45 mins of Christie taught Hearts their place in the food chain


Craig Levein has taken lulling opponents into a false sense of security to a new level in recent months.  The only win they have had since March was against Championship Inverness in the Scottish Cup semi-final.

A draw against Hibs their only point from the last 21 available in the league.  By any conceivable measure, they are in the worst form of any club in Scotland.  After winning their opening five games, Levein was feted for his wisdom and general ability to restore “natural order”.

That must seem a lifetime ago to their supporters, who fancy themselves as the third force in the land, but have to contend with second in the capital and sixth overall.  They remained top of the league until November, when the wheels came off, initially in the league, and then at Murrayfield, when a transformational performance from Ryan Christie set the scene for Saturday’s treble.

Over a 45 minute period, Celtic found their golden touch and Hearts realised their place in the food chain.

Despite this, the champions have work to do to win on Saturday.  They have already lost to Hearts this season and lost heavily last term. The first half at Murrayfield, played without Christie, who will also miss Saturday’s final, was sobering, as we struggled to create a chance worthy of the name.  Just as Aberdeen did in the Scottish Cup semi-final Hearts will turn the final into a physical battle.  This is all they have in the locker.  We need to be prepared.


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    No Lawwell is exceptional within the narrow range of his role. Exceptional. And I know there are people on here who disagree with that.



    The problem is that he thinks he’s capable of poking his nose into other areas of the club where he is grossly unqualified to interfere.



    We need a DoF at Celtic. That’s been obvious for about five years, maybe longer. The day he told Ronny Deila who his assistant manager should be, under the specious rationale that he needed someone who “understood the Scottish game” … that overstepped the boundaries by miles.



    Apparently our largest shareholder IS happy with that … but he’s an absentee landlord anyway.

  2. What is the Stars on

    Good man james


    now re the manager


    As i said at 9.25 old chum


    The best available manager who comes within our wage range/transfer budget


    Thats who should get the job.


    Is that Neil Lennon…i have no idea


    Who sets the parameters..The people who run the club.


    Ok thats fairly simple.I dont lose sleep over these things because its beyond my control and more importantly it is only football after all. Its not real life Jamesy boy

  3. I doubt very much if Desmond is an absentee Landlord. There are such things as phones & video conferences,


    Desmond did not become a Billionaire by taking his eye off the ball.


    My understanding is Desmond is totally up to speed on the happenings at Celtic Park.

  4. Knightswoodbhoy on

    Gentlemen this argument will never reach an amiable conclusion James like many of us does not think Neil is the man for the job Others who do are reacting to the vehemence with which he states his views. The divide is unbridgeable can we not simply agree to disagree or am I being wildly optimistic?

  5. What is the Stars on

    By the way this game on Saturday is no foregone conclusion.


    Its going to be the toughest game these players will have played in 3 years.




    Well THAT’S an answer. Of sorts. And if you had treated the matter in an even semi-reasonable manner in the first place instead of turning it into a personal argument I’d have gone to bed an hour ago.



    See you’ve said an important thing here; “It’s only football after all … it’s not real life.”



    There are people on here who think you’re only a fan if you have a seat at Parkhead with your name on it and Lisbon Lions covers on the bed. Your attitude is refreshingly honest in light of that; I’m just amazed none of them have ever suggested that you’re not really a Celtic fan at all.



    But maybe that treatment is only reserved for those with whom they disagree.



    It’s their attitude which I abhor, because the one thing that unites us all on here is HOW MUCH we do care, and you can be coy about that as you like, but it’s a Thursday night and you’re fighting your corner as I’m fighting mine on behalf of the club.



    So respect to you and yours for that.

  7. James Forrest,



    Lawwell has been in role too long. He would clash with any strong manager.



    We should never forget his failure to bring in the 4 signing targets last summer which led to the Rodgers rebellion and subsequent shocking behaviour.



    Lawwell remains the biggest risk to 10 purely because its all about him before Celtic.



    Celtic should be looking for a CEO as well as a manager.

  8. Give Lenny the gig plus £15-20million to spend on players, and he wins you the league next season.



    Simple as that.



    I wouldn’t be surprised if he brings CL qualification also.



    The only doubt is domestic cup ties, and let’s be honest we were robbed blind on more than one occasion.



    See it all depends on how high and realistic our expectations are for the club.



