Challenge for makeshift Celtic


Anyone who thinks that Rangers will arrive at Celtic Park on Wednesday evening low on confidence or strategy better think again.  For all their poor recent form they are top of the league, beat Celtic comfortably earlier this season and have a squad full of players who know what it’s like to win the league.

They will revert to a familiar strategy.  Pack the midfield, deny Celtic’s creative players space, take no chances at the back and wait for a seasonal gift from Celtic.  I watched their recent defeat to St Mirren and I think it’s possible to question some players’ attitude to the game but things will be different at Celtic Park.  Already written off by many, ironically, they will arrive with the confidence only a team with nothing to lose can muster.

Celtic’s league form over the last two months has been exceptional and their Europa League performances indicate there is a lot more to come from this squad but they still have plenty to prove.  A particular concern will be the lack of a settled team in recent months.  Kelvin Wilson is likely to start his first game in months and I’d not be surprised to see Emilio Izaguirre back.

The front pairing is also a concern.  Georgios Samaras is back to his best form but he and Hooper have never convinced as a partnership.  We have to hope that Victor Wanyama can be relieved of central defensive duties to allow him to anchor midfield alongside Beram Kayal.  Neither Brown nor Ki are sufficiently imposing in the crucial central midfield area.  No matter how Celtic start on Wednesday the team will have a makeshift feel to it, any win will be hard earned.

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  1. The article written by Traynor today is awful.


    But it’s not the one ‘Awe Naw’ ‘re-produces’.




    Awe Naw yer a fud,

  2. CultsBhoy hates being 2nd on




    Elbows is past it..past even being thuggish to players we have – I’d love Elbows to match up against Sammi – too tall, too good too fast for him to Elbow!

  3. fatherandbhoy says:


    26 December, 2011 at 20:51



    Always amazed when fholk are taken in


    by that rascal awe naw,the bugger is always at it ,do not believe a word he writes:O)

  4. pabloh_AKA_NEIL LENNON on

    Bhoys…..ignore traynor and the nonsense the DR prints for him.



    Beat them on wed and it’s happy days. Two clear and we will only keep getting better.



    For me, I’d play a CB pairing of mulgrew and wanyama. Both very composed.



    But I’d imagine gers two tactics will be 1. High ball to jelavic and hope for the best, and 2. Kick Celtic off the park and hope brother COLLUM allows it. So maybe a bigger CB like Wilson may be played to win headers.



    I’m only think out loud remember.



    After a beer or two…



    I would play ledley left back, no chance I’d give someone just back from a leg break his first game v lafferty, Mcculloch et al – asking for trouble.



    Samaras must start and Lenny must tell him – run at them every time.



    Due to the fact that it will be a battle and they will flood the midfield, I’m unsure I’d start Ki. 3 middle men of kayal wanyama brown could work with Forrest and samaras wide and hoops up front could work. As Paul 67 has said, 2 in the middle of kayal and Ki could be a bit lightweight.



    I’ll take a scrappy 1-0…

  5. I see you are posting some links to the articles from the Scottish press. All before the game after tomorrow. Something from another direction. Famous Croat made short interview in his country. Short translation here.



    Journalist: Niki, media tell everyday that you have offers from other clubs? Will you be going this transfer window.


    Niki: Actually, every day I woke up and the media here see me in another, new club. To be honest with you I got only two offers and they were both from Spain. First offer came from Real Madrid, second from Barcelona FC. Both transfer fees were close to £ 10 millions sum. I mean, one was £ 9 millions, second £ 30 millions.


    Journalist: Will you be going then?


    After long consideration and talks with my teammates I decided to stay where I’m now. Money is not everything. I’m pretty sure, Rangers offer me much better conditions for trainings. Everything I have here can’t be compared to some Barcelonas and Reals. Only here I can make step forward in my career.


    Journalist: We hear a lot about financial troubles at your club. How does it look like from your perspective?


    Niki:Well, many wrong opinions were said about my club already. Actually, we are not in troubles at all. Couple of months ago, people who were responsible for our club decided to change the spectrum of our own crowd. New motto of our club is: people who wore neckties are less aggressive, more cultural and guarantee dignity. I heard some of them were taxmen. Well, some of them were taxmen, some were other professions. Does it matter who they were?


