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Celtic to take Lions of '67 to Lisbon for CL final

Celtic have invited the European Cup-winning team of 1967 to Lisbon for this year's UEFA Champions League final in the Portuguese capital.

Hoops chief Peter Lawwell has confirmed that the 'Lions of Lisbon' squad that won the '67 cup over Inter Milan at the Estadio Nacional have been invited to attend this year's final at Benfica's Estadio da Luz on May 24.

Additionally, the players of '67 will visit the scene of their triumph almost 50 years - the Estadio Nacional - and will be guests of honour at a dinner at the Palacio Hotel in Estoril, where they stayed in 1967.

"We felt it would be a fitting honour to invite the Lions to Lisbon for such an occasion, the first time the final has been held in the city since Celtic lifted the European Cup in 1967," said Lawwell.

"The success of that team is something which we should never forget and cannot be underestimated. It is also an achievement which our supporters will always be proud of and something we should always celebrate.

"These are great men who achieved great things for our club and we felt it would be a real and meaningful tribute to make this invitation to the Lions, the families of those players who sadly are no longer with us and, of course, the families of the great Jock Stein and Sean Fallon.

"The Lions are men of real humility and are always humble about their great success. They played the game in a very different footballing era to today."

The captain of the '67 Lions and now a Celtic ambassador, Billy McNeill, felt it was a superb gesture by the current day Hoops board.

"This is a magnificent gesture by the club and one which is greatly appreciated by all the boys and the families of everyone connected to the team," he said.

"It will be a fantastic opportunity for us all to re-live what we achieved on that great day in Lisbon in 1967."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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