A star of the great Belfast Celtic at the time of their demise, Johnny Campbell managed something with his club that eluded him with his country - a victory over Scotland...
Name: John P. Campbell
Born: 28 June 1923, Londonderry
Died: January 1968
Representative Honours: Northern Ireland: 2 Full Caps (1950); Irish League: 1 Cap (1948).
Club Honours: (with Belfast Celtic) Irish League Champion 1947/48; Irish Cup Winner 1946/47.
Teams......... --Seasons-- Signed League FA Cup
Belfast Celtic ............. 1945
Fulham........ 49/50-52/53 c/s-49 .62/ 4 ..6/ 2
Belfast Celtic 1949.........guest (8 goals) (US International Series)
Derry-born Johnny Campbell grew up playing Gaelic football at school. He was also an accomplished sprinter, and an Ulster champion over 100 and 200 metres. No doubt that turn of pace made him devastating when he took to soccer with Foyle Harps. An accomplished winger, though he could also lead the line, he was signed-up by Derry City, and from there he moved to Belfast Celtic in 1945. At Paradise Campbell won Irish League and Cup winner’s medals, and represented the Irish League. Perhaps his most famous contribution to the club’s history was the opening goal in a 2-0 win over Scotland during Celtic’s swansong tour of America.
By the time of the US Tour, Campbell had already departed Belfast Celtic for Fulham. He played almost seventy times while at Craven Cottage before his career was ended by injury early in the 1952/53 season. During his time in London he earned two caps, and indeed his wing-play earned praise from the maestro himself, Stanley Matthews.
With his playing days over, Campbell returned to Belfast to work as a scout for Fulham. He died from bowel cancer at the tragically young age of 44. Inadvertantly, Campbell's death brought a brief return of football to 'Paradise', a Belfast Celtic Select playing a benefit match which raised £800 for his family.
Northern Ireland Cap Details:
07-10-1950 England. (h) L 1-4 BC
01-11-1950 Scotland (a) L 1-6 BC
Summary: 2/0. Won 0, Drew 0, Lost 2.
Headshot courtesy of Red Warrior from the ILSF.