Obituary: John Hughes

3 April 1943 – 1 August 2022

SAFC career 1 appearance / 0 goals.

Club historian Rob Mason pays tribute

Although he only played once for Sunderland, the last game of his career, John Hughes was once a very big name in the game. The brother of 1973 FA Cup winner Billy Hughes, John was injured on his debut for Sunderland and never played again – other than in a testimonial for his brother in 1977.  John’s only game for Sunderland against Millwall in January 1973 was the last time two brothers played alongside each other for Sunderland.

John is the eighth highest goal-scorer in Celtic’s history with 189 goals in 416 games. A physically powerful player he was almost impossible to knock off the ball. Nicknamed ‘Yogi’ after the cartoon character Yogi bear, Celtic fans would urge their team to ‘Feed the bear.’ He played  in seven league title winning seasons and participated in nine major domestic cup wins although injury sometimes prevented him playing in finals. One such occasion was in 1967 when he was ruled out of the European Cup final as Celtic became the first British team to win the trophy – although he had played in five of the eight games to get there. Three years later after scoring in the semi-final against Leeds at Hampden in front of a UEFA record crowd of 136,505 John played in the European Cup final against Feyenoord.

He also played for Crystal Palace for whom he scored the goal that was runner-up in the BBC’s first ever Goal of the Season competition. He won eight caps for Scotland, scoring against England in front of a crowd of over 130,000 at Hampden Park in 1968.








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