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John Hughes’ son: He was a Celtic man until his last breath

Celtic great John ‘Yogi’ Hughes (Jane barlow/PA)
Celtic great John ‘Yogi’ Hughes (Jane barlow/PA)

One of John ‘Yogi’ Hughes’ last acts was to celebrate a Celtic goal, his son has revealed.

Hoops great Hughes raised a fist to herald an early goal by fellow Coatbridge native Stephen Welsh in Celtic’s televised 2-0 win over Aberdeen on Sunday, after taking in the pre-match rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone.

The 79-year-old died in hospital on Monday following a short illness.

His son, John, one of four children to Hughes and wife Theresa, wrote on Twitter: “He rallied one last time on Sunday to sing us ‘Grace’ as best he could.

“His last conscious acts were hanging on for YNWA & giving us a wee fist pump celebration for Stephen’s goal.

“There is undeniable magic about this club we all love. A Celtic man until his last breath.”

Hughes scored 189 goals in 416 games for Celtic from 1959 to 1971 and won a European Cup winners’ medal in 1967, although he did not play in the final.

He played in the 1970 European Cup final defeat by Feyenoord after netting in the last four against Leeds, before joining Crystal Palace in 1971.

Palace paid tribute to their former player, writing: “We are saddened to learn that former player John ‘Yogi’ Hughes has passed away, and our thoughts are with his friends and family.

“Hughes is most fondly remembered among supporters for scoring one of the club’s greatest goals, against Sheffield United in a 5-1 win.

“After entertaining fans along the left in 23 Palace matches, Hughes’ south London spell was cut short by a knee injury, and he retired after a short stint with Sunderland.”

Celtic paid tribute when the news broke late on Monday night.

“Everyone at Celtic Football Club is extremely sad to hear of the passing of Lisbon Lion, John ‘Yogi’ Hughes, who has died at the age of 79, and the thoughts and prayers of everyone at the club are with John’s family and friends at this extremely sad time,” they said.