BBWB 6: The Budapest Cup

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THE BALLAD OF BLACK WATCH BRODICK

CANTO 6

The Budapest Cup

21-5-1914

Celtic FC 1 – Burnley FC 1
Budapest

Ulloi Uti Stadion (Ferencvaros)
Attendance 10.000

Burnley: Dawson, Bamford, Taylor, Halley, Boyle, Watson, Nesbitt, Lindley, Freeman, Hodgson Grice.

Celtic: Shaw, McGregor, Dodds, Youngs, Johnstone, McMaster, McAtee, Gallagher, McColl, McMenemy, Browning.


O! to be a buzzy Burnley boy
Leaving the Crystal Palace
With loads of Scousers to annoy
As cocky as a phallus

For down the Royal Capital
Burnley’s beat Liverpool
A victory to catapult
Their statuses to cool

Stratospheric Olympians
Invited to renew
Tests of the best Hungarians
Austrians, Germans too

As have that famous football club
Supremely catalytic
Team colours daubing home & club
Ardent for Glasow Celtic

Platoon of hoop-green Bhoys & men
Ninth national title win
Up raise the cup, the league makes ten
The Double’s soak’d in gin

So off they went by train & port
To Europe’s heaving heart
The best of British to promote
With skill, with style, with art

As Burnley won the Berlin game
Celtic play’d Ferencvaros
& won two-one, the scoreline same
For Clarets, who now cross

The border into Hungary
Where they quickly caught the catch
They were not to play a friendly
Against Celtic, but a match!

Whose victors would be duly crown’d
Champions of the planet
A tall, gem-studded cup was found
& proper refs to man it

The day was hot, the Danube spun
A gust across the stands
Of Ulloi Uti Stadion
As players all shake hands

The anthem plays, the whistle blows
Firm tackles flew in thickly
McGregor gets a bloody nose
The needle sharpens prickly

The Celtic get the upperhand
The wind & sun behind ‘em
Thro’ Claret lines the forwards fann’d
Found passes meant to find ‘em

A penalty! Celtic shoot sweet,
Lancastrians retreated
Into a huddle, “Play to feet!”
Sweat urgently secreted

Saw battle surge on bare a blade
The pitch was baked unsodden
Like Stirling Bridge the Scot’s blockade
Like Flodden & Culloden

The Thistle & the Thorny Rose
Make war about a ball
When Saxon stridence for the cause
Bounc’d off a schiltron wall

The ball did swing from end to end
The crowd did cheer & yell
As reckless tackles fly, upend
Men crying as they fell

The Bhoys hung on until half-time
The crowd enthusiastic
The whistle blows, to cheers achime
The match renews fantastic

A handsome soldier in the crowd
Felt grim foreshadowings
Saw how each Briton fought full proud,
‘If ever,’ he thought, ‘fate brings

Our empires into open war
Pandora’s Box of pities
For tigers pace their island shore
& lions patrol their cities…’

A penalty, how Tommy Boyle
So slickly equalises
The temp’rature begins to boil
The heat of battle rises

The Burnley lads were now on top
All out attack, no cautions
Their play restrain’d, a train sweatshop
Will’d on with loud exhortions

As Trojans held the Scaean gate
As Spartans guard the Hot Springs
Attacks push’d back without abate
Crosses stream in from both wings

Both sides began to argue more
While cool heads on the sidelines
Shouted “its football lads, not war!”
Glory ignores all guidelines

& from rough tackle resolute
Celtic explode in numbers
McMaster pass’d a ball to shoot
By tired defenders’ slumbers

But Jerry Dawson palms away
That shot by McAtee
Burt Freeman winces as his day
Saved from calamity

A whistle blows, the ninety done
“Another thirty!” Burnley cries
But Scots & European sun
Cattle rattl’d by gadfly

Nobody won, nobody lost,
Thro’ handshakes grappl’d firmly,
The replay call’d, the pengő toss’d,
The next one’s set for Burnley…

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