    Jurgen Klopp terrific manager, however he’s only spent circa half a billion on players.



    HH. ?

  9. Guys please stop with the personal insults, make your argument without playing the man.


    I have deleted a good posts, anyone has any issues with what has been deleted please e-mail Paul.

  10. Lucky Cody,


    sorry hit post too early,


    i am referring to your post at 10.57

  11. CORKCELT, have to much respect for you to say that as well you know.just a differing of opinion.hh.




    Hmmmm yes and no.



    See, I’m ever mindful of the fact that this is the board that appointed Brendan Rodgers in the first place.



    In the last nearly two decades I’ve seen this club rise to meet the moment twice … and on both occasions we achieved magnificent things. The first time was when we appointed Martin O’Neill, and I understand those who said he let the wage bill get out of control. He stayed loyal to certain players for too long and it burns me that he lost titles to the likes of McLeish … but by God those were big years.



    A European final, man. I mean come on …



    And the second time, of course, was Brendan. When we have gone for it, big time gone for it, it has paid off. To a certain extent I would also include Gordon Strachan in that, because he wasn’t cheap and he got money to spend. I remember his signings in the first season, they couldn’t have been cheap. Nakamura is perhaps my favourite Celtic signing since the King himself.



    (I was a huge Larsson fan before we signed him. I am dead chuffed with the result!)



    The thing is, Lawwell has been there through all that. We can’t hold him accountable for the mistakes whilst not giving him a degree of praise for the successes. He said at one point that Mowbray would be his epitaph. He also said that Steven Fletcher would be the name carved on his headstone.



    But I sat at a meeting with that guy on the morning after a board member had briefed against Rodgers the night before, at the AEK game at Parkhead, and I told him “Look on the bright side, if this goes bad you’ll never have to hear the name Steven Fletcher again …”



    He laughed. He got the point, but it wasn’t a joke and we both knew it.



    I was seriously disquieted when I left that day. I knew there was no going back to good times between the two, because I knew he thought he was right and I knew Rodgers would think the same. At that meeting he actually referred to the seven in a row and double trebles as his record …



    He’s said the same, by the way, to members of the press; Alison Connell of the Evening Times put that line in an article but never subjected to any kind of scrutiny. Reading that I was reminded of Graham Spiers saying that “succulent lamb was served on both sides of the city.”



    We definitely need a DoF, someone to support the manager and insulate him from interference.



    But whilst I’ve argued before that CEO’s are ten a penny and that we could get someone for a fraction of Lawwell’s salary to do that job, I wonder now if that’s entirely right … football is a very specialised business and he definitely understands it very well and performs well within his own paramenters.



    With a DoF I would hope he’d keep the hands off football operations and give up the signings and stuff to someone more qualified and likely to get deals over the line etc instead of second guessing the manager. If he did give that role up I’d be happy to have him at Parkhead beyond ten and whatever.

  13. Dermot Desmond somehow managed to convince Brendan Rodgers to come to Celtic, which was magic.



    The problem now is that a section of the support expects / demands a manager of equal stature to replace Brendan, and that unfortunately is virtually impossible.



    O’Neill was another managerial giant at the time, but that was ages ago and look how long it took for us to get another manager of that calibre.



    10 is everything now, and Lenny is the man to deliver it provided he is backed financially.



    Zero risk appointment.



    HH. ?

  14. Knightswoodbhoy on

    16 Roads last time round the domestic cups were a running sore of embarrassment ffs and robbed blind is an excuse , noticed there was a marked absence of successful robbing under the last manager compared to Neil’s previous tenure

  15. I’ve had deletions too, not sure why. Anyhow I’m tired and I want to go to bed, highly unlikely to be on again before the game, so I’ll just wish our team & Caretaker Manager Neil Francis Lennon all the best in the Final.


    Goodnight & God Bless All.

  16. Davie Moyes has been spotted in St Vincent’s tonight, trying to learn a few tunes in advance of Monday I hear……..

  17. I can oy imagine what sort of absolute pishy opinion has been dressed as fact until this point.



    NB – and note to mods, potential mods, would be mods, punks, rockers et al…



    The word ‘pishy’ is being used after bedtime or watershed.. as it is now known…. for young uns..



