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Guest blog by Tommy Gemmell

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Today, we have the small matter of a guest blog by Lisbon Lion, right back, left back, dominator of play, years ahead of his time, scorer of two of our three most important goals, a truly modern player and one of Europe’s finest…….. Tommy Gemmell.

Tommy has spent the last few years ‘getting it all down on paper’, and this year CQN is publishing the definitive autobiography of a remarkable football player, icon and man.  It’s not his first book (which predicted we would win the European Cup in 1969), and it’s not his second, but it is a book with enormous sincerity and insight on the days when Scotland produced giants of the world game.

Inspirational people can inspire with little effort.  I described a goal to Tommy as “a great goal”, he gave me a half smile and said, “Every goal is a great goal”.  Tommy knows what it means to score goals so valuable they will live in legend as long as the game is played, but he was able to convince me that knocking the ball over the line for Celtic in a relatively meaningless game against vastly inferior opposition was, for him, indescribable, although he did a good job of describing it in the book.

Legends are made quickly these days but 40 years on, his contribution still towers.  He has really enjoyed working on the book and is looking forward to getting the final copy in his hands, and most of all, the interactions it will bring with the Celtic support.

He has put some words down for us in today’s blog, including an opportunity to ask him some questions – for inclusion in a special section of the book.  Hope you enjoy it………..

By TOMMY GEMMELL:

I am absolutely delighted Celtic Quick News is publishing my book ‘All The Best’ in the near future. The title is a bit of a giveaway as to what to expect within the pages of what I hope is an entertaining and insightful read.

I’ve gone through all the Celtic teams I’ve played in to come up with my eleven from heaven. Obviously, the Lisbon Lions are in a class of their own, so I haven’t touched them. Simpson, Craig and Yours Truly; Murdoch, McNeill and Clark; Johnstone, Wallace, Chalmers, Auld and Lennox. That’s about as close to perfection you’ll ever see in a football team.

We all had different strengths, but we really gelled as a formation. If that lot could keep Jock Stein satisfied, then who am I to change that line-up?

But there will be a few surprises along the way with my many selections. I’ve dipped into the international scene, too, and there are some great tales about Denis Law, Alan Gilzean and others. And, of course, I could never ignore the one and only Jinky,.I still miss that little rascal, but what a player!

I hope the book is interesting and enjoyable for many reasons because I really reveled in looking through the past. I relished ‘Heart Of A Lion: The Willie Wallace Story’ by my old pal. If my own memoirs are as appreciated as those of Willie, I’ll be well satisfied.

I have never before spoken at length about my friendship with George Best, for instance. Bestie and I had a good relationship and I would often look him up when I was in London on business. Well, what would you prefer? A boring old seminar about the world of finance or a couple of beers with Bestie? Thought so!

And there were also meetings with Brian Clough when I was at Nottingham Forest and he was manager at Derby County. Our paths crossed several times and I have to say he was a completely one-off individual. Not sure if I could have played for him, though!

And, of course, I could never ignore what Jock Stein did for me as a Celtic player. We may not always have seen eye-to-eye, but you can’t take away what he achieved at Celtic. He completely turned the club upside down. Mind you, he could be ruthless and I know what I’m talking about because I was on the receiving end a few times.

Without warning, he dropped me from the line-up for the League Cup Final against St.Johnstone in 1969. I was so livid that I asked for a transfer the following day. And yet Jock knew I never wanted to leave Celtic. Who in their right mind would? I was heart broken at the time, but I’ll tell you more in ‘All The Best’. All will be revealed, as they say.

I am going to try something different for the book.  Today, Celtic Quick News is open for you to send me questions on the blog.  I will take the questions and answer them in a hardback small run of the book, all of which will be signed.  So, don’t hesitate – get writing and I’ll be only too delighted to reply. If you have anything you’d like to ask me about my career in football, or anything else for that matter, please post on CQN today and the guys will forward me on the questions. I’ll do the rest!

I have always loved the interaction with the Celtic support. Even today I’ll get stopped in the street and fans will ask me about my European Cup Final goal. Mischievously, I’ll always respond with, ‘Which one?’ People seem to have forgotten that I scored in TWO European Cup Finals – against Inter Milan and Feyenoord. Most folk, though, don’t want to talk about the latter. Understandable, I suppose.

So, please send in your questions and I promise to answer every single one. And I will give it to you straight. I have also been promised my own account on CQN so when I am signing your books I am going to log in to CQN and have a chat with everyone. Paul will let you know when this is happening.

That’s the great part of ‘All The Best’. I’ve been able to tell it like it is and I hope the supporters appreciate the sentiments.

I am delighted Celtic Quick News guys are publishing the book, it’s an exciting adventure for us all, and I do hope you get as much enjoyment reading the book as I did putting it together.

All the best!

Tommy Gemmell

We’re so lucky to have these guys. They have been a gift beyond all recognition.

