Happy Evan After
Anyone wondering why Evan Williams chose to end his enjoyable Molineux association in 1969-70 should probably have accompanied Wolves fanatic Gwilym Machin on the recent mission we encouraged him to undertake north of the border.
Armed with an old paper that he wished to pass on to the keeper, the adopted Glaswegian arranged – with some help from our end – to head for a beer in Dumbarton and loved what he saw of the 79-year-old’s life in his natural domain.
“We went to a place called the Lennox Bar, where he was very much among friends of a similar age and where the Celtic memorabilia on the walls had generous mentions of him,” Gwilym reported.
“We had a good chat about his career and sat in ‘Evan’s Corner’, so you can see how revered he is. They absolutely love him there.
“He had lots of tales but he kept coming back to Waggy and Frank Munro, who he was big friends with. He couldn’t believe Waggy never won an England cap.
“I was left with the impression that Evan loved his time at Wolves but couldn’t resist the lure of his beloved Celtic. He played in the 1970 European Cup final against Feyenoord in Milan and was named man of the match, which he’s very proud of.”
Less well known than the fact that he played 15 first-team games at Wolves after joining them in the second half of the 1960s was his stint across the patch in the Second Division.
“He went on loan to Villa but didn’t like Tommy Docherty,” Gwilym added. “He came back to Wolves and Bill McGarry told him there was interest from a Glasgow club.
“Evan knew it was Celtic as he had been contacted by them while he was at Villa. And Bill knew he’d want to go. He apparently told him at 10am and Evan was on the train by 11!”
Williams won four league titles and two Scottish Cups while at Parkhead after being signed as replacement for Lisbon Lion Ronnie Simpson.
He has worked in more recent times as a match-day host at the club and has also travelled as an ambassador to different parts of the world to meet the Hoops’ further-flung supporters.
The paper he has recent taken delivery of is one containing headlines from when he signed for Clyde in 1974. It came to light during a house clearance several months ago.