    After fines from UEFA you can see that majority of those who visit our premises now are those who wear neckties. The way our club chose to deal with current situation makes us proud. We don’t expect any more troubles caused by our supporters. Would you expect tie men causing trouble? I’m sure you would not.


    Journalist: I hear opinions from your rivals, that the referees are not fair against them. I mean, your rivals complain that the referees don’t give them penalties and give many for your team?


    Niki: This is one of the most stupid things I have ever heard. Referees give us too many penalties? In the game we played one week ago I made a handball, and what? Where we given the penalty? When I complained to the referee he told me he was not ready to deal properly with the situation and maybe next time we can get penalty when the same happens. I was informed that moving from one penalty area to another penalty area, time needed for taking penalty would be too long. Next time when same happens TV broadcast is going to play advertising in that time, until I score from penalty spot.


    Journalist: But…. You know, you can’t get penalty for your team if it’s you who make handball?


    Niki: Let’s makes the Law of Game clear. The referees have doubts if the penalty should be given, or not given. Sometimes they are too busy to see all things on the pitch well. At the end of the day nobody but me can be sure if it was handball or not? If I’m asked next time about my handball I’m going to give clear answer on that and ask for penalty for my team.

  6. the long wait is over on

    Evenin’ all.



    That piece by Traynor is typically disgraceful and reminds me why I stopped buying the Record and Sunday Mail years ago.



    If it was a leader from a Rangers website it couldnt be more biased.



    Hard to know where to start with it but this sentence really grates.




    “It would be wrong, of course, to suggest he reached the top of the game only because he played for Rangers in an era where admittedly they recieved (SIC) more than their share of luck yet it did seem as though most of the lucky breaks went his way”



    Its the acknowledgement that in the past , in this case the pretty recent past , Rangers did get what is euphemistically called “more than the is share of luck” (known to you and me as Honest Mistakes) from people who will flatly deny it goes on still and who would have sworn on their children’s eyes that it didnt happen then.



    The same people who have daubed us , then and now , as paranoid.




  7. fatherandbhoy says:


    26 December, 2011 at 20:51



    I would not be suprised if this ‘was’ the first draft at the DR before being edited.




  8. Please stop commenting on the shit Awe Naw put up.


    Wasting your time.


    One of his enhanced pieces was discussed on RTC and ultimately made CQN appear unworthy by association.

  9. …PFayr says:


    26 December, 2011 at 20:40,



    and, Hamiltontim just after,



    What did you think of thee unknown ref v Killie?



    Hey, will open it up to everyone!

  10. McNair is the greatest on

    Jabba & most of the LL once the huns go t*ts up will lose their careers as DR & most of the other rags will be in mortal danger if no Huns to praise – most are running at a loss just now and another sizeable drop in circulation will kill them. Jabba will also be deemed to be complicit in the huns downfall once all the facts come out – his kowtowing to SDM. Imagine the FF permarage if they found out Jabba was an R.C.

  11. anyone one who thought that the article posted by Awe Naw was accurate wants to engage their brain while reading



    the DR is a cess pit of journalism but…come on …even they wouldn`t print such nonsense

  12. gallagher says:


    26 December, 2011 at 21:05



    Hopefully, we should have the league tied up by then!




  13. CT



    usual double standard refereeing and did his best to give Killie a sniff in the last 5 mins

  14. Amazed at how many have been taken in by Awe naws “draft” of Traynors article. I accept that he is a lousy journalist but do you really think he would admit to rangers getting lucky breaks from refs yet alone refer to Davis playing like a diddy? Go easy on the drink there lads for God’s sake will ye?

  15. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Listen Bhoys dont get comcerned about the rubbish fat Traynor writes hes is pandering to the knuckle dragging orcs we have our own great writers on CQN so a fat numpty like Traynor should just be ignored.Hes just like Keevins and needs to be constantly controversial in order to sell papers and his radio phone in only Orcs believe his rubbish.In Lennie we trust he has shown us he knows what hes doing and we are after nine in a row.H.H.

  16. ….PFayr says:


    26 December, 2011 at 21:08,



    Apart from that, I actually thought he was’nt bad.



    HEY, last five anywhere,



    Tis structured.



