Monday, November 7, 2011

Scottish League 1985 1986 "The Old Firm" Rangers Celtic

22 March 1986
Ibrox Park,
Glasgow

Attendance 44000

  On the morning of the final Old Firm derby of the 1985-86 season, the Daily Mirror ran a transfer exclusive ahead of the looming deadline. "Terry Butcher will be on the move from Ipswich before next Thursday's transfer deadline – and Manchester United are favourites to sign him. United boss Ron Atkinson will make a £650,000 bid ... Tottenham and Arsenal are also keen to snap up Butcher, but Spurs are struggling to raise money and the uncertainty over the manager's position at Arsenal makes it unlikely that they will move in. That leaves the field for United." Anyway, up in Glasgow, what a match. In tempest at Ibrox, and with Davie Cooper dropped to the bench by Jock Wallace in favour of Ally McCoist, the two rivals served up a classic. Mo Johnston turned in the opener for Celtic. Brian McClair quickly prodded home a second. Celtic's Willie McStay was then sent off after half an hour for two bookings, having managed to clatter Ted McMinn four times in the opening changes. With 10 minutes of the half remaining, Ian Durrant and Ally McCoist set up Cammy Fraser to head Rangers back into the game.

After the restart, Johnston burst through to make it 3-1, but Rangers kept up their momentum. McCoist sashayed in from the left to smash a shot into the bottom-left corner, and Robert Fleck flashed home an equaliser just before the hour. Fraser then helped home a Dave McKinnon looping header to give Rangers the lead. But the 10 men were not to be denied, Murdo MacLeod curling one into the top-right corner from distance. It would prove a priceless point for Celtic, who were in seemingly hopeless pursuit of Hearts at the top of the Premier Division table. And we all know how that one panned out. But it proved a handy result for Rangers in the longer term, too. In the boardroom after the game, Wallace had entertained his directors with a lusty version of The Sash My Father Wore. Given that Rangers had failed to beat a team playing with 10 men for an hour, despite scoring four times, and would end the season in fifth place, 15 points behind eventual champs Celtic and unlucky losers Hearts, the celebrations seemed disproportionate. Wallace was shown the door and replaced by Graeme Souness, who had revolution in mind. His marquee signing that summer: Terry Butcher.

Rangers:- Walker, Burns (D Ferguson), Munro, McPherson, McKinnon, Durrant, McMinn (Cooper), Russell, Fleck, Fraser, McCoist.
Goals:- Fraser 34, McCoist 52, Fleck 59, Fraser 63.
Celtic:- Bonner, W. McStay, Whyte, Aitken, O'Leary, MacLeod, P. McStay (McInally), Burns, Archdeacon (Grant 46), McClair, Johnston.
Goals:- Johnston 21, McClair 29, Burns 47, McLeod 70.
Sent Off:- W McStay 33.

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In 1986 the Old Firm played out what was to be only the second 4-4 draw in their history, in front of 41006 delighted fans at Ibrox. A sodden day in Glasgow saw some real legends take part in a classic contest. It was Rangers who controlled the match early on but were still 2-0 down. Mo Johnstone scored the first after a Brian McClair mis-hit, then minutes later McClair himself was on target. Willie McStay was sent off for Celtic after half an hour giving Cammy Fraser the chance to exploit the space, making it 2-1. Tommy burns scored Celtic's third. Rangers then scored three goals in an incredible 11 minutes through McCoist, Fleck and a second for Fraser take a 4-3 lead. In the typically explosive atmosphere of the Old Firm derby Celtic refused to lie down. It was down to Murdo MacLeod to settle the score with a peach of a 30-yard drive on 70 minutes.

 Rangers were probably the better side in th early stages of the match, but found themselves 2-0 down within half an hour. A good run by Paul McStay in 21 mins, and a great cross by Owen Archdeacon, Brian McClair mis-hit the ball and it fell to the feet of Johnston and Celtic were one up. Eight mins later and McClair fired the ball past Walker in the Rangers goal to double Celtic's lead. Willie McStay was then sent off for a foul on McMinn in 33 minutes and a minute later Fraser pulled one back for Rangers. Half Time 1-2 In the second half, Peter Grant replaced Archdeacon to make up for the loss of McStay, and 2 minutes after the restart Tommy burns scored Celtic's third. Rangers then scord three goals in 11 mins through McCoist, Fleck and fraser again to take the lead. Celtic refused to give in and a great 30 yard drive from Murdo MacLeod levelled the scores again and the match finished 4-4.


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