Last updated : 09 January 2006 By editor

From the Telegraph:

‘The young Roy Keane would have imagined his Celtic debut many times, and in many ways, but never like this, as a ghost in someone else's romance. Until yesterday, the finest football drama Clyde's home town of Cumbernauld had produced was Gregory's Girl, which was filmed here. This had the more extraordinary ending.

Celtic supporters had filled two of the three sides of this modest ground, still unfinished more than a decade after its opening, and on the empty bank behind one goal a string of youngsters stood with an Irish tricolour which had Keane's face staring grimly out from its centre. To those for whom Keane's arrival at Parkhead seemed like a prophesy fulfilled, it would have been like waiting years to see Muhammad Ali box, only to watch him knocked cold by a fairground fighter.

When Keane chose Celtic ahead of Real Madrid and a smattering of Premiership sides, he would have accepted that standards at a lot of Scottish clubs would have reminded him of his time at Cobh Ramblers. He could not have anticipated that the one he had signed for would be among them.

Strachan was scathing. "In any game of football, if you don't create chances, have any shots or seem unable to pass the ball back to your keeper, then your tactics aren't working. It was not my idea of cup football." He stopped short of admitting to humiliation. "I'm disappointed and saddened but not humiliated."

At Manchester United, Keane seldom enjoyed visits to the lower reaches of English football and never suffered a debacle quite like this. Upsets like these are rarer in Scotland than in England. Clyde are fourth in the division below Celtic, which to English eyes might suggest United being beaten by Watford. But Watford did not draw 901 people to their last league fixture and they are not called 'The Bully Wee' by their fans. This was a footballing earthquake.

Graham Roberts, who had a playing staff of two when he succeeded Ronald McDonald (no, really) as Clyde manager was more than a little pleased with himself:

"This is the greatest day of my managerial career, nothing will ever top this."