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HENRIK!

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CELTIC legend Henrik Larsson joined the club 18 years ago this weekend.

The £650,000 move from Feyenoord wasn’t seen as sensational news while new boss Wim Jansen paid more for the likes of Darren Jackson (£1.5million, Hibs, Marc Rieper, (£1.8million, West Ham) and Craig Burley (£2.5million, Chelsea).

Larsson, in fact, cost only £150,000 more than left-back Stephane Mahe from French outfit Rennes.

To be precise, it was July 25 1997 when the Swede arrived and former team-mate Tommy Boyd says: “Henrik hates it when anyone mentions his debut for the club.”

Eight days later after signing, Larsson came on as a second-half substitute against Hibs at Easter Road and set up the winning goal for the Edinburgh side’s midfielder Chic Charnley with a wayward pass out of defence.

He also scored an own goal on his European debut for the Hoops, a remarkable 6-3 UEFA Cup win over the Austrians of Tirol Innsbruck in Glasgow later that month.

However, the Swede went on to score 174 league goals and 242 in total to become a club icon and was the only non-Scot named in Celtic’s greatest ever team in 2002.

After four league titles, three Scottish Cups, two League Cups and a UEFA Cup runners-up medal, he joined Barcelona, where he won two La Liga titles and the Champions League.

Now managing Helsingborgs, Larsson showed last month he still had it when, at the age of 43, he subbed himself on in a practice game against Malmo – and duly scored.

 
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