1000 actions in League Winning Machine


The most difficult period of the league campaign came in February.  We came from behind to secure a draw at Aberdeen.  That was followed by a bizarre game at Easter Road.  An early Adam Idah penalty put Celtic in control before we conceded an equaliser on the hour and were then shredded by Hibernian until a second Idah penalty kick in added time secured the win.

Next league game was home to Kilmarnock, when the visitors left with a point after a 92nd minute equaliser.  For me, that was the darkest moment.  The seven-point cushion we had built up earlier in the season was gone, replaced by what would be a two-point deficit when Newco played their game in hand.

You want to believe Celtic will win the league, but I left Celtic Park that day with a feeling of dread.  This was not ‘the 10’, defined by history, but it was a league title which would have significant impact on the future, and our trajectory was dreadful. I prepared myself for what felt like the inevitable.

That was 14 games ago.  A defeat at Tynecastle under controversial circumstances, a penalty kick progression in the Scottish Cup semi-final, and a drew at Ibrox were the only blemishes on an impeccable record since.

If Kilmarnock at home was the nadir, the draw at Ibrox was the pivotal determinant in the outcome of the title.  Newco went into the game with the hopes of winning and moving five points ahead.

Celtic dominated the first half but were ahead courtesy of two bizarre goals.  Daizen Maeda blocked a clearance 25 yards from goal which whizzed in the net, then Connor Goldson conceded a penalty for hitting the ball with his arm – bizarre, as Connor is never penalised for that!

We were ahead, but not through methods which we could replicate.  10 minutes into the second half Newco briefly thought they had drawn level, before VAR intervened for a foul on Tomoki Iwata 70 yards from goal.  Celtic were rattled and had that goal stood, the outcome of the season may have been different.  VAR, for all its problems, is necessary for these moments.

Celtic left Ibrox with the draw they needed to keep the title in their own hands.  Newco celebrated a late equaliser as though it was a winner, seemingly not understanding their best chance to take the title had just slipped through their fingers.

The remainder of our league campaign was more comfortable than you are likely to remember.  Dundee gave us a challenging 15 minutes.  Newco did the same for a similar period, but neither was able to test Joe Hart, never mind beat him during these periods, as Celtic defended a narrow lead.  Those games aside, we scored 11 goals without conceding before the title was secured at Rugby Park on Wednesday.

Looking back, this title was closer than it could or should have been.  Newco were so poor at one stage, they sacked their manager, yet we were drawn back into a battle after it appeared to be won.

There was a really telling point about where we are as a club after fulltime on Saturday.  Historically, the presentation stage was setup facing the South Stand.  This time, we had two stages and a second trophy lift for those in the North Stand.

When you win so often, you get to fine-tune everything about the process.  You know what winning looks like, you prepare for it confidently and you look for marginal improvements.  Celtic is a league winning machine, from going to Ibrox and getting the result, to giving all fans a chance to see the trophy being lifted and a thousand actions in between.

That is why we are champions today; that is what the challengers are up against.  They spent more on player wages than us to compensate for the deficit in professionalism in all areas.  Their plans for the season could have worked out, but it fell short, which will have harsh consequences.  More on that another time.

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  1. Melvin Udall on





    Brilliant post and perspective.


    Think the rift between the club and the Green Brigade didn’t help either. As the atmosphere was completely flat in the games they missed.



    Don’t agree with a lot of the stuff they do/say, but they were missed at that point in the season.



    Brendan knows his team now and can hopefully add the quality he’s been talking about in the summer.



    Roll-on next season. 😃🏆🍀🇮🇪⚽️🍾

  2. Watching sky sports debating VAR earlier.



    Stating the fans watching the games are like mushrooms when waiting on decisions. It was suggested that all should be replayed and explained over the big screens.



    Was gobsmacked to hear that the recently upgraded Anfield and the Old Traffold Water Feature do not have big screens.




  3. FAO SFTB.



    Another so called conspiracy theory found to be true decades later. The blood scandal of those deliberately infected.



    Establishment lies, deceit, document shreading and denials exposéd. Proscutions of the guilty still living must follow.



    Who would wager against the so called moon landings being exposed in the years to follow. Remember the many unexplained dissapearances, deaths and ” accidents”



    It is still happening. Be wary, be very wary.

  4. Aye he is but that would usually mean a report from dockside or even on board the ferry.



    Listen. Can you hear that.



    I can’t hear nuffin.



    That’s what I mean. It’s too quiet out there.



    Too damned quiet

  5. McPhail Bhoy on

    GREENPINATA on 20TH MAY 2024 1:56 PM


    Watching sky sports debating VAR earlier.


    Stating the fans watching the games are like mushrooms when waiting on decisions. It was suggested that all should be replayed and explained over the big screens.


    Was gobsmacked to hear that the recently upgraded Anfield and the Old Traffold Water Feature do not have big screens.