If you would like to read the new CQN Magazine, GO HERE to read properly, and for FREE, the graphic below is just a taster.
[calameo code=0003901710a55b5798f06 lang=en page=1 hidelinks=1 width=100% height=500]

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  1. Celticrollercoaster supports the Dambhoys on

    “CQteN Dream Team”

     

     

    Now is your chance to select your CQteN dream from the last decade

     

     

     

    Email us on doccqten@gmail.com

     

     

    **********42 teams submitted to date*************

     

     

     

    Rules are very simple:

     

     

    Select 11 players from the list below, forming either a 4-3-3 or 4-4-2 formation

     

     

    So you will need:

     

     

    1 goalkeeper

     

    2 full backs

     

    2 centre backs

     

    3 or 4 midfielders

     

    2 or 3 forwards

     

     

    and of course….

     

     

    1 manager.

     

     

     

    Each player on the list below has made at least 10 starting appearances from July 2004 to date during the CQteN decade.

     

     

    So no Henrik, then!

     

     

    When you are selecting the players, you should ideally base your selection on their performances during the CQteN decade, but then again that is your choice.

     

     

    Send your selection to us by email to doccqten@gmail.com with your CQN blog name (if you do not have one, then you need to get thinking as well)

     

     

    Anybody can enter: bloggers, lurkers, friends and family, but you can only enter ONCE.

     

     

    The closing date for entries is 3pm Sunday 9th March 2014

     

     

    The CQteN dream team will be announced at the CQteN night on Friday 14th March and there will be a couple of prizes for the closest teams selected to the winning team.

     

     

    Over the coming weeks, to assist you in your selection, we will select a category and list the players relevant appearances and goals. So watch out for these on CQN.

     

     

    Good luck and get selecting.

     

     

     

    HH

     

     

    CRC

     

     

     

    Goalkeepers

     

     

    Artur Boruc

     

     

    David Marshall

     

     

    Fraser Forster

     

     

    Lukasz Zaluska

     

     

    Mark Brown

     

     

    Rab Douglas

     

     

     

    Full Backs

     

     

    Adam Matthews

     

     

    Andreas Hinkel

     

     

    Cha Du-Ri

     

     

    Charlie Mulgrew

     

     

    Daniel Fox

     

     

    Darnell Fisher

     

     

    Edson Braafheid

     

     

    Emilio Izaguirre

     

     

    Jackie McNamara

     

     

    Lee Naylor

     

     

    Mark Wilson

     

     

    Mikael Lustig

     

     

    Mo Camara

     

     

    Paul Caddis

     

     

    Paul Telfer

     

    Ulrik Laursen

     

     

     

    Centre Backs

     

     

    Bobo Balde

     

     

    Daniel Majstorovic

     

    Darren O’Dea

     

     

    Efe Ambrose

     

     

    Gary Caldwell

     

     

    Glenn Loovens

     

     

    John Kennedy

     

     

    Joos Valgaeren

     

     

    Josh Thompson

     

     

    Kelvin Wilson

     

     

    Stanislav Varga

     

     

    Stephen McManus

     

     

    Steven Pressley

     

     

    Thomas Rogne

     

     

    Virgil van Dijk

     

     

     

    Midfielders

     

     

    Aiden McGeady

     

     

    Alan Thompson

     

     

    Baram Kayal

     

     

    Barry Robson

     

     

    Didier Agathe

     

     

    Evander Sno

     

     

    Efrain Juarez

     

     

    Jiri Jarosik

     

     

    Joe Ledley

     

     

    Juninho Paulista

     

     

    Kris Commons

     

     

    Landry N’Guemo

     

     

    Marc Crosas

     

     

    Massimo Donati

     

     

    Neil Lennon

     

     

    Niall McGinn

     

     

    Pat McCourt

     

     

    Paul Hartley

     

     

    Ross Wallace

     

     

    Roy Keane

     

     

    Scott Brown

     

     

    Shaun Maloney

     

     

    Shunsuke Nakamura

     

     

    Stephen Pearson

     

     

    Stiliyan Petrov

     

     

    Sung-Yong Ki

     

     

    Thomas Gravesen

     

     

    Victor Wanyama

     

     

    Zheng Zhi

     

     

     

    Forwards

     

     

    Anthony Stokes

     

     

    Chris Sutton

     

    Craig Beattie

     

     

    Craig Bellamy

     

     

    Derek Riordan

     

     

    Gary Hooper

     

     

    Georgios Samaras

     

     

    Henri Camara

     

     

    James Forrest

     

     

    Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink

     

     

    John Hartson

     

     

    Kenny Miller

     

     

    Lassad Nouioui

     

     

    Maciej Zurawski

     

     

    Marc-Antoine Fortune

     

     

    Robbie Keane

     

     

    Scott McDonald

     

     

    Teemu Pukki

     

     

    Tony Watt

     

     

    Managers

     

     

    Neil Lennon

     

     

    Tony Mowbray

     

     

    Gordon Strachan

     

     

    Martin O’Neill

  2. Yet another on about the ” dramatically decreasing crowds” at Celtic Park. If crowds were falling as often ,as dramatically and for as long as some claim, there would be no one at the games at all. Negative nonsense.

