Celtic Snippets – An early football special! (1894)

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The Bear has been busy in the Celtic archives and come up with these details of how the Celtic players and fans travelled together to Edinburgh for an important Scottish Cup tie in 1894: 

 

All eyes, of course, are turned Eastwards tomorrow, and doubtless not a few will take advantage of the excursion train which leaves at 12-45 for Easter Road Station (some two minutes walk from the field), and which is guaranteed to arrive in Edinburgh at 2 o’clock.  Elaborate preparations are being made for the reception of a large crowd, and trestle stands are being erected all over the ground to assist in witnessing the match.  Tickets for the train are being sold at Mr J.M’Kays, Mr W. Maleys, and can be  had on Friday or Saturday morning.  The team, at least most of them, will leave by the 12 o’clock express, and the remainder will follow by the excursion train.  Already a large number of tickets have been bought up, and there is quite a hand of Association officials already included in the list.  I have not yet heard who has the distinguished priviilege of “blowing the whistle” but whoever he may be I hope he may not be affected with the ravings of a few who predict “fights,” &c, and that he will not be intimidated in any way by the crowd from doing whatever may be his duty. 

 

During the week the Celts have been getting fit by a process of close training, and will turn out on Saturday strong and sturdy, I hope.  W. Maley has been taking his share and seems fit, but in view of past mishaps he will not enter the field if he feels that in the the slightest degree he is likely to be weak or shaky. 

 

Easter Road was still a volatile venue for Celtic to visit at the time, the players having been attacked on previous encounters due to the bad blood that existed between the clubs.  Willie Maley had recently set up an athletic outfitters business in the Gallowgate (a sports shop to you and I) and was selling tickets for the train to Easter Road from here.  Here is his advert from the SFA Annual of 1894/5:  

 

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Celtic lost 2-0 but successfully protested the result.  The game was replayed two weeks later and Celtic won 2-0 thanks to goals from Johnny Divers and John Campbell.  Celtic were knocked out of the cup by Dundee away in the next round.  There was no joy in the League that season either, Celtic finishing second to Heart of Midlothian by give points and four ahead of third-placed Rangers. 

Perhaps the team weren’t quite “strong and sturdy” enough after all . . .

 

Read more Celtic Snippets here:  https://theshamrockglasgow.wordpress.com/2014/06/17/celtic-snippets-the-celtic-view-from-yesteryear-2/

 

 

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