Pride Of Lions

Hey Readers Sometimes you may see a comment on Facebook or a newspaper or magazine a feature entitled on this day in history. Well as a football fan and more importantly as a Celtic girl I know only too well the significance of the 25th of  May. You see it  was on this day in 1967 that my club won the European Cup and became not only the first British club to win the big cup but also the first team from Northern Europe to claim the trophy. Now flattering as these descriptions may be I prefer another one which is that we are so far at least the Only Scottish Club ever to win to claim the world’s most prestigious club trophy. So I’ve finally written a poem,  (I’ve been meaning to do it for years), to commemorate my club’s and Scottish Football’s greatest ever achievement I’ve titled Pride Of Lions and if you’re a Celtic fan I’m sure you’ll enjoy the read. 

Pride Of Lions

Written off
told they had no chance of glory
11 local bhoys wrote their chapter of the Celtic story
on the night that changed our history
with courage , dignity , passion and pride
this side Stein had moulded
had won a domestic treble
of League Cup, Scottish Cup, and Championship Title
but this was overlooked by the press and media
who claimed the Celtic way
was not the way to win
against Inter Millan and Herrera’s iron defence
all out attack made no sense
and we know the press are always right
but this team would not be cowered by the night or the occasion
with the hopes of a nation
they took the field
refusing to yield
to the pre prepared script
Stein knew the strengths of his players
he believed in the attacking flair
of the team
to him it was about the glory and the dream
which will be forever Celtic
the atmosphere was electric
in the Lisbon sun
but we were soon 1-0 down
as an Inter player was fouled in the box
needless to say they scored from the spot
now the rot would set in and we would fall apart
according to the press
no doubt the British know best brigade
were salivating at the prospect
so we were sorry to disappoint them
but we kept on keeping on
playing the game in the Celtic tradition
the fact we were still a goal down at the break was irrelevant
we hadn’t come to Lisbon
for the hell of it
we had come to win
claim the glory
play our part in the Celtic story
make history in the right and proper way
this would be our day
and we would be crowned  winners
champions of Europe
Stein knew the strength of his players
he knew attacking flair would break defensive resistance
even a wall as sound as Inter’s
would crumble in the end
if we could only get an equaliser
the game would be ours for the taking
as our opponents would have to attack
this would leave them exposed at the back
and winner would eventually be scored
It is hard to ignore the logic of his thoughts
as the second half started the way the first had ended
with Celtic in the ascendency
there were a few near misses
some trickery from Jinky
and smooth silky passes
we were giving the world
a master class on how to play the game
then it came and our fans sensed it was on
as Tommy Gemmell sent a scorcher to the Inter net
we had the goal that changed the script
we were no longer bit part players
or members of the supporting cast
glory could be ours
then at last it arrived
with only five minutes to go
Stevie Chalmers scored what proved to be the winner
Celtic had won the European cup
now for those who try to claim
it was down to luck
let’s see, in the 90 minutes of play
we had 45 shots to our opponents 3
we forced them to defend 10 corners whilst conceding none
so I think the facts tell the story
of a team who played for the glory and dream
a team who fought with all they had for the success they gained
we may never see their likes again
though we live in hope that we discover
players of the calibre of those
who wore the hoops that night
when a club like no other won
club football’s most glittering prize  when the lambs who had taken the field
roared with the pride of lions 

@ Gayle Smith 2016

NB This poem is dedicated to the Lisbon Lions whose names will be forever immortal they are

Ronnie Simpson
Jim Craig
Tommy Gemmell
Bobby Murdoch
Billy McNeill (Captain)
John Clark
Jimmy Johnstone
Willie Wallace
Stevie Chalmers
Bertie Auld
Bobby Lennox

Manager Jock Stein

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2 thoughts on “Pride Of Lions

    • Hey Joanne I thought you might like it and I’m glad I was proven right.

      As you say it was a great time in our history and we showed the world the way to play the beautiful game at its best and that way is called the Celtic way

      So remember this my Celtic sister we stand on the shoulders of giants and from now until the end of time You’ll Never Walk Alone.

      Hail Hail.

      Lots Of Love
      Gayle XXX

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