    It is not defamatory, doesn’t overuse expletives and is actually quite descriptive (IMHO [{in my humble opinion,hereinafter known as IMHO}] … Which is another pish acronym…. [*oh feck it… I’m trying to do away with this old draconian, antiquited, harvard style of references…. And legalese nonsense that is never taught in schools. They used to teach Latin too you know. I was the only pupil in OLHS that got over 90% in the classical studies exam… But then dogged it the next year cos… “none ae ma mates were in the class”



    Ha ha… I’ve had beers now.. Better get aff the blog…. Fan Dan’s are fan Dan’s… Let them be.



    I will, hopefully, and I keep Faith everyday and pray to the cosmos we will… be celebrating a treble treble @ 5:30pm Saturday 25th of May, an amazing date in my/our history……



    Anyone who isn’t…






    They’re a fan Dan!



    Love Celtic ???



    I do ??????

  18. My friends in Celtic,



    We should have sold Dedryck Boyata after the AEK Athens debacle. Maybe it’s fate that we then got £9m for BR leaving early.



    I don’t buy this player power, the manager must reserve the right to manage and must be backed by his board.



    Personally I enjoyed Brendan Rodgers time at Paradise; I cannot retract that I thought he was the best fit possible for us. I still maintain that he brought a professionalism to our club that was lacking and his demeanour on and off the park was exceptional. I cannot forget his aftermatch interviews where the pub went silent.



    No matter who our new manager will be , Brendan Rodgers has set the standards. It is imperative we retain these standards.



    HH to all.




    We’re told, it was BR that vetoed the sale of Dedryk Boyata, and he said as much himself.



    The players agent could not find the manager at Lennoxtown and BR evaded him.



    Personally, I think BR got that one right as DB helped win the league, if we’d sold him


    we may not have.

  20. KNIGHTSWOODBHOY on 23RD MAY 2019 11:40 PM



    16 Roads last time round the domestic cups were a running sore of embarrassment ffs and robbed blind is an excuse , noticed there was a marked absence of successful robbing under the last manager compared to Neil’s previous tenure






    He still won two Scottish Cups.



    You need to remember that the old club were at death’s door during his tenure, and the cheating was off the scale as they tried desperately to keep the life support on.



    HH. ?

  21. GORDYBHOY, luv ya to bits don’t want to fall out with you, but there was more than 2 or 3 anyway roll on the treble treble.hh.

  22. 16 ROADS:



    Hmmmm. Zero risk? No, I don’t agree with that at all.



    I think we are more than capable of attracting a manager of calbre, but here’s the thing; it doesn’t need to be a box office manager of the sort that fills newspapers etc. In my heart of hearts I don’t believe it will be a Benitez or a Mourinho. There are guys below that level, some of whom have already slipped away over the summer, like Rose, like Wagner, Cocu might be about to take a job in Spain …



    These guys aren’t box office in the sense that everyone knows who they are. Wagner was one that I was only vaguely aware of, and my mate banged that drum in my ear and I was more than impressed by what I found out when I looked into the guy.



    Doubtless there are other names like that out there. It just depends how ambitious we want to be.



    10 is vital, of course it is, but everything? Our club will be here beyond 2021 whether we hit the magic number or not. There’s no reason why we won’t, even with Lennon in charge. Phil asked me today whether I thought Lennon COULD win the ten; I told him Lennon WOULD win the ten even with the current squad, but that wasn’t the point.



    That appointment would carry multiple risks, not the least of which should be readily apparent; a large section of the support has already made its mind up and we’d be a house divided if he didn’t make an instant impact. Even if I were willing to duct-tape myself to a chair to cease critical analysis I’m one guy. And that’s something some folks on here aren’t understanding; I’m just one guy.



    I’m not alone in feeling like this. Shutting me up will not matter at all, and that gives me too much credit anyway. I’m just a blog guy, nothing more, and my opinion does not matter beyond how I feel when I press publish. People agree or disagree … I’m not changing anybody’s mind.



    I don’t think Lennon will be a bad appointment; I think it will be a disastrous appointment. I didn’t feel that way at the start when he got the job on the interim basis. I thought bad. Unimaginative. Lacking ambition. I am way past that now, having watched the team, having listened to his press interviews, having considered properly and carefully his career thus far.



