Celtic in Europe

Iconic walk out in the Lisbon sun 1967

Iconic walk out in the Lisbon sun 1967

Since their first game in European competition in 1962, against Spanish side Valencia, to the present date Glasgow Celtic Football Club have enjoyed a love affair with European football unsurpassed by most and not even closely rivalled by many.

My own memories are founded on dreich nights in the 70’s when walking hand in hand with my Grandfather from Westmuir Street to Springield Road and onto London Road  we seemed, along with countless others, to be drawn almost mystically towards the floodlights rising above Celtic Park. The lights choreographed a fascinating dance between the evening drizzle and the mist acting like a magical magnet to the fans flocking to the stadium.

The love affair with Europe was without doubt cemented on that glorious day in May 1967 when Jock and his Lisbon Lions became the first British side to win the European Cup. The significance of that victory continues to fuel the positive energy within our club and in no small way contributed to the death of our famous rivals in the past few years.

The glorious victories and defeats, some defeats dragged from the jaws of victory, the slaying of the greatest clubs on the planet under the Parkhead lights all contribute to a tapestry which is so uniquely Celtic that there really is validity in the claim that we are a club like no other. Players, managers and custodians many of them genuinely legendary have come and gone with their reputations enhanced on the back of European triumphs and adventures.

There is however a band of legends who really make the European games unique both at home and away. I do of course refer to the incredible supporters whose global reputation has seen them recognised by UEFA and many of the worlds superstars as perhaps the greatest fans in the world. The fans tales and recollections of European nights are and always have been of great interest and of great entertainment value to me and it’s with that in mind that I’ve decided to try and coordinate a collection of memories from fans from that first game in 1962 to the recent tie with Internazionale.

We are looking for fans recollections of home games, trips away and it’s our goal to have fans recant their tales of every tie Celtic have ever played. On a non-commercial site, contributed to by fans for the sole entertainment of the same fans.

Fans in Seville

Fans in Seville

CelticinEurope.com will be launched later this year, all being well, and there will be no barrier to submission of tales. No great literary requirements other than the emotional bond that exists within a Celtic heart displayed online. Anyone who has a story to tell can claim a game for themselves and tell their tale for others enjoyment. Over time we may have multiple accounts fo the same events, as many would justify, but the initial aim is to cover every game. No mean feat but we are no ordinary support. So if you were in Lisbon, Seville or Madrid. Or perhaps Amsterdam, Prague or Barcelona. Or any of the other European destinations the hoops have graced you can claim a game and tell your story.

Similarly you can claim a game at Celtic Park from the night we slaughtered arguably the best there’s ever been in Barca to the controversial double header with Partizan Belgrade. From the disgraceful visit of Atletico Madrid to the humbling of Manchester United. Every game has a story to be told from a fans perspective.

The idea is embryonic and will no doubt shoot off in many directions over the coming months with a dedicated forum already being discussed but for now this is just a heads up that soon every fan who has a story to tell will have a platform to share it with the Celtic family across the world.

In the meantime enjoy the Party on Sunday and stay on board the Deila Bus…Hail Hail




On the comeback trail


Drive me to the moon


Having ignored and neglected my blog or as I would describe it my escape for random thoughts I have decided to give it another go.

The past year has been eventful if you’re a Scotsman and a lover of football with a side helping of politics there has been an almost daily dosage of opinion and drama.

Over the coming weeks I’ll try to re-engage with the bloggersphere and throw some personal opinions out there in addition to those I’ve had published in magazines elsewhere.

Here we go again…



Succinctly put.

Has Leigh Griffiths been living on a different planet?

Succinctly put.

Succinctly put.

Footballers in this country are cast rather stereotypically and perhaps at times unkindly as not being the brightest bulbs in the box and the extent of conversation we hear from them includes tired, but media friendly, clichés before or after football matches.

It’s no great surprise that there will be some amongst the footballing ranks who are well worthy of that stereotype when we encourage boys to prioritise their football commitments over their education from a very young age but this past weekend Leigh Griffiths has taken the stupidity bar to a whole new level.

Leigh was caught on camera yesterday singing, indeed leading the singing, of a chorus of the Hearts are going bust (see below). How stupid can one man be?


I mean unless Leigh has been living on a different planet for the past two years he should know that a football club cannot go bust!!!


