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A Debut to forget !
Danny made his debut in the Scottish Junior Cup 1st Round tie away to Largs Thistle. The Glens got off to a good start when right-half Tarbert put them ahead early in the match. The home side equalised and then went 2-1 in front but to make matters worse the Glens goalie Ballantyne was badly injured in the process and by half-time it 4-1 for Largs. In the days before substitutions Ballantyne was moved to the outside right position and after a re-shuffle goalscorer Tarbert went in goals - Thistle went on to score seven more goals and win 11-1.
Largs: Butchart; Anderson & Cameron; Kerr, McLean & Grant; Burchill, Hearns, Cook, McKay & McFadzean. Glenafton: Ballantyne, Jackson & Murray; Tarbert, Rodgerson & Hume; Cathcart, McCulloch, Beggs, Bury & McWilliams
An early exit from the Scottish Junior Cup had its consolations by way of entry into the Ayrshire Consolation Cup. The Glens reached the final where they defeated Muirkirk Juniors.
The Glens also reached the final of the Vernon Trophy where they lost out 2-1 to South Section League winners Auchinleck Talbot at Townhead Park, Cumnock on Saturday 18th June 1955, where £62 was taken at the gate. In a game notable for both sides having goalkeepers called Ballantyne, inside-left Bury scored the Glens goal - a position that Danny would later make his own.
Glens Team: Ballantyne, Rogers,Murray; Hamilton, Hume, Campbell,Carter, McNamara, Brewster, Bury and McCulloch
Record Crowd at Connel Park
Saturday 27th January 1957
Danny scored the opening goal in the 2-0 in over Rutherglen Glencairn in the 4th Round of the Scottish Junior Cup to set up a 5th Round tie at home against Kilsyth Rangers. The game finished 2-2, with Roy Thorburn hitting a double for the home side, in front of a record crowd of 8,000 at Connel Park. Unfortunately the Glens lost the replay 3-1 and Kilsyth went on to lose to Banks O' Dee in the final at Hampden.
Glens team: Back: Bert Murray, John McNaught, Richard Carruthers, Bert Jackson, John Stirling, James Templeton
Front: John Cathcart, James Donnelly, Robert Thorburn, Daniel McCulloch, Thomas Graham.
Vernon Trophy Runners Up
The Glens reached the final of the Vernon Trophy but lost out 3-2 to Ardeer Thistle in the final at Portland Park, Troon. ).
If the Cap fits
Danny's performances for the Glens earned him two Scottish International caps - the first against Wales at Tynecastle in which he scored in the 3-1 victory. His second cap came against Ireland at Tolka Park, Dublin where the Scottish side were triumphant again and by the same scoreline. Danny was the only representative from the Western League.
The day after the match the Scotland team were guests at the F.A.I. Challenge Cup semi-final between Limerick and Shamrock Rovers at Dalymount Park, Dublin -t he Rovers went on to lose 2-0 to Drumcondra in the final.
Scotland team vs. Irleand
Friday 29th March 1957
John Thomson (Glasgow Perthshire), Robert McFarlane (Petershill), Denis Mochan (Kilsyth Rangers), Jame Warrender (Banks O' Dee), James Gwynne (Larkhall Thistle), Andrew Higgins (Newtongrange Star), Richard Ewen (Banks O' Dee), John Colrain (Duntocher Hibs), Dennis Gillespie (Duntocher Hibs), Daniel McCulloch (Glenafton Atheltic), Gilbert Ormond (Bo'ness united)
Scorers: Colrain (2), Gillespie
Danny finished the season as top goalscorer, with 27 goals ahead of John Cathcart (24) and Roy Thorburn (15). He bagged 4 goals in the 5-3 win over Lesmahagow in the 3rd Round Scottish Junior Cup 2nd replay at Larkhall and also hit hat-tricks in home league wins over Hurlford United (8-4) and Ayr Newton Rovers (8-0).
Stepping up to the Seniors
Former England internationalist Reg Smith resigned as manager of Dundee United in January 1957 to take over the hot seat at Brockville, when Falkirk were languishing at the foot of the First Division (then the top flight.) Smith not only saved the Bairns from relegation but went on to lead them to victory over Kilmarnock in the Scottish Cup Final at Hampden Park.
Danny was Smith's first signing for Falkirk but unfortunately his time with the Bairns was an unhappy one and he finished the season on loan to Stranraer. He was a big success at Stair Park scoring 5 goals in 10 appearances and despite Stranraer wanting to sign him for the following season, Danny returned to New Cumnock to play for his first love Glenafton Athletic.
Danny McCulloch (senior), Jim Sloan (secretary of Glenafton) and Reg Smith (Falkirk manager) look on as Danny MCulloch signs for Falkirk.
Danny McCulloch signs provisionally for Falkirk with Reg Smith and Jim Sloan looking on
November 19th, 1954
Danny scored his first Glens goal on November 19th, 1954 in a 5-1 league victory away at Whitletts Victoria. Scott put the home side ahead only for Campell to equalise. McWilliams gave the Glens lead and Brewster added a third. Danny, now at inside left, made it 4-1 before McWilliams completed the scoring. Glens Team: McGill; Newman & Murray; Tarbert, Hume & Campbell; Cathcart, Brewster, Bury, McCulloch & McWilliams