Brian McClair

Read all the news about Celtic hero Brian McClair. Brian McClair was born in Airdrie, Scotland on 8 December 1963 (age 54). Follow @BrianMcClair13 on Twitter.

In May 1983, Billy McNeill signed McClair for Celtic, with the fee being £100,000. McClair was effectively signed as a replacement for the recently departed Charlie Nicholas. However, McClair would never actually play for McNeill, as the Celtic manager resigned in June 1983 and was replaced by Davie Hay.

McClair scored in a 2–0 win on his debut against Partick Thistle at Firhill in the Glasgow Cup on 9 August 1983. By the end of an impressive first season at Celtic, McClair had scored 32 goals and established himself as a first team regular. A four-goal haul against Dundee in a 6–2 win during September, an outstanding solo goal in a 5–0 win over Sporting Lisbon in the UEFA Cup, and a goal in the 2–3 defeat against Rangers in the League Cup Final in March 1984 highlighted McClair’s goalscoring ability.

The following season saw the arrival of Mo Johnston from Watford and, despite their contrasting personalities, McClair and Johnston would quickly form a deadly goalscoring partnership for Celtic. McClair continued to score regularly for Celtic, and at the end of the season won his first winner’s medal, coming on as a substitute in Celtic’s 2–1 win over Dundee United in the 1985 Scottish Cup Final.

Despite competition from Alan McInally and Mark McGhee, McClair and Johnston remained the regular pairing playing up front for Celtic. Their goals helped Celtic to a dramatic league championship win in 1985–86; a memorable 5–0 win over St Mirren at Love Street on the last day of the season with McClair and Johnston both scoring twice as title-rivals Hearts capitulated to a 2–0 defeat at Dundee.

Season 1986–87 would be McClair’s last at Celtic. Despite a bright start to the season from Celtic, the team’s form began to fade during the winter months and the club would go on to squander a nine-point lead in the league, which was eventually won by Rangers. Another league cup final defeat against Rangers (despite an outstanding goal by McClair) and a fourth-round defeat at Hearts in the Scottish Cup saw Celtic finish the season without any silverware. Despite Celtic’s lack of achievement, McClair was an outstanding success that year. He scored 41 goals in total, finishing top scorer in the league with 35 goals and won both the Scottish Football Writers’ Association Player of the Year and the Scottish Players’ Player of the Year awards.

In four seasons with at Celtic, McClair made 204 appearances in all competitions and scored 126 goals. He won the Scottish Cup 1985 and the Scottish Premier Division in 1986.

External links

Brian McClair in the news

Read all the latest Celtic FC news mentioning Brian McClair.

The Celtic Star · Sep 22

Jim Craig – Celtic’s hat-trick heroes

Dixie Deans from the 1970s ..Jimmy Walsh, the 1950s ..Willie Buchan, 1930s ..Chris Sutton, the noughties Patsy Gallagher, the 1910s and 1920s .Brian McClair, the 1980s.

The Celtic Star · Sep 22
Evening Times · Jul 20

Davie Hay: Odsonne Edouard and Moussa Dembele have the makings of a fearsome partnership

The best strikeforce I worked with in my time as Celtic manager would have been Maurice Johnston and Brian McClair.

Evening Times · Jul 20
The Celtic Star · Aug 24

Jim Craig – Brian McClair’s Celtic debut

When Brian McClair ran out for his Celtic debut on this day in 1983 – for a league cup tie at Glebe Park, the ground of Brechin City – only 3,000 people were in the stadium to see Celtic win 1-0...

The Celtic Star · Aug 24

Jim Craig – Paul Elliott joined Celtic on this day in 1989

Paul Marcellus Elliott first played at Celtic Park on 2 August 1986, while wearing the colours of Aston Villa in a friendly against the Hoops, when Brian McClair scored the only goal of the game...

90min.com · Jun 28

SPFL to the EPL: 6 Players Who Made A Successful Move From Scotland to England

The Scottish Premier League has proved to be a breeding ground for talent over the years; talent that has, on occasion, made its way down south with great success.

90min.com · Jun 28
The Celtic Star · Jun 20

Jim Craig: Brian McClair’s 120 goals, 199-match Celtic career

After one season with Aston Villa, where he never made the first team, Brian McClair returned to Scotland, signing for Motherwell in 1981.

The Celtic Star · Jun 20
Inside Futbol · Apr 18

This Is What I Like About Leigh Griffiths – Former Celtic Forward

Brian McClair has praised Leigh Griffiths attitude, with the striker often left out of the Celtic starting eleven...

Inside Futbol · Apr 18
The Celtic Star · Mar 25

Brian McClair talks Celtic

BRIAN McCLAIR was described by Sir Alex Ferguson as his best ever buy for Manchester United...

The Celtic Star · Mar 25
The Scotsman · Mar 12

Rumour Mill: Ex-SFA man slams O** F*** officials | Celtic man ‘fits Arsenal’ | McLeish to name Scotland squad

Scottish football gossip: Brian McClair launches attack on officials from O** F*** clash; Paul Merson tips Celtic man to be a great fit at Arsenal and Alex McLeish set to name his Scotland squad...

The Scotsman · Mar 12
The Telegraph · Feb 22, 2016

Celtic 3 Inverness CT 0: Leigh Griffiths double sees striker close in on Henrik Larsson and Brian McClair records

Celtic 3 Inverness CT 0: Leigh Griffiths needs to score a goal per game in club’s remaining fixtures to reach new goalscoring landmark...

The Telegraph · Feb 22, 2016
Daily Record · Nov 20, 2016

Malky Mackay leading the race to become the new SFA performance director

FORMER Cardiff City boss heads a six-man shortlist to fill the post vacated by Brian McClair that also includes ex-Celtic No2 John Collins...

Daily Record · Nov 20, 2016
Celtic Forever · Feb 22, 2016

Leigh Griffiths aims to surpass Larsson and McClair scoring record

35 league goals. That’s the record held by both Brian McClair and Henrik Larsson at Celtic...

Celtic Forever · Feb 22, 2016
Scotzine · May 28

Mcclair Welcomes Cadden, Morgan

FORMER Scotland international Brian McClair has welcomed the introduction of youngsters in Alex McLeish’s Scotland squad.

Scotzine · May 28

Sportsound Podcast : 02 Apr 18

Kenny Macintyre, James McFadden, Michael Stewart & Darryl Broadfoot debate Davies challenge on Brown, if Derek McInnes would be interested in West Brom & Brian McClair interview...

BBC Sportsound · Mar 20

Sportsound Podcast: 20 Mar 18

We’re looking forward to Friday’s friendly with Costa Rica and we hear from former Scotland star Brian McClair...

BBC Sportsound · Mar 20
Celtic Underground · Nov 22, 2015

His greatest game – Brian McClair – 1984 Hearts 1-5 Celtic

On the 14th of November 1984 Scotland achieved one of their greatest ever results when they beat Spain by a scoreline of 3-1 at...

Celtic Underground · Nov 22, 2015
Daily Record · Feb 27, 2015

Brian McClair named as new SFA Performance Director: Former Celtic and Manchester United brought in to replace Mark Wotte

THE 51-year-old former director of United’s youth academy will take a lead role in helping develop the Scottish stars of tomorrow...

Daily Record · Feb 27, 2015
Celtic Underground · Mar 20, 2015

The Bhoy in the Picture – Brian McClair

In January 1983 Brian McClair was a Motherwell player when he exploded on to the Scottish football scene...

Celtic Underground · Mar 20, 2015
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