Burns 1982-1984 Home

Tommy Burns

Match Shirt

v Tottenham Hotspur

16/08/1983

Burns shoots against Sours 1983

Celtic 1 Tottenham Hotspur 1

After the disappointment of the Glasgow Cup Final, this friendly, and the performance of the Celtic side must really have cheered up the large Celtic support who turned out. It was a great game of football, full of the better aspects of the game and the kind of football that could save us all from the current danger of dwindling attendances.

Frank McGarvey came back into the side after injury and teamed up with Celtic’s new striker, Jim Melrose for the first time.

In the 20th minute the sharpness these two showed looked to have paid off when a Jim Melrose challenge forced Clemence in the Spurs goal to knock the ball out rather than catch it. 

McGarvey was on the edge of the box to send the ball home, but the referee ruled that Melrose had committed an offence and disallowed the goal.

The Celtic side were now performing well in every department and the direct approach of the two strikers added what had been missing from the performance at Hampden a few days before.

McGarvey had seen a shot from a tight angle on the right blocked earlier, but after 42 minutes he scored from the same side after he had collected a pass from Provan who’d dispossessed Graham Roberts.

Celtic went in at half-time as worthy leaders over a Spurs team who played at tremendous speed and moved the ball about with incredible accuracy.

In the second half Celtic started with 19-year-old Jim Dobbin in place of Murdo MacLeod who had damaged a hamstring. The Parkhead youngster acquitted himself well throughout the 45 minutes and didn’t look out of place among such midfield company as Burns, Hoddle, Ardiles and McStay.

Tottenham gave a great display in the second half with passes that brought gasps from the spectators. They were unlucky not to equalise early in the half when Alan Brazil found himself clear in the box but blasted the ball high over the bar.

In the 62nd minute Garth Crooks left the field to a magnificent applause from the Parkhead faithful and was replaced by Mark Falco.

Six minutes later, the substitute had equalised for Spurs with a 20 yard shot after he’d collected a pass from Ardiles.

Fifteen minutes from the end Jim Melrose limped from the park suffering from cramp after a fine, aggressive performance at the end of a very busy week for the striker and got the applause he deserved. He was replaced by Brian McClair.

McClair, himself, seemed anxious to contribute to the match and almost immediately made a direct run into the box leaving the very fast Spurs full-back Danny Thomas, standing.

At the final whistle both teams were applauded from the park. The fans saying thanks to two teams who’d provided a real footballing spectacle.

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