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Robert 'Roy' Milne.


Defender Roy Milne was signed in November 1940 from Polkemmet Juniors, manager Jimmy McStay's first signing.

He would make his debut on the 30th of that month in a 2-0 Regional League victory at home to Morton. A composed and gifted left-back Roy's career was interrupted by his service in the war and after his spell in the RAF he returned an arguably inferior player but one who always gave his all to the Celtic cause.

Roy's two trophy's won in his time at Celtic were, The Glasgow Cup in 1948 which was Celtic's first post war trophy, and the 1950 Glasgow Charity Cup.

By quirk of fate, when Celtic embarked on their successful quest for the 1951 Scottish Cup - beating a strong Motherwell team 1-0 by courtesy of a John McPhail goal - Roy was on the injured list.

Roy was very unfortunate that his spell with the club was throughout what was probably the poorest time for the club. We were very poorly managed both at team and board level, at one point even close to relegation. Who knows how he may have fared if he was with a more able Celtic side. Despite this, he described the 12 years at Celtic as: "the happiest a man could have".

Roy played 166 games for the Bhoys before being released in May 1952 and moving to the United States (to first New York then California), where Roy was influential in the formation of the early American Soccer leagues.
(Bio from celtiwiki)

Roy '51



Honours with Celtic

Glasgow cup
 1948   Celtic 3-1 Third Lanark
 First trophy won by club since end of WW2

Glasgow Charity cup
 1950   Celtic 3-2 Rangers
 Hollywood star Danny Kaye attended final

Other Honours

American Soccer League
1954   New York Americans

America National Open Cup
1954   New York Americans
1959   McIlvaine Canvasbacks (LA)


Roy Milne Obituary

Roy Milne April 27 1921 -- June 29 1998

Roy Milne passed away aged 77, was signed by Celtic in 1940.

It was Roy's dream come true to join Celtic, as he had always admired their style of play. It was not long before the fans had nicknamed him ''Cowboy'' after the American star Roy Rodgers.

Born and educated in Falkirk, he started his footballing career with Dunipace Thistle. From there, after a particularly successful spell, he went to Polkemmet Juniors for three months, before joining Celtic, aged 19.

He played in the defensive position of left back, but he was renowned during his playing career for his ability to play with both feet. He played behind some famous half backs - Pat McAuley, Tommy Docherty, Willie Fernie, Bertie Peacock and John McPhail. He appreciated the great skills of Charlie Tully.

During the war, he was called up for service in the RAF and drafted to India, where he was one of a party of professional players chosen to play for the Combined Services team in India, Burma and Ceylon, such as Tommy Walker and John Harvey, of Hearts, and Denis Compton, to name but a few.

In 1950 he travelled with Celtic to play Lazio in Rome, and in 1951 he went on tour to Canada and America, where he was most impressed with the American way of life. In 1952 he was given a free transfer. The United States team came to play Scotland at Hampden Park and the manager invited Roy to lunch, setting up a move to New York.

While playing for the New York Americans he represented the United States in many internationals, including matches against England. Among the ''greats'' he played against at this time were Stanley Matthews and Tom Finney.

After three years he moved to California to play for The Danes and other teams. Twice he was on the winning side in the US National Cup - once in New York, and also in California, where he played with Billy Steel for several seasons.

Eventually Roy went into management, his last team being the United Scots, owned by a Beverly Hills restaurateur and sponsored by a number of movie personalities. They had the temerity to invite and play the great Real Madrid side of the 1960s.

During his years in America, Roy never forgot Celtic and he returned to Scotland as often as possible to see them play. He formed the California Celtic Supporters Club and started a boys team called the Wee Celtic for the under-privileged.

In 1973, he and his wife returned to Scotland and bought a hotel in Alva, which they ran until retirement in 1985. The Roy Milne Celtic Supporters Club is still going strong in the Hillfoots area of Clackmannanshire.

Roy is survived by his wife, a daughter and two grandchildren. Before his long illness he enjoyed many happy years of retirement in Majorca.

