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The Blood Sacrifice

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The Blood Sacrifice' is the fourth part of Ian McCallum's superb - possibly unique in terms of a sporting institution- series evoking an important milestone in the gradual emergence of a community ( with particular focus on Glasgow) from the margins of Scottish life. Its role in the First World War , both on the fighting and home fronts, fostered and underlined its integration into that wider society, helped in no small measure by the inspiration that the Catholic Irish drew from the sustained excellence of its most famous and potent symbol - its pride and joy, namely Celtic Football Club , arguably Britain's finest .


The author vividly depicts the club's supporting role in the military conflict (not only material, the death of the highly popular half - back Peter Johnstone in combat was a savage blow) and the widespread celebration of the VC awarded to Springburn's Robert Downie , a fanatical Celtic supporter, whilst chronicling daily life in the ' Second City' during what came to be known as the Great War. The ' Glesga night oot' pages, for example , vividly depicts, in highly entertaining fashion, the light relief available in those grim, anxious times. 


All things considered, a marvellous contribution - with more to come - to the rich tapestry of Celtic' s history.


Pat Woods (Celtic historian)

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