    But we won, AGAIN

  17. Mark \o/ McGhee's \o/ Eyeliner \o/ on

    Season’s greeting everyone.



    My thoughts on Wednesday’s game is that The Bhoys MUST win it.



    Not because our season depends on it, no not by a long chalk.



    Even if we lose or draw the game I believe we will still end up as champions.



    The Bhoys must win it for us, for our own selfish pleasure.



    I don’t need to tell any of you how good it will feel to go top at full TIMe.



    Paradise will be rockin’ to it’s foundations if we are a few goals up and the clock is ticking.



    So Bhoys go and win it for us the supporters.



    Go and win it as a big GIRUY to everyone who despises what we are.



    Go and win it for the Celtic Family.



    Hail hail




  18. Partizan



    Awe Naw has awenawed articals for as long as I can remember.



    I saw the post on rtc commenting on what he had said, with all due respect to the poster on rtc, if they couldn’t work out what he did, they only have themselfs to blame.

  19. Collum’s incompetence has been exagerrated by his desire to climb the greasy pole.



    He worries about the wrath of Ragers media and has seen what has happened to others who have failed to toe the line.



    Once he feels secure he will be less biased against us.



    Well, that is what I am hoping but sometimes once you have pawned your soul it is beyond redemption.

  20. iki



    Gollum has made the deal with the Devil


    He knows that he must perform they way his masters want him to or else all those cushy trips abroad at £4K a time goes west!



    Expect the worst on Wednesday


    We need to keep calm in the face of hun provocation and intimidation



    We need to stand up to the bully McCullough – watch him shrink like most bullies do went confronted


    PH had his number!





  21. TET


    I know it’s long-term and I fail to see the point of it. Leads to good posters posting about made-up things.



    Have to disagree. My memory of the RTC discussion was that it ended up with people generally less likely to want to read CQN as its all made-up drivel. However I sort of get your point that his “Awe Naw”ing is usually obvious.



    Anyway, agree to disagree, eh.



    Hail Hail.

  22. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo says:


    26 December, 2011 at 18:58



    Brilliant i’m killing myself here.. Merry Christmas. The worrying thing is that when you Awe Naw it you can still believe it was printed in the old media

  23. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Ive read about the team Neil must pick the formation we should play and what the players should do.However, what about us the supporters lets go to the match and lets bring on the THUNDER and let our team know we are 100% behind them let the orcs leave Celtic park knowing Neil Lennon has brought the THUNDER back and wishing that they could equal our fervour which we know they never can because we are Celtic supporters faithfull through and through and in Lennie we trust.H.H.

  24. Happy Boxing Day to you all! I hope Christmas Day was good to everyone!



    As a special gift, who can possibly beat the link below! (Well, probably half a Subbuteo team and some used Christmas crackers would beat it.)



    7,000 words on Gary Withey, Rangers’ Company Secretary, and his previous involvement with a football club takeover – with a bit extra thrown in about disqualifications, and finally a tenuous connection with Celtic from those previous events!



    Rangers’ Company Secretary + the Millionaire Disqualified Director, Thoughts Re Disqualification + a Tenuous Celtic Connection



  25. Come wednesday I’d go with…………..






    Cha Mulgrew K. Wilson Izzy



    Brown Wanyama Kayal Ledley Samaras






    Subs. Zaluska, Forrest, Ki, Rogne, Stokes



    It will not be easy and it will not be pretty, but I reckon we can get the 3 points we need to go top, and from there we will witness a long slow undignified fall from grace for the forces of darkness culminating in their voluntary slither into administration.



    We are all of us today the Celtic family, we are the pinnacle of cultural achievement in Scotland, and we shall prevail.



    HH and a happy festive period to all, and a title winning new year too!!




  26. The Spirit of Arthur Lee on

    Sober up ffs



    A celtic blog that now makes the mighty rangers a dangerous force.




  27. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo says:


    26 December, 2011 at 18:58



    How Ally can beat Celtic but will he listen ?



    Brilliant, and, no personal pronoun abuse!



    Yer Big Bro will be soooo proud :-)))



    Vorsprung durch technik :-)

  28. That Villa v Stoke match made a mockery of the beautiful game.


    Looked like the object was to run into a cul de sac and hang onto ballt as long as possible

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