I can remember the days when we all mistakenly believed, like poor Leigh, that a club go bust. Indeed it’s not so long ago that photographs of hearses outside Celtic Park or headlines such as RIP Rangers were emblazoned across the tabloid newspapers in this country. How was Leigh to know that these headlines were only designed to sell newspapers and were not actually the truth……mmm, let ponder that one again.

I remember my Grandfather saying, “if it’s in the papers son it must be true”. Well, as much as I loved my dear departed Grandfather I think we all know that this is certainly not the case in modern sports journalism in Scotland at any rate.

Hopefully, someone will take Leigh aside and explain that a club cannot go bust and that he was singing about an event which simply cannot take place. I’m not sure he’ll understand but on the basis that Mr Einstein (photographed above) would have difficulty following the logic of such luminaries as Derek Johnstone or Gordon Smith then perhaps on this occasion we should not be too harsh on Leigh who undoubtedly missed a fair chunk of his senior education whilst pursuing his dream of playing professional football.

Interestingly today I read in the newspapers that Hearts as a club are on the verge of liquidation because of difficulties achieving agreements with the Lithuanian creditors of the club. You see it’s so easy to become confused when talking about liquidation and football clubs. I suspect what the aforementioned Mr Johnstone and Mr Smith meant was that the dictionary definitions, the business definitions, the accounting definitions, the legal definitions and any other relevant definition of liquidation can apply to football clubs as long as that club isn’t Rangers because……and here I’m afraid my brain like Leigh’s becomes confused……..well just because.

The truly hysterically funny slant to all of this is the MSM attempts to justify the newly formed viewpoint. As Albert said, “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough”.

I mean what next? Ex Celtic players appearing on national radio proclaiming that a title win is devalued and Rangers were treated disgracefully by Scottish Football…nah, too far fetched, that would never happen.

In a country where the airbrush is taken to history and facts in such a cavalier and disdainful fashion how can anyone blame Leigh for anything other than daft boyness.

An educated man, and sadly dearly departed, included all of the following links/quotes in a blog piece when trying to explain things to us mere mortals. Paul you are sadly missed. 

– The Herald: “Air of unreality as 140 years of history is formally ended in less than nine minutes” (The Herald, 15 June 2012: http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/air-of-unreality-as-140-years-of-history-is-formally-ended-in-less-than-nine-minutes.17876625).

– Roddie Forsyth: “Rangers in crisis: the final whistle sounds on Rangers’ 140 years of history” (The Telegraph, 12 June 2012: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/rangers/9327256/Rangers-in-crisis-the-final-whistle-sounds-on-Rangers-140-years-of-history.html).

– Jim Traynor: “Rangers FC as we know them are dead. It’s all over. They are about to shut down for ever…They’ll slip into liquidation within the next couple of weeks with a new company emerging but 140 years of history, triumph and tears, will have ended… No matter how Charles Green attempts to dress it up, a newco equals a new club. When the CVA was thrown out Rangers as we know them died.” (Daily Record, 13 June 2012: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/james-traynor-spl-will-not-be-able-1129166).

Of course, journalists are not the most reliable barometer of definitive opinion, but why would they express such an unambiguous view in the first place? Even Charles Green held the same categorical viewpoint [speaking to the BBC]:  “…the history, the tradition, everything that is great about this Club, is swept aside.”

I’m sure there will be more confusion to follow.


Tumble Drift out…




You can trust these guys.

Personal recommendations – The list begins.

Best advertising their is!!!

The list of personal recommendations will grow week by week and is intended to offer no more than a confirmation that those included do their job well, in my personal experience, and are worthy of consideration if you’re on the look out for their type of service or product. Tumbleweed and Driftwood do not receive any form of kickback from those listed but if you mention our name when you introduce yourself to them and the blog gets another visitor that’ll do for me. I say another visitor because I have no intention of telling the various listees that there is a recommendations list therefore if they end up reading the blog it’s because someone else has enjoyed their service and mentioned where they found them. The rest is self explanatory …listing numbers are not intended as ratings, simply the order they spring to mind…

1. The Berkeley Clinic – Glasgow, Scotland

The place for great dentistry especially for those with Dental Phobia.

2. Tuite Opticians – Wishaw, Scotland

Family friendly service and able to accommodate everyone from basic specs to those fancy designer numbers.

3. Worldwide Accom – Rome, Italy

Looking for an apartment in Rome these guys are worth a try, reliable and great local knowledge.

4. St Andrews Old Course Hotel – St Andrews, Scotland

Golfer or not this place oozes style, comfort and a Scottish Welcome.

