By Andrew Atkinson
CRAIG Brown reflected on his managerial career as he notched up another year on celebrating his 79th birthday on July 1, pinpointing the day he sold Steve Archibald for £25,000 – only to make a £1 million move to Barcelona.
“Spain are a superb footballing nation, a team Scotland have played at full international, u21 and youth level,” former Scotland manager Craig told me in an exclusive interview.
Glasgow born Craig, in charge of the national team during 1993-2001, was manager at Clyde when he sold Archibald for a paltry sum.
“I sold Steve Archibald from Clyde to Aberdeen in 1978 – for only £25,000 – and he went on to join Barcelona for £1m,” said Craig, a non executive director at Scottish Premier League club Aberdeen.
Star striker Archibald joined Spanish giants Barca, in a move from Spurs in 1984, making 55 appearances, scoring 24 goals, winning the Spanish League in 1985.
Archibald was shipped out on loan to Blackburn Rovers during the 1987-88 season, before leaving Barca in a move to Hibernian in 1988, returning to Spain, when joining Espanyol in 1989.
Craig, CBE, Scotland’s longest serving national manager, who was also in charge of Preston North End, Motherwell and Aberdeen, said: “Steve Archibald went for £25,000 – moved on for £1m – and there was no sell-on clause in those days!”.
Craig was in charge of the Scotland under 16s team that reached the 1989 World Cup Final against Saudi Arabia, played in front of 88,000 spectators at Hampden Park.
Scotland beat Portugal, managed by Carlos Queiroz, in charge at Real Madrid during 2003-04, whose team included Portugal legend Rui Costa and former Barcelona star Luis Figo, in the World Cup u16s semi final.
“I remain good friends with Carlos,” said Craig.