Sis Milne

Glasgow Herald 4th July 1998

Ian Fitzgerald's Tribute from The Alloa Advertiser

9th July 1998.

Former Celtic mid-fielder Roy Milne, who ran the Johnstone Arms Hotel in Alva on his retiral from football, has died in Stockport following a long illness, aged 77.

Roy, without doubt one of the best liked hoteliers in Central Region, was extremely popular by everyone he knew.

After his playing career finished at Parkhead, he moved into Alva to run the Johnstone Arms where he gave his full backing to the football club on a Sunday, and to the Celtic Supporters Club, to which he gave his name.

One of the players who was in the Johnstone team in the mid 1970's - George Law of Fishcross said this week, "Roy was one of nature's gentlemen, liked by everybody. He was always fully behind our football team and his words before a game were usually, 'Go out there and play silky soccer'."

George, who now runs a bookmakers in Alva added, "I remember playing in a charity game at Greenhead Park and Roy came out of his retirement to play. His class still showed. He was a quiet, unassuming man who never talked about his Celtic career because he was a modest chap."

Before taking charge of the Johnstone Arms, Roy had carved out a footballing career for himself both here and in America. He joined Celtic in 1940 from Polkemot Juniors to be manager Jimmy McStay's first signing.

Roy enjoyed the company at Parkhead of such well known names as Tommy Docherty, Willie Fernie, Charlie Tully, Bobby Colins, Sean Fallon and his great friend Alex Devanney, the Celtic and Alloa Goalkeeper..

By quirk of fate, when Celtic embarked on their successful quest for the 1951 Scottish Cup - beating a strong Motherwell team 1-0 by courtesy of a John McPhail goal - Roy was on the injured list.

It was in season 1949-50 that Roy won his only major medal with the club, in a 3-2 victory over Rangers in the Glasgow Charity Cup.

Released by Celtic in 1952, Roy and his wife Cis moved to California, where Roy was influential in the formation of the early American Soccer leagues.

When a young Jock Stein took Celtic to America in 1966, for a pre-season tour, it was Roy and Cis who hosted their welcome. Cis recalled at a later date, "My main problem was finding a Scottish Pipe Band in California, but I got one."

In 1973 Roy and his wife returned to Scotland, took over the tenancy of the Johnstone Arms and in the process made many lifelong friends.

Of an affable nature, Roy was extremely pleasant and approachable.

Perhaps it is appropriate in the week leading up to the Alva Games that we should especially think of Roy for his generosity and kindness. He and Cis were sponsors to the Games five-a-side competition and were constant attendees to present the prizes.



"An Alphabet of the Celts" biog

A studied calm defender, Roy Milne first got his chance for Celtic when Joe McCulloch was called in to play for the Scottish Army against the English (1-4) on St Andrew's Day 1940. Two weeks later "Milne can be claimed as a discovery". Roy played in the 2-3 Ne'erday win at Ibrox in 1941 and quickly developed into Celtic's lucky mascot. With 'Shammy Feet' in the team Celtic went nine matches undefeated until Hibs won 2-0 in Edinburgh on February 1st 1941. Roy served in India throughout the war (Celtic Sailors John Rae and Willie Corbett met him in Bombay) and after September 20th 1941 did not re-appear for Celtic until December 29th 1945 when his game was no longer so cool. He was moved to left half as of November 16th 1946 but inclined to play wing half like a full back, "too proneto biff the ball up-field and hoe for the best." On October 18th 1947 the famous alliteration of Miller, Mallan and Milne lined-up for the first time in the Celtic Rearguard. Roy was at right-back by ne'erday 1949 and after the 4-0 skinning at Ibrox was dropped for Alec Boden. His last game for Celtic was at Ibrox again on ne'erday two years later. He went down with the flu and Alex Rollo became Celtic's left-back as of January 6th. Roy went on the US tour of 1951 but no longer figured in Celtic's plans. He described his twelve years on the Parkhead books as "the happiest a man could have." His nickname is explained by a peculiar shuffling style he had. He lives in retirement in Spain. There is a Celtic Supporters' Club in Alva named for him.

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