Celtic close excellent weekend with fantastic show

(FILES) Photo taken 21 May 2004 shows Ce
(FILES) Photo taken 21 May 2004 shows Ce / CHRISTOPHE SIMON/GettyImages

Well that was some weekend for Celtic, wasn’t it! Wins on the pitch for both the men's and women’s teams. Both sides are now edging even closer to their respective league titles. That all made for a very happy mood at the club's Player of the Year Awards on Sunday night and it proved to be an evening to remember.

This was no ordinary Player of the Year awards night. This was Celtic's 20th such ceremony. That meant an arena-based event on stage in front of around 12,000 celebrating fans, myself included.

And boy did we all celebrate and enjoy some precious moments. The evening was packed with plenty of music, fun and Celtic legends and players in abundance. Plus some incredibly emotional moments. 

Georgios Samaras and Odsonne Edouard were among the former players welcomed onstage. They received an amazing reception from the fans which set the tone for the night. The Frenchman's appearance also led to a lot of social media gossip about a possible return to Glasgow, with his Crystal Palace future in doubt.

Celtic close excellent weekend with fantastic show

Of course, there were plenty of awards handed out. Or rather earned. Full details are on the Celtic website.

Matt O’Riley, Kyogo and Amy Gallagher were multiple category winners. The Denmark international collected three awards, one of which, for Player’s Player of the Year sparked an emotional moment for close runner-up Joe Hart. The goalkeeper was invited on stage to receive long and enthusiastic acclaim from the fans and was clearly deeply moved by the reception. 

Brendan Rodgers had a moment in the limelight too. Let’s not forget there were those who weren’t keen on his return. A point they kept making during what was at times a difficult season. He received a superb welcome from the fans and if there was a coldness from some previously, it wasn’t visible now.

The big moment we were all waiting for came as Henrik Larsson arrived on stage for his Outstanding Contribution award. It was a 'raise the roof' and 'bring the house down' moment all in one. The King of Kings seemed emotional with the reception he received from the fans.

Both the men’s and women’s squads and the managers had been applauded onto the stage at the start of the night. They returned for a spectacular “You’ll Never Walk Alone”, bringing the magic of Celtic Park into the arena. A few more traditional songs from the ground played the evening to an excellent close. Now that’s how you do an awards ceremony!