    Couldn’t agree more. As I and countless others have said we should be refereed just like rugby. Whole stadium and those at home hear the referee and TMO (VAR) as well as the explanation behind each decision, a no brainer. Also the clock should be stopped at injuries, ball out of play, substitutions etc. and once the clock goes to 90 minutes the game ends when next the ball is out of play. Does my head in the way referees arbitrarily decide how much additional time will be played. I know it was the last game of the season and I know we had already won the league but stopping Saturday’s game at 90 minutes was a joke. Please treat football supporters (customers) like grown ups, like rugby does!



    Big Screens at Anfield and Old Trafford, strange I know but I’m sure both can afford big tellies to be installed during the close season!

  6. screens at anfield and old trafford were considered a waste of valuable seating spaces during reconstructions and expansions.



    big topic at the time, and in this case fan pressure for more capacity won.



    but then , at both grounds, season ticket holders mostly turn up or resell their tickets through the exchance schemes.



    i was a little comflivted with weekend reports around klopp retirement and his “rebuild” of the team, and comparisons to shanks, paisley and dalglish, the bottom line , he won one championship,



    he was great for a period, but no so much in recent seasons,



    i fear they are about to bocome another united, a great name from the past and a marketeers continued dream.



    they celbrated 3rd place for goodness sake.

  7. McPhail


    I’m with you


    I’ve been on about stopping the clock when the ball is not in play – but it’s likely to be 35 mins each way ball in play.


    However it wouldn’t stop goalies holding the ball for too long and general interruptions in play

  8. KINGLUBO on 20TH MAY 2024 11:51 AM









    Matt Munro,





    Check this out



















    Thanks for that.



    I love Matt Munro,(better than Frank Munro) :)



    Other of my favourite crooners are Dean Martin and Tony Bennett, controversially for some am not a great fan of Frank Sinatra.




  9. For me, the come back against Motherwell when Idah got us back from the brink was a pivotal moment.



    I never felt certain we’d lose the league but it certainly was in the melting pot after the consecutive defeats to Killie and Hearts.

  10. i thought the whistle exactly on 90 minutes was a big fat blatent cheat.



    how many subs were there > how long did it take joe to get off the pitch,




    we could have scored again.



    the whole end of the game was stage managed, there were more ex celts in the 122 tunnel as there were on the park, and literally hundreds of staff to go make the podium,



    feckin pain in the arse, and the number of camera crews, seriously,



    och well it only happend 12 times every 13 years.

  11. and a bit churlish of me, but always annoys me when community shileds and european/world super cups are counted for a managers “honours won£, mere show games with a pot.

  12. McPhail Bhoy on

    Saint Stivs


    I agree with you on Klopp, he was a good manager and did one a championship and European cup but a great? I’m not so sure. I’d imagine when Bob Paisley left Anfield after a truly great period he was given a hand shake and a thank you, he wouldn’t have expected anything else. I also heard during the pot match commentary, Carragher? said he’s been a winner in his whole time in Liverpool, well actually he hasn’t nowhere near!

  13. Belmontbrian


    Matt is a great singer – I’ve only recently started listening to Frank Sinatra, better than I remember

  14. BELMONTBRIAN on 20TH MAY 2024 3:01 PM



    ” I love Matt Munro,(better than Frank Munro) :)







    Other of my favourite crooners are Dean Martin and Tony Bennett, controversially for some am not a great fan of Frank Sinatra.”





    I must strongly DISAGREE Mate.


    Tony Bennet was vastly over rated.


    Dean Martin was Brilliant.


    Frank Sinatra was ” The King of Swing”…FANTASTIC Singer…the best of the bunch.


    Have a listen to Sinatra singing ” OLE MAN RIVER”….Its better than the original by Paul Robeson,


    ALSO listen to Sinatra singing ” YOUNG AT HEART”…..and so many other fantastic songs.



    i used to disagree with my auld DA about Sinatra ( My DA’s favourites were AL JOLSON and NAT KING COLE ). My DA would always argue that Sinatra was NOT a Great singer…but that Sinatra KNEW how to put a song across ?



    I disagreed, as Ive always thought Sinatra was a FANTASTIC Singer, who ALSO KNEW how to put a Song across.



    I didnt disagree with my DA too often…He was bigger than me.





    HH Mate.

  15. Neil Lennon lands Rapid Bucharest job as Celtic hero reveals where new club are just like team he loves


    The former Hoops and Hibs gaffer has penned a deal until 2026 on his long-awaited dugout return.

  16. Well played Celtic!!



    DeRangement led to a derailing which had its seed in not handling at all well the hubris from the Dens Park pitch fiasco. Unable to fathom how this was Europeanly possible, Phillipe balked at the parochial nature of the SPFL and in the middle of all their endless moaning they had to go up to the epitomy of parochial SPFL , to Dingwall…. how Phillipe sighed for Stoke on a wet Tuesday. So then, to lose to the Staggies left Phillipe in jockshock and he never even remembered to shake the other manager´s hand…the reason being he didn´t want to shake anyone´s hand in Scotland by that time. Then more misery when the re-played game is finally played and they have now lost five out of six points up north!



