisest manager when it came to picking players especially forwards (Tommy Coyne was another able goal scorer at Celtic Park who suffered under Brady). Brady only played him once (and even then he was subbed on with 12 minutes to go).
Consequently his days at Parkhead were numbered. In 1992 Jacki – in a £250,000 deal - joined Bristol City where he stayed for a season before returning to Poland. His stay in the south west of England may have been brief but it was enough time for him to firmly establish himself as an all time Ashton Gate great (not too difficult an achievement).
Jacki played 66 games for Celtic and scored 22 goals. For all his faults his ability was high and he is remembered fondly as a character but generally most were frustrated by his lack of application to the game whilst with us.
|APPEARANCES||LEAGUE||SCOTTISH CUP||LEAGUE CUP||EUROPE||TOTAL|
Honours with Celticnone (the barren years!)
Latest page update: made by fitzpas
, Mar 31 2013, 3:44 PM EDT
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