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Charlie Tully belonged to a time when players were underpaid and exploited, but he played football with a smile on his face. He was a man born to entertain and captivate, but a footballer above everything else. Charlie Tully was a legend, and there is other word to describe the boy from Belfast who came to Glasgow in 1948 and transformed the fortunes of Celtic on and off the pitch. After the wartime years the famous Glasgow club had slumped to the edge of relegation, but things were different on Charlie's arrival: the crowds rolled up to see this brilliant inside-forward, whose displays were recalling memories of bygone Celtic heroes, and his fame was assured when he took on Rangers' famed and feared Iron Curtain defence and tore it to shreds in an epic 3-1 victory at Celtic Park. And there are people who still swear that they saw Charlie Tully sit on the ball during that particular Old Firm match! The legend grew, as did the stories, but one thing could be said of Charlie Tully: very often his exploits exceeded the myths surrounding him. At Brockville in a Scottish Cup tie against Falkirk, with Celtic two goals down, he scored directly from a corner-kick, had the goal disallowed and scored again with the retaken corner! A few months earlier he had scored for Ireland against England at Windsor Park with a similar corner-kick from the left, and that was after the cheeky Tully had assured his immediate opponent, Alf Ramsey, that the Englishman would never be picked for his country again after he had finished with him! And in the twilight of a career that brought silverware and a League flag to Celtic Park, he was outstanding at Hampden Park when Celtic defeated Rangers in the 1957 League Cup Final by seven goals to one...Charlie Tully belonged to a time when players were underpaid and exploited, but he played football with a smile on his face. He was a man born to entertain and captivate but a footballer above everything else. To this day his name reverberates around Celtic Park in the songs of a Celtic support who have been brought up to recognise genius on a football pitch.
TOM CAMPBELL was born in Glasgow in 1934 and emigrated to Canada in 1956. A graduate of Carleton University in Ottawa with an honours degree in English Literature, he taught for four years in St Paul's, Alliston, and was head teacher throughout that period. After marriage he moved back to Ottawa as head of the English department at Sir Wilfrid Laurier High School and later transferred to a similar post at Glebe Collegiate, the capital's largest high school. He has also taught in Scotland at Peebles, Selkirk and Edinburgh, as well as in El Salvador. After retiring from teaching, he ran a guest house in Edinburgh with his partner, Pauline. A lifetime Celtic supporter - and long-time admirer of Charlie Tully - he has written extensively about the club.