Celtic are set to head out to a pre-season camp in Austria at the beginning of July when they begin to ramp up their efforts to get fit and ready for the new season.
For the bhoys who weren’t on international duty during the summer, they’ll be due back at Lennoxtown at the end of June while the others will follow shortly after.
Celtic have six friendlies scheduled for pre-season, but two of the games the Hoops has been advertising have not yet had opponents confirmed.
Celtic TV will be showing all friendlies this summer, but they haven’t confirmed the opposition for two of those matches.
SLFC has been tasked with organising Celtic’s pre-season and making sure everything is on point when the bhoys head to Austria.
Their website is claiming one of the friendlies yet to be announced by the club will be against Rapid Vienna at the Allianz arena, Vienna.
Hoops fans of a certain age will know all about Rapid and the farce of a game.
The Celtic Wiki explain it best:
It’s a long story! Celtic, after a 3-1 first-leg defeat in Austria, beat Rapid Vienna 3-0 at Parkhead to seemingly progress to the third round of the European Cup Winners Cup. We had totally outplayed them at Parkhead, so much so that long before the final whistle Rapid had lost the plot and had resorted to thuggery. Tommy Burns was punched and kicked and they had a player sent-off.
We were awarded a penalty late in the game but because of the protests of the Rapid players there was a long stoppage. The Rapid players were all surrounding the ref near the Jungle side touchline when someone in the crowd threw a bottle onto the field. It didn’t hit anyone but a Vienna player fell to the ground feigning injury, pretending he had been struck on the head. He was taken off with his head wrapped in bandages and Rapid played out the last part of match with nine men.
Rapid lodged a complaint with UEFA about the bottle incident but with TV evidence clearly showing the bottle hit no one their story was dismissed. UEFA hit both clubs with a fine and that was that, or so we thought.
Rapid then went back to UEFA with a new story. This time they said it was a small unidentified object which hit the player. Again they had no evidence. But this time they did a bit of lobbying and god knows what else and the case went before an extraordinary meeting of some UEFA committee. This time, despite the total lack of evidence and the fact Rapid had changed their story several times, the decision went the Austrian’s way. Celtic were ordered to replay the second-leg at a venue 150 miles from Glasgow. The whole thing stunk.
It was a bizarre episode in the clubs history. The bhoys would end up going out of Europe at Old Trafford – losing 1-0 on the night in another farcical game.
The game is still talked about by older Celtic fans to this day and hearing we’ll be playing the club in a friendly will bring back some of these memories.
Celtic and Rapid have both moved on from those days, but it could add a bit of spice to proceedings for fans who make the trip.
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