And they gave us James McGrory and Paul McStay. They gave us Johnstone, Tully, Murdoch, Auld and Hay…

There is an argument that James Edward ‘Jimmy’ McGrory – aka the Human Torpedo, aka the Mermaid, aka the Golden Crust – can lay claim to being the greatest Celtic of them all.

He was incomparable – or at least his goalscoring exploits were.

April 26 is the 119th anniversary of the great striker’s birth and so, in our latest newsletter, we take a closer look at McGrory’s Celtic life in numbers…

1904: Jimmy McGrory is born in the Glasgow Irish enclave of the Garngad (now known as Royston).

1921: Legendary Celtic manager Willie Maley signs the forward from junior side St Roch’s.

1923: After the departure of Joe Cassidy, McGrory got his chance as Celtic’s main striker. After a three-game scoreless start, he turned down the offer of compassionate leave due to the death of his father to miss the fourth match. He opted to play against Falkirk, the same day as his dad’s funeral, and scored. He then bagged two successive hat-tricks against Third Lanark and Motherwell.

13: Unlucky for some but not for the Celtic man, who scored that amount in his 30-game loan spell with Clydebank – a period that also included a 2-1 win over the Hoops.

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2-1: Footballing folklore and fame beckoned on April 11th 1925 when, in the dying minutes of the Scottish Cup final at Hampden, a trademark bullet header gave Celtic a last-gasp 2-1 triumph over Dundee. It was the Hoops’ 11th victory in the tournament and took them past Queen’s Park then record haul of 10; a pivotal moment for the club.

100: Speaking of the great Queen’s Park sides, in P Luney's book 100 greats, the writer wrote commented that “Queen’s Park keeper Jack Harkness once broke three fingers trying to save a McGrory header”.

12: He was Celtic's top scorer for 12 straight seasons and – in 1926-27 and 1935-36 – he was European football's top marksman with 49 and 50 goals respectively.

3: McGrory reportedly took just three career penalties… and surprisingly missed two of them.

10,000: What would have been a world record transfer fee for McGrory's services that Celtic would have recouped in 1928 if he had opted to join Arsenal. He refused the switch and so incensed were the Hoops board that they allegedly paid him less than his team-mates for the rest of his career. McGrory reputedly said: "Well it was worth it just to pull on those green and white hoops”.

Celtic Way:

9: In the aftermath of the Arsenal saga, McGrory’s weekly wage was reportedly reduced from £9 to £8 with no warning or reason given after he refused to join the Gunners. He would reportedly later quip: "McGrory of Arsenal just never sounded as good as McGrory of Celtic.”

7: The total number of caps McGrory won for Scotland. In them, he scored six goals.

134,170: McGrory's late winner at Hampden on April 1st 1933 for Scotland against England was greeted with such a massive noise by the 134,170 crowd that legend has it the phrase ‘the Hampden Roar‘ was born after this goal.

55: McGrory also notched up a British top-flight record of 55 hat-tricks, 48 coming in League games and seven from Scottish Cup ties.

8: McGrory once hit eight goals in a Scottish league game against Dunfermline on January 14th 1928. It is still a British top-flight record. The boots he wore and the football used in that game are on permanent display at the Scottish Football Museum at Hampden Park.

62: Unsurprisingly, it is McGrory who holds the Celtic club record for most goals in a season when he bagged 62 from 46 games in the 1927–28 campaign.

550: With 550 career goals in 547 competitive first-team games at club and international level. McGrory is the all-time leading goalscorer in top-flight British football.

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7-1: After retiring as a player, McGrory takes charge of the Hoops and leads them to one of their most celebrated cup final wins ever. The 7-1 victory over Rangers remains a record scoreline in a major British cup final to this day. Both the game and McGrory are immortalised in the song Hampden in the Sun.

20: McGrory remained Celtic manager for 20 years between 1945 and 1965 before he was replaced by none other than Jock Stein.

1979: The year in which McGrory finally retired from Celtic – after a lengthy stint as PR officer following Stein’s hiring as manager.

1982: The year football lost a legend. McGrory died aged 78 in Glasgow.

2004: Forty-two years after his death, the Celtic great was inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame and the Scottish Sports Hall of Fame off the back of his outstanding goalscoring record and his trophy haul, which stood at three Scottish titles and five Scottish Cups as a player and one title, two Scottish Cups, two League Cups and the Coronation Cup as manager.

The Human Torpedo speared a hole in many a Scottish defence in his pomp and ceremony. His goalscoring record and exploits speaks for themselves. Simply put, the man from the Garngad played football the Glasgow Celtic way.