    Disastrous doesn’t have to mean failing to win the nine or the ten although I will not say that I competely rule out the possibility of a full-scale meltdown, because I don’t but I wish I did.



    I’ll say this as well; I have said it would be a cheap appointment. I have revised that notion in recent weeks as well. Lennon will not be a cheap option. He might well prove to be the most expensive of all the options because the board will need to fund him above and beyond what another manager might get. First, because it will be necessary to placate the section of the support that thinks it will be a sign of doing things on the cheap and in part to try and convince us that the club still has ambition … an argument I will not accept no matter how much of that cash surplus they throw at it.



    But more than that, it’ll be expensive because I have never seen any evidence that as a manager he can make players better footballers. If there are examples where he has I’ll be happy to acknowledge them if they are pointed out to me, or at least debate the issue.



    Rodgers was exceptional at that. That he pulled off the miracle with Ronny Deila’s team … what a credit to him as a manager that is. Does Lennon have a similar record? Because otherwise we’re looking at the kind of summer they enjoy so much over in Ibrox; ten or more signings, and that every year to follow.



    It don’t come cheap.

  23. We are, whatever the result, two days away from the end of an historic era…



    The Moderator is right… take a step back…



    There are far too many wolves in sheep’s clothing, those who want a “truce” until the season’s over, which means fholk that don’t agree with them need to shut-up while they put the boot-in…



    WHAT IS THE STARS @ 9:25 PM,



    “What is the criteria for appointing the new Manager?



    Will it be the best man available within our wage range/transfer budget ?



    I would imagine so



    Why would you imagine so.!?



    Lennon didn’t fill that criteria when we appointed him, Ronny Delia didn’t fulfil that criteria when we appointed him.



    Brendan Rodgers certainly fulfilled the wage range thing – but we certainly not the transfer budget.



    So I ask again…



    …why on earth would you imagine so!?



    !!BADA BING!! @ 10:13 PM,



    Brendan Rodgers gets a lot of criticism in his relationships with players.



    I’m not sure how much is justified or not…



    One thing though… it was as nothing compared to what Ronny Delia endured.



    Kris Commons comments about him were a disgrace



    His behaviour…






    I remember the look on John Collins face that evening… if only he was thinking…



    What did Kris Commons do for Ronny Delia!?






    The only thing that matters now is the bhoys on Saturday… they have given there all… win, lose or draw they deserve this moment.



    Hail Hail

  24. And before anyone say summit…



    …Lenny was changed to Lennon by spell checker…



    Apologies to Neil…



    Hail Hail

  25. !!Bada Bing!! on

    JAMES FORREST on 23RD MAY 2019 10:20 PM


    !!BADA BING!!:







    Commons was the guy who was a half dozen goals shy of the 100 club and who Rodgers never even gave a minute on the park, right? I wonder why he could possibly be angry at him?



    KC had a back injury which retired him.

  26. JAMES FORREST on 23RD MAY 2019 11:54 PM






    Thanks for the considered response.



    Good healthy debate with differing opinions, we just don’t happen to agree on this particular subject.



    I view Lenny as steady and safe, whereas you prefer a host of risky leftfield options.



    HH. ?




    You know, I am glad you posted that Commons clip.



    It is one of the most outrageous things I’ve ever seen a Celtic player do.



    I’ve always wondered if that was one of the reasons Rodgers never warmed to him. I always found it curious that he never got even a sniff after Rodgers arrived. He was one of our best footballers and never even got a look in. It can’t have all been about the playing style and a willingness to cover other players and track back.



    I wonder if Rodgers wanted to make a point about professionalism.

  28. JAMES FORREST @ 12:15 AM,



    Stan’s Comments say it all. He was someone who knew what Celtic stood for.



    I’m sure when BR took Scott into his home for a meal and a chat, the behaviour of the senior players under Ronny was at the heart of the matter.



    Professionalism would be key to who played a part in the invincible, treble Season…




    !!BADA BING!! @ 12:21 AM,



    You are without doubt a top contributor here, hope you don’t see my point as anyway a criticism of that…



    Enjoy Saturday… it’s our day…



    Hail Hail




    Absolutely agree. The message it would have sent to others in the dressing room would have been impossible to ignore too. Commons was on the brink of 100 goals for the club. That’s one Hell of a warning shot to fire at the rest of the team. It was certainly effective.

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