Our Chance To Bring A Piece of History Home To Paradise
Above, you can see one of the more iconic photographs of the Celtic support, crammed into the Estadio Olimpico in Seville less than an hour before the kick off of the UEFA Cup Final, 2003. You’d be forgiven for looking at that picture and thinking “what banner is he talking about?” but now I’d like to draw your attention to the top of the photograph, and the crest hanging above the Celtic end.
Before the match, both Celtic and Porto had a banner hanging above the end in which their supporters were housed showing their badge. Measuring about 20-25 feet by 20-25 feet, the banners background matched the style of the red and yellow tickets and programmes.
Having been in Seville with my father, I cannot believe I am about to say this (perhaps the rest of you will not be as excited as me, I don’t know), but now, as a fan base, we have the chance to buy that banner.
A few days ago, it was brought to my attention that a Celtic supporter in England (who originally got the banner in an auction not long after the final) was selling it on eBay. I contacted him and after a bit of discussion, he has since taken it off of eBay and given me the opportunity to test the waters with regards to our supporters potentially purchasing it.
The seller is looking to get around £500 for the banner (a similar figure to what he originally paid) and therefore I have a proposal for you all.
I would like us (if the desire within the support is there) to club together, purchase this piece of Celtic’s history, and bring it home to Celtic Park to hang it from one of the stadium’s tiers on match days.
I am not looking for donations at this moment in time. However, I am asking people to get in touch if they would be willing to pledge some money towards this project. This way we would be able to establish whether or not we could raise the required money when the time came. If not, then we will of course abandon the project and the seller will return to his search for a buyer.
I know £500 is a lot of money for a banner, but Celtic do not reach European finals every season and I think we’d all agree this banner deserves to be seen and enjoyed by Celtic supporters of all ages, instead of going to a private collector to sit in a box for years. The seller says he has contacted the club in the past regarding the banner, but they have not shown any interest in purchasing it.
Any pledges of funding would be massively appreciated, from £1 upwards. If we establish that enough money can be raised, we’ll start to accept donations and anyone who does make one will have their names associated with the banner in some way.
If this project progresses, I may ask for Celtic supporters from a particular part of England to get in touch, as I would like someone (or a few people) to go and see the banner to confirm it’s in good condition etc before handing over any of our money.
Once again, we’re not looking for donations at this time, only pledges.
If you would like to pledge any amount, you can do so on Twitter (by tweeting us @MaleysBhoys) or by leaving a comment at the bottom of the article below.
Ladies and gentlemen, I feel chances like this don’t come up very often; let’s bring it home, even if we do need to find, for example, five hundred separate fans willing to donate £1.