     

    Good night all

     

     

    JJ

  3. Eddie good luck on Friday mate. I’m please a few of the CQNers enjoy it and have a laugh along the way too.

     

     

    Can I have Raspberries: Working on a Friday! yuk.

  4. Hi Tommy

     

     

    If you were a poster on here would you be a mineshafter or a happyclapper ?

     

     

    Plus did you find playing in England with Nottingham Forrest a much tougher league football wise than here in Scotland

     

     

    Thanks

  5. Have met TG on two occasions and on one asked him about the “perceived” bias towards the now died team and in particular the banning of ref Callaghan following an incident following a game at CP in if memory serves 1966. He would not be drawn on it and I suspect this will still be the same.

     

     

    BCW..haven’t walked yet but I run a bus and can guarantee many have. Doubtful if bus will see the season out.

     

     

    JJ. Only being realistic.

  6. The Lady of the Lake pub Bridge of Allan summer of 1981

     

     

    Margaret McGill: Nice party! Thanks for a great time. My friend here wants to take some of the party decor home he’s a bit drunk …is that ok? like this blue balloon here. Later!

     

    Tommy Gemmell (For it is he the publican): Heh..where you going w/that Rangers player?

  7. eddieinkirkmichael

     

     

    21:27 on 12 February, 2014

     

     

    The Bruce’s heart was indeed taken on Crusade, but to Spain, not the Holy Land.

     

    Black Douglas took it, he also brought it back and it is now buried in ?Melrose Abbey?

  8. Eddieinkm

     

    My late brother, John, worked in Stornoway in the 60’s . Very few RCs there.

     

    He worked in the hospital as a registrar. A lovely singer and musician, and afficionado of Matt McGinn.

     

    When half cut he boasted about his role in the first choir at midnight Mass there.

     

    He also spoke highly of McDonald’s black pudding.

     

    When he emigrated to Canada my dear mother would take some out in her suitcase, God bless her !

     

    HH

     

    My wee Maw also warned us about the dangers of a skeletal midfield, so she did !

  9. sixoclockatthechapel on

    Just caught a glimpse of our former chairman there on ITN -Wee Brian Quinn-never knew he was a Professor?!

  10. buick makane

     

    17:18 on

     

    12 February, 2014

     

    Palacio67 at 15.10

     

    Brilliant,not heard that in years,used to be the party piece of a member of a now defunct supporters bus I used to travel on,a great bus,you weren’t allowed on unless you had a kerry oot,happy days:-)

     

     

    —————————————————–

     

    Which bus did you travel on, always thought of that song as a Port/Greenock Tune….

     

     

     

    HH

  11. eddieinkirkmichael on

    BIG-CUP-WINNERS

     

     

    22:04 on

     

     

    The friday night quiz is something I look forward to, when I first lurked on CQN there was one and I never took part for fear of being embarassed, now I just hope I don’t finish last and enjoy the banter that usually goes with the quiz.

     

     

    Still can’t believe I forgot The Great Wall was English, from a question about goalkeepers a few weeks ago, even the wife got that one lol

  12. eddieinkirkmichael TG has pondered long and hard about your question and I can exclusively reveal that the winner was Macleod&Macleod Church Street Stornoway. “Better than a week in Lisbon” You can read the full story in his new book!!!!! Hail Hail Hebcelt

  13. It seems that the £ isn’t a British asset. It is English/Welsh/Irish.

     

     

    I think I’ll now be voting YES.

     

     

    Scotland should go for the USD.

  14. BCW

     

     

    Cheers mate. Will try and participate. Must admit the goings on over the last few years are still eating away at me and has def effected my attitude towards Scottish Football. Cant see it getting any better!

  15. eddieinkirkmichael on

    bigshuggy

     

     

    22:15

     

     

    I have a wee soft spot for that particular place as my wife is a Mackay from Upper bayble(hope I spelt that right as she lurks on here)

  16. the exiled tim

     

     

    22:33 on 12 February, 2014

     

    BCW

     

     

    “Is the quiz the morra and not friday ?”

     

     

    Thursday is the new Friday

  17. sixoclockatthechapel on

    Jude-

     

     

    He was on the main ITN News for a minute-financial piece re main UK parties saying Scotland could no longer use the £ STG as its currency as an Independent country.

  18. Celticrollercoaster supports the Dambhoys on

    TG-what was your best European goal scored? Milan, Lisbon or another?

     

     

    HH

     

     

    CRC

  19. Celticrollercoaster supports the Dambhoys on

    Doc is Neil Lennon

     

     

    22:18 on

     

     

    12 February, 2014

     

     

    Can you rub VP’s team off the list? :-)

     

     

    HH

     

     

    CRC

  20. Cowiebhoy supporting the Celtic to 3 in a row on

    anyone any idea what time CQteN will finish at ?

     

     

    and No Black pudin for me

     

     

    Hail Hail

  21. leftclicktic We are all Neil Lennon on

    Good night all

     

    Mr Gemmell again thank you.

     

    Your exploits in May 1967 was the major reason thems died

     

    Sleep well all