It is about time that Celtic defeated bitter rivals Rangers in a cup final. The Hoops have not achieved this feat since 2009. Now they have chance to put things right in Sunday’s Betfred Cup Final at Hampden Park. Neil Lennon’s side will no doubt be up for the game, as they aim to follow in the footsteps of Gordon Strachan’s side from a decade. We thought we’d take a look at where that team who defeated Rangers 2-0 in 2009 are now:
The Celtic cult hero eventually left the Hoops to join Fiorentina in 2010. Boruc, an extremely talented footballer then moved to England, joining Southampton. At the age of 39, Boruc is still playing, and is still in the English Premier League, at the moment with Bournemouth. He is not the first choice goalkeeper, but has still had a good career since leaving the Hoops and signed a new deal with Bournemouth in the summer.
The German right-back had a decent career with the Hoops, helping them to a league title in 2008, before leaving to join Freiburg. Since then, he has worked as a coach in a variety of rules at Stuttgart, as reserve and assistant manager of Stuttgart II. He then had a spell of assistant manager of the first-team, and was even very briefly manager of the first-team. Hinkley recently ended his long association with Stuttgart to join up with Domenico Tedesco at Spartak Moscow as assistant manager.
The centre-back had an up and down career at Celtic, but left the club in 2012 as a title winner. Loovens left the Hoops when his contract expired to join Real Zaragoza, then he had five successful seasons at Sheffield Wednesday. That came to an end in 2018, and he spent last season with Sunderland. At the moment though he is currently without a club after leaving Sunderland in the summer.
The man who lifted the trophy as Hoops captain was expected to have a long career at the Hoops, but it didn’t happen. He fell out of favour with Tony Mowbray, and move to Middlesbrough on loan. After three years at Middlesbrough, McManus had spells with Bristol City and Motherwell before retiring in 2017. He then worked as a coach at Motherwell before returning to Celtic Park as a coach earlier this year.
The Irish centre-back was Celtic’s unlikely hero at Hampden Park. His header gave the Hoops the lead in the first period of extra time. That was probably the highlight of his Celtic career, as he helped the Hoops record a rare cup final win over Rangers. After leaving Celtic he joined a number of teams, having most success at Dundee where he played for three years. Now he is back at Celtic and has a very important job, managing the under-18 team.
After leaving Celtic in 2009, Caldwell had a very successful six year spell at Wigan, who he captained to an FA Cup triumph over Manchester City in 2013. After retiring, Caldwell has worked as at a few clubs as manager, including his old team Wigan. Caldwell most recently managed Partick Thistle, but was sacked earlier this season after a run of poor results.
The free-kick expert left Celtic on a free contract at the end of the season, joining Espanyol. He then returned to Japan, and incredibly enough at the age of 41 he is still playing football. He joined Japanese second division side Yokohama FC in the summer. Nakamura was a great player for the Hoops aside from his trademark free-kicks, and deserves to be remembered as a Hoops legend.
What is there to say about Scott Brown? The man is a modern day Celtic legend. He has captained the Hoops to eight domestic trophies and three domestic trebles in a row. Even though he is 34, Brown is still a massively important player for the club, just a few days ago he scored the last minute winner against Hamilton that moved the Hoops clear at the top of the league. He will be a key player for Celtic in the bid for nine in a row.
The battling midfielder was one of a number of players who left Celtic at the end of the 2008-09 season. Hartley had spells at Bristol City and Aberdeen, before moving into management. He has managed Alloa, Dundee and Falkirk, doing well at Dundee, who he helped establish at a Premier League club. He is currently the manager of League Two side Cove Rangers, who at the time of writing are top of the league.
The winger sealed Celtic’s victory with a penalty towards the end of the second-half of extra time. The fans’ favourite eventually left the Hoops in 2010, joining Spartak Moscow. He then moved to the Premier League, joining Everton, and is currently at Sunderland, where after signing a one-year contract in the summer he is trying to help the Black Cats win promotion to the Championship.
The Hoops striker wasn’t at his very best on the day at Hampden, but still did enough to pick up a winner’s medal. Was one of a number of Celtic players who joined Gordon Strachan at Middlesbrough, and then spent time at the likes of Millwall, Motherwell and Dundee United. Seemed set for a career in the media before helping Partick Thistle avoid relegation last year. He then returned to Australia, joining Western United.
Mark Wilson helped the Hoops win the title in 2012 before moving to Bristol City. Has now moved into management and is currently Brechin City boss. Georgios Samaras spent six productive years with the Hoops before joining West Brom in 2014. He is currently the vice-president of OFI Crete, where he is working with his father who is sporting director. Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink left the Hoops for Hull City in 2009, and eventually returned to former club PSV, where he was appointed as head of recruitment last year. Unused substitute goalkeeper Mark Brown now works for the police after leaving Dumbarton, and Marc Crosas has a media career and can be regularly found supporting the Hoops on Twitter.