    I think Celtic would have won the league anyway but they lost the plot big time and that can be fatal



    Another great occasion awaits on Saturday but nothing should be taken for granted. Phillipe is turning to a bit more brain with McCausland and Wright featuring more recently and they will be up for their win bonuses.



    I know it has its faults and limits but I still prefer the scottish league,



    We belong to Glasgow and Glasgow belongs to us

  17. GENE on 20TH MAY 2024 3:28 PM







    Matt is a great singer – I’ve only recently started listening to Frank Sinatra, better than I remember





    Have a listen to Sinatra singing ” OLE MAN RIVER ” from the Movie ” SHOWBOAT”….SUPERB Stuff.


    Sinatra singing ” YOUNG AT HEART”…its such an uplifting song IF you are feeling a bit down.


    I THINK ( ? ) Sinatra sang ” ” Young at Heart” when Co Starring in the Film of the same name along side the GREAT DORIS DAY, IF memory serves me correctly ?



    I will need to double check about the song ” Young at Heart ” being in the Film of the same name, as I MAY be getting mixed up with another great Sinatra song ?



    HH Mate.

  18. I hear folks on the Klopp comments but it wasn’t all about the trophy count.



    It was him stopping the rot of several decades, getting them playing some sweet fitba and bringing the city and team together. Marvelous memories are not always title days.

  19. FAO GENE…



    Maybe you could play Frank Sinatra singing ” YOUNG AT HEART” ( VIA YOUTUBE ), to your good lady on your 49th Anniversary this week ?



    Better still, you could learn the song and sing it to her on your Anniversary ? Then again, you could always MIME to the song instead ?






  20. PLB,



    Dross,?????.Just who of the players we signed were”Dross”.Lagerbielke,voted best defender in Sweden,now capped.


    Nawrocki,tell me what have you witnessed from his displays,that you would label”Dross”


    Odin,voted Norways best player last year.Young talented prospect.




    o.29 firs


    t team appearances for Benfica.Caught up in the glut of players they have.When has he been” Dross”.


    Luis Palma,.41 games,a good few from bench,12 goals,2 in CL,14 assists,some world class.Dross,??????????


    Yang.Very hot and cold.


    Oh,see above.


    If this is Dross in your opinion,then its a deliberately skewed opinion to once again harangue the Board.


    Not saying they dont need their arses kicked,but to use the players to do so is shameful.

  21. Bhoyjoebelfast on

    Almost sure ‘Young at Heart’ came from film of same name,Doris Day,Frank Sinatra and Gig Young.(mid 50s)?



    In the Film ” Young at Heart” starring Frank Sinatra and Doris Day, there was another actor who featured in the movie, his name was GIG YOUNG.



    Approx 9 or 10 years later in 1973/74, the GREAT MEL BROOKES was making the Classic Comedy Movie ” Blazing Saddles”.



    From the early days of filming, SOMEHOW had got the part of ” The WACKO KID”. Gig Young sadly was an alcoholic, and on his first day of shooting the movie, GIG turned up drunk as usual and couldnt deliver his lines.


    Met Brookes was raging with him and shouted out…” I wanted an actor who could play a Drunk…..not a Drunk playing a Drunk ” !


    GIG YOUNG was immediately FIRED on his first day.


    The part of ” The Wacko Kid” went to GENE WILDER….and the rest is history.



    Mel Brookes must have been the only guy in Hollywood who didnt know that Gig Young was an Alcoholic ?





  23. BHOYJOEBELFAST on 20TH MAY 2024 4:04 PM


    Almost sure ‘Young at Heart’ came from film of same name,Doris Day,Frank Sinatra and Gig Young.(mid 50s)?




    Yes mate…around 1954/1955 i believe.




  24. GIG YOUNG sadly never recovered from his alcohol problem and if memory serves me correctly…he later committed suicide.


    Very sad.

  25. BHOYJOEBELFAST on 20TH MAY 2024 4:16 PM


    Hope you are well Big Jimmy.




    Ive been a bit unwell recently so I havent been out anywhere, especially for Beers since the 8th May.


    I am itching to celebrate Celtics League success as Ive had NO BEEF for12 Days.


    Hopefully, I will manage a few Beers before the Cup Final ?


    HH Mate.

  26. AN TEARMANN on 20TH MAY 2024 4:18 PM




    IF only the Savoy ( and other discos) WALLS could talk ?


    I used to a ” Hit with the Chicks”….nowadays the ” Chicks just want to HIT ME” !






  27. Melvin Udall on

    TURKEYBHOY on 20TH MAY 2024 4:04 PM




    Great post TB and highlights a lot of stats most fans probably aren’t aware of.



    Also, I remember Khun being written off after only two games as “never a football player”.



    It can take top players up to a whole season, whilst playing regularly to adjust to a new country, league, culture etc. Never mind young players, some from different continents altogether.



    Got to give the new players some time to work with Brendan’s and see what he can get out of them.



    If he doesn’t fancy them after seeing them almost daily in training etc, then we have to trust his judgement. Same goes for players he does like and plays regularly. He clearly knows what he’s doing and let’s hope he gets the backing he deserves in the transfer market this summer.

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