Back in the late 60's through to the early 80's, Dundee and Celtic enjoyed a series of cup clashes, usually in the later stages of the competitions. I say "enjoyed" but it can be said that Celtic enjoyed these clashes a lot more than Dundee, unfortunately. It really didn't help that Celtic were managed by Jock Stein for most of this period, however.
The 1972-73 season saw these two meet on no less than 7 occasions- twice in the league, twice in the Scottish Cup and three times in the League Cup. Celtic edged Dundee in this mini rivalry by 3 wins to 2 with one draw. This season would see Dundee play 16 cup ties (20 if you include the Texaco and Forfarshire Cups) such was our success in the knock out tournaments. Although, it should be mentioned that Dundee managed a respectable 5th place finish in the league that year also. It's clear, to me anyway, that the Dundee side of that era deserved more than just a solitary League Cup win.
The game featured is the quarter final replay played at Hampden on 20th November 1972 in front of 36,483. Celtic won the game 4-1 with Jocky Scott netting Dundee's goal. An emphatic victory that contradicts the closeness of the 1st and 2nd leg matches of the quarter final: 1st leg- Dundee 1-0 Celtic (22,000); 2nd leg- Celtic 3-2 Dundee (After 90 mins and ET- 39,000). Unfortunately an away goals rule system didn't operate...
"Here Is Real Value for Money"- the title of the first feature exclaims.
"Value for money will be given tonight when Dundee, one of the most sophisticated and skilful sides in British football, meet the team that is something else in the Scottish game, Celtic"
The article goes on to quote Jock Stein's assessment of the last league encounter between the two sides:
"When your team plays as well as we played you can have little complaint. We played really well and lost a terrific game of football" [Dundee won 2-0]
The article ends up by highlighting just how difficult it will be for Dundee as Celtic have players such as Dalgleish, Hay, Macari, Johnstone et al to call upon, and, they rarely lose replays.
The Teams who are Chasing a Semi-Final Place Against Aberdeen
The middle page spread indicates the likely line ups:
Dundee's was predicted to be- Thomson Allan, Bobby Wilson, Doug Houston, Bobby Robinson, George Stewart, Bobby Ford, Jimmy Wilson, John Duncan, Gordon Wallace, Jocky Scott, Ian Scott. Sub: John Gray.
That was almost spot on apart from Alec Pringle playing in place of Bobby Ford.
A Close Look at the Players Who Make Scoring a Business
The respective marksmen of the two teams are given pen pics and we learn that John Duncan has already scored 11 in the League Cup competition alone (he would eventually net 40 goals that season). Jocky's pen pic reads:
"JOCKY SCOTT- Inside-left. 5ft, 9ins. 11st. 4lbs. Snapped up by Dundee eight years ago when Chelsea, unwisely, decided he didn't have what it takes. Though a moody type of player, there is none better when he is in the mood. Scored a spectacular "saver" against Celtic to force this replay."
League Cup Statistics and Scorers to Date
The inside back page charts the respective teams' progress in the competition. Both teams were free scoring up until this point- Dundee scoring 26 and Celtic 28. Dundee crushed East Stirling 8-2 in the sectional opener with Duncan netting 5. Dundee also turned around a 3-0 1st leg deficit against Dumbarton in the first knock-out round, winning the Dens 2nd leg 4-0.
The last page of the programme includes the obligatory piece of propaganda re the success of the tournament - nearly every programme of this era includes this article- but re-written in a different way. That said, the League Cup used to attract some staggering crowds. Click the image below to enlarge. look out for the patronising "little fellows" comments and the typo that suggests there will be an estimated 905,000 attending the 72-3 League Cup Final.