Celtic On This Day: David Marshall becomes a Hoops hero

By John Reid

March 25, 2020

We continue our Celtic ‘On This Day’ feature with a look at one of Celtic’s most memorable individual performances of the 2000s, David Marshall’s display against Barcelona on the 25th of March 2004.

Celtic went into the second leg of the UEFA Cup last 16 tie against Barcelona holding a 1-0 lead, thanks to an Alan Thompson goal at Celtic Park.

However, it was always going to be a tough test in the second leg against a Barcelona side which included the likes of Ronaldinho, Xavi and Carlos Puyol, to name but three.

Baptism of fire for starlet

The game was also going to be a baptism of fire for goalkeeper David Marshall, who at the age of 19 was making only his second start for the Hoops.

David Marshall in action for Celtic (Photo by Chris Furlong/Getty Images)

Bayer Leverkusen 3-2 Celtic | LIVE Reaction

Thankfully for Celtic, Marshall was about to enjoy the game of his life. He pulled off a string of incredible saves, to thwart a Barcelona side which dominated the game from start to finish.

Marshall seemed unfazed by the situation he found himself in, as he stopped save after save. He was particularly impressive against Ronaldinho, who seemed to stage a one-man campaign to find the back of the net.

However, when the final whistle blew, the Hoops had pulled off a 0-0 draw, and found themselves in the quarter-final of the UEFA Cup for the second season in a row.

Also impressed at Ibrox

The result turned Marshall into an overnight sensation. Only three days later, he enhanced his reputation with a string of saves against Rangers in a 2-1 win at Ibrox.

Former Celtic goalkeeper David Marshall (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)

It seemed like he would be the Hoops goalkeeper for years, but it was not to be. He eventually lost his place in the side to Rab Douglas, then Artur Boruc, before eventually leaving the Hoops to join Norwich.

He had his best success at Cardiff, and is currently at Wigan, trying to help them avoid relegation from the Championship.

Marshall also has 33 caps for Scotland, but he will always be remembered most for that one night in Barcelona.