Sean Fallon was known as The Iron Man, a hard left back at a time when pretty much all footballers were hard. I met him and his wife Myra at their home a few months ago to prepare an interview in advance of his autobiography, which is due for release soon, the hard-man reputation could not have been further from the character of the person.
He was the most generous spirited man I have been in the company of for years. Myra is a force of nature, unquestionably the wind in his sails. You have never met a happier couple.
The stories he told about how Celtic were transformed from a sporting irrelevance into one of the most powerful and feared clubs in Europe were incredible. His story was one of huge and dramatic achievement. You and I are the beneficiaries.
The players he signed are legendary. Kenny Dalglish, who was in tears in Sean’s home the night he agreed to go to Liverpool, Danny McGrain, a person Sean could not speak highly enough about, and countless more. He was a committed Celtic man but took no pleasure in the death of Rangers, such was his generosity of spirit.
Sean described Jock, himself and Sir Robert Kelly as a three man team who had the vision to drive Celtic forward. He believed that when Sir Robert died in 1971 the club’s loss was significant. Nothing was the same again.
His own parting from Celtic, in 1975, was far from satisfactory, but if he told me once, he told me 10 times, “I don’t want a single word said against Celtic”. The club that you and I recognise is the creation of Jock, Sean and Sir Robert. They transformed an amateurish football club into a legendary movement. He, more than anyone I ever met, never wanted a figurative goal scored against this legend.
Today we have lost one of the architects of all we hold dear, a man who achieved the Miracle of Lisbon. His insights reach back into the depths of our character. His decision to author an autobiography is a gift to you and me. I’ll share many of his anecdotes between now and when it’s published.
My sincere condolences to Myra, son Sean and all the family. We have lost the man who was our greatest living legend but they have lost a great husband, father and grandfather. A remarkable life has come to an end.