Commentators Archie MacPherson and Arthur Montford have seen thousands of games. But what are the great European ties that stand out?

To mark tomorrow's magazine on Glasgow's great Euro nights - and next week's Uefa Cup final - Russell Leadbetter asked them to revisit their greatest games. ARCHIE MacPHERSON

GLASGOW was never more alive than it was on April 19, 1972. Just a few miles apart, Ibrox Stadium and Celtic Park were each staging a European semi-final.

There were 80,000 fans in the south side for Rangers v Bayern Munich in the European Cup-Winners' Cup and 75,000 in the East End for Celtic v Inter Milan in the European Cup.

"No city anywhere," boasted the Evening Times at the time, "could pull out 155,000 fans on the same night."

That night has forever remained with Archie MacPherson, one of Britain's best-known football commentators.

"Glasgow created what you would call a record - more people turned out on a single night to see football than any other city in Europe ever since," says Archie, who covered the Celtic game that night for the BBC.

Jock Stein's men crashed out 5-4 on penalties, but Rangers celebrated after goals by Sandy Jardine and European debutant Derek Parlane gave them a 3-1 aggregate win and propelled them into the final in Barcelona.

"It was a remarkable night, because that was the night Celtic's Dixie Deans missed the first kick in the penalty shoot-out," recalls Archie. "It was dramatic and absorbing."

Archie had been one of the 130,000 spectators in 1960 who watched spellbound as the maestros of Real Madrid beat Eintracht Frankfurt 7-3 to win in Hampden's first Euro final, their fifth consecutive European Cup Final victory.

"It was like going to the theatre and seeing the best of the Broadway or London stage shows. You were enthralled by it.

"But for sheer drama you had to go to the Old Firm.

"I well remember Celtic's European Cup match against Vojvodina on March 8, 1967, when they were within an ace of going to Rotterdam for a replay."

Jock Stein's men had lost 1-0 in Yugoslavia in the first leg of their quarter final. They had pulled a goal back through Stevie Chalmers in the second leg in Glasgow, but they needed to win.

"Stein later told me he had turned to his assistant, Sean Fallon, that night and said, Oh for God's sake, it looks like we're going to Rotterdam.' "Then Billy McNeill scored a winner in the last seconds, and the place erupted. You couldn't forget that game for its tension, the drama and the climax."

Another night that stands out is April 15, 1970, when Celtic beat Leeds United 2-1 at Hampden in the European Cup semi-final, watched by a phenomenal crowd of 136,505.

"Billy Bremner scored an amazing goal and Celtic came back at them with goals by John Hughes and Bobby Murdoch - that was a particularly dramatic night."

Although the 1960 European Cup final was a classic, Archie is less taken with the other European Cup - or Champions League - finals staged in Glasgow, in 1976 and 2002.

"The Zinedine Zidane goal was the only thing you could talk about in the last final and in 1976 the better team lost."

One reason why the memory of the Old Firm games has stayed with him, he thinks, is because the teams were composed of Scots-born players ... "and you were rooting for boys of your ain folk' - you were sucked into it that way, that tribal identity way."

The game has never lost its appeal for Archie, not once.

"Sometimes you are travelling to a game, much as you travel to your work, and you think, well, another day', but as soon as the whistle goes, you're away, you're involved.

"When you are abroad, you get nervous, the adrenalin starts to pump, the old ticker goes and you think, If I'm like this, what's it like for players on the park?'" ARTHUR MONTFORD

ORDINARY fans remember big European games for their goals, the vivid atmosphere, the sweet taste of victory.

As a professional broadcaster, however, Arthur Montford, recalls them for slightly different reasons .

"I remember going with Celtic to Hungary to see them play Ujpest Dozsa in a European Cup tie in the early 1970s.

"The Hungarians had been difficult to negotiate with over access to the game.

"When I arrived there was no commentary position as such, just a table along from the dug-outs with a Gaumont British News microphone on it.

"There was no technician who spoke English. Our producer was in the van watching the pictures going out and trying to make contact with Glasgow - which he couldn't establish.

"I did the whole of the commentary but not a single frame got back to Glasgow. My colleague, Alex Cameron, padded it out for an hour by listening to the radio commentary to keep the viewers up with the action as best he could.

"On the plane going home I was sitting at the back of the plane, really miserable.

"Celtic had lost, too, but the late Desmond White, the club chairman, took the trouble to come and say, Well, I guess you could say we both had a bad day'.

"He kindly asked me to join them for a meal, which I did. I'm a teetotaller, but I was sorely tempted that night."

Arthur, who appeared in some 2000 Scotsports before he retired in 1989, remembers Rangers playing Sparta Rotterdam at Ibrox in the second leg of the European Cup quarter final, on March 30th, 1960.

"I'd got the teams and spoken to the manager beforehand," says Arthur of the game. "But it was a misty, dull night, and our filming platform was almost behind one of the goals.

"Rangers were attacking the goal closest to us, and I could just make out the figures and no more.

"Unknown to me, Rangers keeper George Niven had been injured in the dressing-room and replaced by Billy Ritchie. I spent the first half calling Ritchie George Niven. I felt awful about it, but the fans were quite forgiving."

Arthur was a pioneer back in the days when TV football coverage was still finding its feet.

Arthur recalls fondly the era when he would recognise fans' faces as he made his way along the gantry to the filming platforms above the famous Jungle at Celtic Park, and above the enclosure at Ibrox right above the fans.

He believes his modern-day TV counterparts "have it absolutely made nowadays.

"The huge technological advances have really been wonderful: the seven or eight cameras; cameras behind the goals; the lines drawn across to indicate offside.

"Back then, you had two or three cameras - that was it. Replays were an occasional luxury. And of course even the weather seemed worse, way back - Glasgow fogs, for instance.

"I always felt that the midweek European nights - crisp nights, with the floodlights shining down - were always very special.

"Right up to the last one I did, which was a Dundee United game, they never lost their appeal for me."