Celtic to install bronze statue of Billy McNeill

Billy McNeill with the Scottish Cup trophy after Celtic beat Dundee United 3-0 in the 1974 final. Picture: TSPL
Billy McNeill with the Scottish Cup trophy after Celtic beat Dundee United 3-0 in the 1974 final. Picture: TSPL
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CELTIC are to honour former captain and club legend Billy McNeill with a statue outside Parkhead.

McNeill was the first British player to lift the European Cup when Celtic’s ‘Lisbon Lions’ defeated Inter Milan to win the competition in 1967.

Billy McNeill and Billy Bremner lead out Celtic and Leeds for the European Cup match in 1970. Picture: TSPL

Billy McNeill and Billy Bremner lead out Celtic and Leeds for the European Cup match in 1970. Picture: TSPL

The 75-year-old defender, who turned out 29 times for Scotland, managed Celtic on two separate occasions.

Between his playing days and his management career, he led Celtic to 30 domestic trophies, including the famous nine league titles in a row during the 1960s and 1970s.

The statue, made out of bronze, will be sited near the monuments to club founder Brother Walfrid, former manager Jock Stein and McNeill’s former Hoops team-mate Jimmy ‘Jinky’ Johnstone’.

McNeill told celticfc.net: “Every time I look back at this special club’s history and what we achieved it fills me with joy, and now to be told I am to be honoured beside these Celtic greats, this really is a special day for me and all my family.”

And Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell described McNeill as an ‘inspiration’, adding: “Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s as a Celtic supporter, Billy McNeill was someone of huge stature in the game, not only on the field but also off it, as a statesman, a leader and a figurehead for our great club.

“His achievements for Celtic are simply outstanding and across a period of 27 years he gave so much to the club.”

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