When Bobby Petta and Fernando Ricksen lined up for their first Glasgow derby in 2000 neither could have guessed how the next 22 minutes would shape their career.
Rangers £4m full-back was withdrawn from the fray midway through the first half and never fully recovered from being tormented by his opposite number.
For Petta the match turned around his flailing Celtic career. The out of touch and out of place misfit signed by John Barnes and Kenny Dalglish was transformed into a hero as Martin O’Neill’s side signalled their intentions to Dick Advocaat’s ‘benchmark’ side.
On Sunday Petta will put the hoops on for the Celtic Masters side at Braehead happy to bask in the reflected glory of the game forever known as ‘the 6-2 match’.
Doubles from Henrik Larsson and Chris Sutton, plus goals from Stan Petrov and Paul Lambert fill the You Tube coverage of the day but for those that witnessed it in the flesh Petta’s tormenting performance against Ricksen will remain one of the classic memories of the day.
“I’ve still got him in my back-pocket,” wide boy Petta joked when asked about Ricksen’s whereabouts.
“Most of the time supporters want to talk to me about Ricksen and the 6-2 match which is great. He never lasted half an hour it was just 22 minutes and that felt great in my first match against Rangers.
“My performance was very satisfying and it was a great day for everyone in the team. It was an important win but it amazes me how thrilled the supporters are about the game 11 years later. It’s good to be reminded of such a special day.
“There was a lot riding on that game for the new manager and the players. That brought pressure but we knew on the day that we weren’t going to lose. To win 6-2 meant everything to us because we never thought it would be anything like that. It did and the rest is history.”
Petta is now back in Glasgow and has his own fitness business inbetween his commitments watching Celtic.
Sunday’s event sees Celtic joining Rangers, St Mirren, Kilmarnock, Motherwell and Sunderland battling it out for the Northern Masters title with Petta anxious to get back in the hoops.
He added: “I got asked a month ago to play in the Masters and was delighted to accept. I’m looking forward to it a lot and catching up with the boys again. It should be a great afternoon.
“Since I came back to Glasgow the supporters have been amazing with me. It’s pleasing to be watcing Celtic as a supporter and the fans don’t seem to have forgotten me.
“I’m happy to be back in Glasgow, it’s got a special place in my heart and it’s easy enough to get back to Holland to see my parents. People know me in Glasgow and they respect what I’m doing in the fitness business
“We had a fantastic time under Martin O’Neill winning a lot of trophies and playing good football. We had some special European times as well and I’m sure that will come back to Celtic Park under the new manager.
“Lenny has done well and I’m looking forward to the start of the new season.”
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