11 years on: Scott McDonald reflects on Celtic's trip down under

It’s been 11 years since we welcomed Scottish giants and then-runners up Celtic FC to Suncorp Stadium in front of a vocal 31,000-plus crowd at Suncorp Stadium.

The match, played for the Translink Cup, was Celtic’s first of pre-season ahead of the 2009/10 Scottish Premiership season with a familiar face donning the captain’s armband for the day.

11 years on, now Brisbane Roar striker Scott McDonald shares his memories of the occasion from the perspective of the visitors on that day.

“I remember it well. I came straight from my honeymoon to Brisbane, we had a new manager in Tony Mowbray – it was the first time I’d met him landing in Brisbane,” McDonald said.

“I had one training session before the game and it was difficult for boys who had never travelled that far before.

“It was funny because at that point Brisbane Roar was full of former Rangers players which gave the game a little edge, especially for the Celtic supporters in the crowd.

McDonald


“It was a really good occasion. I was made captain for the day which was a special chance to play in front of people who mean a lot to you, who had probably not seen you play in a Celtic kit before.

The fixture ended 3-0 in favour of the buoys on that day, and the fixture remains clear in the memories of McDonald in what was a relatively unique opportunity at the time for him to play football in Brisbane.

“I always loved coming to Queensland – I used to come so much as a child to the Gold Coast. My wife travelled with me and we’ve come back and done that trip to the Gold Coast again more recently," McDonald continued.

“It was great. I always loved playing at Suncorp Stadium – it’s probably by favourite stadium to play in in Australia. I’ve been lucky to play for both Celtic and the Socceroos in front of packed crowds.

“It was a great occasion, great atmosphere. It wasn’t the greatest lead-in since I had just come straight from my honeymoon but it was great for the boys to see how well they [Celtic] are supported here – everywhere we went, we always had a huge following.”