5. Amarone – Glasgow, Scotland

Great Italian restaurant in Glasgow City Centre, great food, service and affordable.

6. Apollo Window Blinds – Ayr, Scotland

Outstanding service and product range from a great wee Scottish company. Many more to follow soon… Tumble Drift out…

Scottish Independence will lead to Armageddon

Tumbleweed & Driftwood

A vote for a brighter future or Armageddon? A vote for a brighter future or Armageddon?
Scotland as an independent nation just will not survive or cope with all that comes with going it alone, is the message I hear when listening to the No campaigners on Scottish Independence.

Is it just me or is that the impression you get when listening to the public schoolboys currently tasked with governing our country?

In recent times Scottish Football suffered a life changing event when Rangers Football Club was liquidated and during the period of uncertainty which followed that insolvency event there were cries from those holding office in our national game declaring that unless everyone, from fans to club chairmen, from administrators to rule makers, recognised that maintaining the long established set up was the only way to avoid footballs own version of Armageddon.

The reason I mention this footballing event is simply because it strikes me that the…

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Every blogger should have one.

This is worth a try.

This is worth a try.

As we wander through life we all collect them and we like to share them with friends, family and colleagues etc.

I am of course speaking about personal recommendations.

Your favourite restaurants or hotels, the companies who have offered you a level of service you thought exceptional, the products you could not live without and the people who provide them.

It’s my feeling that individual bloggers could consider, time permitting, including a personal recommendations page offering feedback on the positive experiences that they would not hesitate to recommend to someone reading their blog.

This is not about free advertising for businesses, nor would I expect a kickback from those written about, it will just be a random section of posts which hopefully will help someone at some point when they’re looking for something in particular. No endorsement just a recounting of personal experience.

Personally I’ll be including everything from my optician to my dentist, from my holiday experiences to the guys who fitted my kitchen and a whole host of things in between.

Recommendations will be brief and to the point, no sales blurb or special offers🙂 If anyone follows through on one of the recommendations and it works out, as it has for me, then that’s viewed simply as a favour well done and a comment on the blog about your experience would be appreciated.

First set of personal recommendations will be posted soon. There will not be a new post for every recommendation but they will just be added to the one item for the timebeing, easily accessed through the My Recommendations tag on the menu bar.

Tumble Drift out…

Dare to Dream

Yesterday I posted a short blog article about the generosity of spirit shown by Albion Rovers Football Club who, whilst no doubt experiencing financial challenges themselves, made a sizeable donation to a local West of Scotland children’s charity Cash for Kids and the response through my little blog has been astonishing. As a novice to the blogging community I’m used to seeing visitors come and go in relatively small numbers dependant on the content of any given article I post but I was genuinely unprepared yesterday for the deluge of visitors who picked up on and shared my thoughts.

Dare to Dream

Dare to Dream

As I post this morning over 2000 people have read that blog item alone and as a result a high proportion of them visited other pages posted on my blog. To everyone who visited I say a heartfelt thanks for taking the time to read my random thoughts and I’d encourage anyone who does visit to leave a comment, good or bad to give me an idea of where the blog may be resonating with you. To those on Twitter who felt that it warranted re-tweeting thanks a lot, it all gives me a boost to keep the blog going.

I should thank Albion Rovers again because it was their generosity of spirit which provoked my scribbling and I can consider myself fortunate to experience the positive ripple effect created by their act of kindness and generosity.

I noted with a smile a tweet from the chairman of Albion Rovers yesterday thanking everyone for their kind wishes and informing us all that Albion Rovers were officially trending on Twitter, I hope they continue to trend and they get to experience the benefit of their self made ripple effect along the way. If justice is to be served, in footballing terms, they will experience a ripple best measured on the Richter Scale on St Patricks Day 2014. I know from experience that Coatbridge has a flair for celebrating that particular day and maybe, just maybe if the wee rovers continue to dare to dream they will ignite a party which will be remembered in that area of Scotland for a long, long time.

And no telling how many bouts of cramp you suffer either :-)

And no telling how many bouts of cramp you will suffer either🙂

Footballing success on Monday night or not, the name of Albion Rovers has been illuminated throughout Scotland and further afield through the wonders of Twitter, Fans Forums and Facebook to name but a few as an example of what a community conscious club is all about. That should, hopefully, generate benefits which will help the club continue to move forward into the next chapter of their history.

Congratulations and thank you to all at Albion Rovers.

Tumble Drift out…