Another education from Brazilian football shirt archivist Stoppin Ho: this week Celtic’s 2001 home shirt.
Perhaps it was my catholic roots but i have always taken notice of Celtic. I’d prefer to blame it on Mark Viduka. He had one absolutely outstanding season at Parkhead and really brought the club and support to the forefront of all Australian football fans. I guess this is why every club is looking for that Chinese, or Japanese player to come along and become a footballing force….oh the marketing paradise that would follow! So lets travel north of the Border into Bonnie Scotland…
Under review is the Celtic home shirt from 2001. I have always had a soft spot for this shirt as it is the Henrik Larsson shirt, where he completely ripped the SPL a new one, winning multiple titles, club and football league awards and many a golden shoe award to go. Life hasn’t been the same since for Celtic fans… yes the league has been won many times since, but not with the swagger that it was in the early 2000’s. Back then many great players were happy to go play for the club, nowadays, the team is a shadow of the team that they had in those days.
I have called this shirt the “tough shirt”. I guess its because the material is near on invincible. it is quite a thick shirt which has no stretch ability, so if you weren’t sure whether it would fit, it was best get the next size up! The manufacturer was Umbro, (the best in my humble opinion) and the logo appears on the upper right side of the shirt, mirroring the famous club logo on the left side, each being well and truly sewn into the shirt no, peeling here!
The sponsor was NTL, which was a cable TV operator. the company exists nowadays as Virgin Media, as in 2006 it was merged with Telewest and in turn Virgin Media. At one stage the company dominated 90% of the market. The logo is a puffy logo, and is a nice feel to touch. At the bottom of the shirt is the holographic image of Celtic’s logo and the official replica embossment.
The shirt was purcased by my sister who travelled to Scotland and Ireland, and notably i made her go to the stadium to buy it as many retailers did not seem to offer the official SPL lettering.
As mentioned the fabric is a very non stretch quadruple layered material, so there was no give as per shirt pulls from opposition players. It is a heavier feel than lighter polyester and cotton shirts. Breathability occurs under the arms and sides as it is a more mesh and holed (holy?) look and feel.
Martin O’Neil, the current Republic of Ireland Manager was the boss, and some of the players in the squad were Russian GK Dimitri Kharine, Dianbobo Balde, Chris Sutton, John Hartson, Neil lennon (who would later Manage the club), Stilian Petrov, Shaun Moloney (currently at Villa), John Mjallby, and Liam Miller, who would later carve out a career in the A-league with Newcastle Jets. Henrik Larsson top scored with 29 league goals and 35 in all competitions. Celtic won the league this season for the second successive year.