10 Hardest Men Who Ever Played For Celtic

Roy Keane just squeezes onto the list.

Thomas Gravesen Celtic Barry Ferguson Rangers
Chris Clark/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Celtic Football Club boast a long and rich history. Some might even claim it's longer and richer than that of their cross-city rivals, Rangers (but not us - we think they're both equally great).

Whilst Scottish football these days has a reputation for being more about fight and determination than it is skill and technique, most of the cast of Parkhead's illustrious history have tended to be of the flamboyant, fleet-footed kind.

Players like Bobby Lennox, Kenny Dalglish and, more recently, Henrik Larsson, who were far more likely to be on the receiving end of a crunching tackle than they were to dish one out themselves. These are the ones who, through their elegance and panache, have helped build one of football's great trophy cabinets.

Equally, no team can be successful without a smattering of characters. And, in a title-chasing team, character isn't just a byword for the hot-headed midfield enforcer who sets out to beak his opponent's legs. You can be a great player and a great hard-man at once - a point Celtic's past has capably illustrated.

10. Mick McCarthy

Thomas Gravesen Celtic Barry Ferguson Rangers
Barrington Coombs/EMPICS Sport

Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy comes across as a cuddly character in his post-match interviews, but beneath those dulcet Yorkshire tones lies a fierce competitor, whose two seasons at Parkhead during the late 80s yielded one league title and a pair of Scottish Cups.

So, the former Ireland international is a winner - that was obvious from the way his brilliant Wolves side dazzled the Premier League in the late 2000s - but was he really hard?

In his playing days, Mick was an imposing centre-half with a long stride (and an even longer head). You wouldn't have wanted to get too tight with him when attacking a set piece - put it that way. And he proved during his confrontation with Roy Keane at the 2002 World Cup that he was prepared to stand his ground against anyone.