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Celtic 6 - 2 Aberdeen

Div 1 (Old)
Celtic scorers: McGrory (5), McLean
Aberdeen scorers: Reid, MacLachlan 8.

23/10/1926 | KO:


It was a very one-sided game at Parkhead, where Aberdeen failed to come up to expectations, and were heavily defeated by Celtic. An injury to Ritchie which caused his retirement for good early in the game did not help Aberdeen, but even when he was playing the Celtic were easily the superior side. For the first ten minutes Aberdeen played well and looked like proving strong opponents for the Celtic, but after McLachlan scored from a free kick they faded out, and the Celtic had matters pretty much their own way. McGrory was in deadly form for the Celtic, his five goals being a feature of the game. Four of them came from headers, and his fifth came after clever work by McLean. McLean got the winners' other goal. The visitors worked hard, but R. Bruce was the only forward to trouble the Celtic defence, and several times only bad luck kept him from finding the net. Reid scored Aberdeen's second goal. The Celtic gave one of their best displays of the season, the entire team playing well together. The attendance would be 12,000.

Source: The Scotsman, 23rd October 1926

Expectations that the meeting of Aberdeen and Celtic would provide a thrilling struggle at Parkhead were not realised, Celtic winning almost as they liked by 6 goals to 2. The sensational downfall of Aberdeen was entirely attributable to an unfortunate injury to Ritchie, their right back, who was off the field for the greater part of the game. Aberdeen had just opened the scoring through MacLachlan from a free kick after eight minutes' play, and were playing confidently, when Ritchie, in tackling Mclnally, came by his mishap. In his crippled state he carried on for a short time, but was obviously unable to do himself justice, and after Celtic had equalised and taken the lead he went to outside right. Reid going to right half, and Cosgrove to right back. In this position Ritchie aggravated his injury, and was compelled to leave the field 25 minutes after the start. Aberdeen subsequently became disorganised, and at the interval they found themselves three goals in arrears, all four for the Celtic being scored by McGrory, the centre forward. In the second period Aberdeen played four forwards, Smith taking up the left back position. Handicapped as they were, they continued to put up a plucky resistance, but were outplayed. D. Bruce misheaded into his own goal, and McLean brought the total of Celtic goals up to six. A great shot Reid provided Aberdeen with a second. McGrory, for Celtic, had the ball in the net a seventh time, but he was adjudged to have been off-side. From being a keen and even struggle the whole aspect of the game changed when Ritchie was injured, and after Celtic had registered their third goal. Aberdeen in their disorganised state never really challenged the winners, who might even have augmented their big total, McLean, Mclnally, and Connolly missing comparatively easy chances to score.


Quite apart from the handicap under which they worked, few of the Aberdeen players reproduced anything approaching their best form, and individually and collectively they compared unfavourably with Celtic. Blackwell's anticipation appeared to be at fault when McGrory obtained at least two of his goals, as the goalkeeper remained below the bar when he might have gone out to meet the ball. D. Bruce stood up well to the brilliant attacking combination of Celtic, but his impetuosity cost the fifth goal, when he headed past his own goalkeeper. Cosgrove was not a success as a back, but Smith did well in that position iin the second period. There was a big disparity between the respective half-back lines, MacLachlan being the only Aberdeen middleman to approach the Celtic standard.
After a sprightly beginning the Aberdeen forwards fell away badly, but as their numbers were reduced to four at a comparatively early stage of the game, it will appreciated they had to work at a serious disadvantage. Reid and Cheyne did much that was clever, but both were inclined to attempt too much, and a tendency to hang on the ball spoilt several otherwise good moves. R. Bruce tried hard to penetrate the Celtic defence, and several times had them puzzled, but he got very few chances to shoot. Neither McDermid nor Smith gave of their best, although the latter was more effective when he took up the left back position.


Celtic were a wonderful combination, who played brilliant football. All their forwards excelled in bewildering trickery. They played splendidly to each other, and invariably in conjunction with their half-backs. McGrory's dashing leadership was a big factor in the game, and all his four goals - three with his head - were brilliantly taken. Mclnally and McLean, on the left wing, showed a brilliant understanding, and their triangular work with Macfarlane was a feature. Connolly and Thomson, on the right, were not so clever, but were very dangerous. Macfarlane and Wilson were exceptionally clever wing half-backs, and W. McStay was the best back on the field. In goal Shevlin got little to do, and appeared to be at fault on the two occasions Aberdeen beat aim. There were 12,000 spectators?rather a disappointing attendance in view of the fact that this was the most attractive fixture in Glasgow.

Source: Press & Journal, 25th October 1926

Celtic Teamsheet
Shevlin; McStay, Hilley; Wilson, J. McStay, Macfarlane; Connolly, Thomson, McGrory, McInally, McLean
Attendance: 12,000
Venue: Celtic Park, Glasgow
Referee: J. B. Kennedy, Mossend
Next Match
10 Jul 2024 / 19:00 / Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead