Celtic’s ‘golden era’ captain Billy McNeill dies aged 79

McNeill captained Celtic in the late 1960s and early 70s under the stewardship of Jock Stein

 Celtic have announced the death of former captain Billy McNeill at the age of 79. Photograph: PA

Celtic have announced the death of former captain Billy McNeill at the age of 79. Photograph: PA

 

Former Celtic captain Billy McNeill, who helped the Scottish giants win the European Cup in 1967, has died at the age of 79, the club said on Tuesday.

Fondly known as ‘Cesar’, McNeill started 790 competitive games for Celtic and helped the club win nine league titles in a row, as well as seven Scottish Cups and six League Cups.

He became the first British man to lift the European Cup in 1967, after he captained Celtic’s ‘Lisbon Lions’ to a 2-1 victory over Inter Milan in the final.

“It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our father Billy McNeill,” his family said in a statement released on Celtic’s website.

“He passed away late last night (Monday) surrounded by his family and loved ones. He suffered from dementia for a number of years and fought bravely to the end, showing the strength and fortitude he always has done throughout his life.”

McNeill captained Celtic in the late 1960s and early 70s under the stewardship of Jock Stein. He reached another European Cup final in 1970, as well as two semi-finals in 1972 and 1974.

He also managed Celtic in two spells, from 1978 to 1983 and 1987 to 1991.

“The Celtic family is mourning the death of Billy McNeill, the club’s greatest ever captain and one of the finest men to have played and managed the Hoops,” Celtic said in a statement.

“Celtic Football Club’s deepest condolences and heartfelt prayers go to Billy’s wife, Liz, their children, Susan, Paula, Libby, Carol and Martyn, grandchildren and all his many family and friends at this extremely sad time.”

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.