Betis, late nights and game time


Granada drew their first two league games of the season (away to 10 man Villarreal, home to Valencia) before losing by four to Rayo Vallecano, so I did not hold out much hope they would tax Real Betis last night.  Betis battered them, but it took 89 minutes of effort to score the winner.

The game finished around midnight local time, so even if Betis delayed their homeward journey until today, it would have been a late and exhausting night.  69 hours after full time, they kick off against Celtic.  I don’t expect to see hands on hips after 20 minutes, but any port in a storm……….

Betis have now played four competitive games this season, not a lot of game time.  Our fourth competitive game was Jablonec away on 5 August, we have played eight subsequently and have five rest days since what was a straightforward win over Ross County.

Celtic have never won a competitive fixture on Spanish soil (even if you include Gibraltar!), we should be in no doubt the odds we face, but if there is a good time to go to Spain, it is in the first group game.

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  1. In my opinion, the biggest threat to us on Thursday will come from Nabil Fekir, Betis’s No.8. I’ve been watching him since Moussa moved to Lyons. Fekir was the Lyons team captain and he just about controlled every game. He trots around the midfield in a large circle and wins or receives the ball and keeps his team on the attack. He also presents a goal threat. He’s not that tall and lacks a bit of pace but he’s strong on the ball and is good at beating opponents in tight positions inside the box.



    Canales is also a danger. He’s a good player and regularly has an attempt at goal and is involved in a lot of the action. The only other player who caught my attention in the games I watched recently is their right wing back who got forward a lot and had a lot of attempts at goal.



    I think we can get something on Thursday night. They don’t strike me as being a really top team.




    I remember S Canales was once a Royal Madreed wonderkid who never really fulfilled his expected place in the game and had serious injuries. He went out on loan and made a career for himself. Still a hell of a player.



    So is Fekir.

  3. CHAIRBHOY on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 1:44 PM



    Well said.






    The attack dogs on here are really tiresome whenever anyone dares to question the Board. Their posts tend to be heavy on the lowest form of wit but light on any constructive form of debate.

  4. Fed up hearing about Brendan being a rat – had the balls to tell our dysfunctional suits what Dom told them.


    MM at 12.21 – If I were Dom MacKay I’d have that on my resume.

  5. BSR @ 2:12 PM,



    Great example.



    That illustrates my point… No mistake there, largish or otherwise;)




  6. AIPPLE on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 2:20 PM



    I would certainly hope that those stats, from our first four league games, follow us to the south of Spain on Thursday night.

  7. My issue with Ross Desmond being involved in multi million pound Celtic deals is that he has no role at the Club.



    The major shareholder getting his son involved in transfer business points to a corner shop mentality.



    Talking about how successful the window was or how challenging it was doesn’t really excuse non accountable outsiders meddling.



    Hire a head of recruitment, hire a football director, hire professionals that are accountable.



    Let’s leave the part time meddlers free to interfere in daddy’s other businesses.

  8. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Went to a party once.


    (It was free to get in).



    Chatted to a few people but the party wasn’t what I expected



    … and I didn’t really enjoy listening to the host.



    … so I left.

  9. Tom McLaughlin @ 2:05



    “In the last few days of the transfer window, Celtic were negotiating the transfer out of 3 players – Edouard, Christie and Griffiths. At the same time they were working on several incoming transfers, three of which were concluded on the final day, one in the final half-hour.


    For you and other posters to expect Dom McKay to have done all this without any assistance from other Celtic people beggars belief.”



    This is a really important point. The recruitment, negotiations, contact, liasing with our own board etc is a huge undertaking.


    You quite rightly point out that it’s unlikely Dom could have done this on his own.


    Dom is now away.


    Who the frig will perform this role now?


    We do not appear to have a professional football depth at all.


    Suggestions that key stakeholders family members are providing ad hoc support is just bizarre.


    We need a fully functioning footballing operation. From top to bottom.

  10. dermo has 3 sons,



    brett, ross and derry,



    derry is short for Londonderry which is believed to be an appeasement to his leanings towards a fine old club in glasgow, that he needs to keep going to keep his fortunes afloat.



    he is down to his last 2,4 billion.



    such failures.




    In my opinion Brendan didn’t tell anyone anything. He sneaked out the back door and never even bid his players farewell. Brendan was thinking of himself his biggest influence on his career.



    I think that the majority of Fans are not either Board Loyalists or Critics it tends to be a grey area. For example I admired a lot what Lawwell did in his 18years, however, Dubai was a major error, Bankier has never impressed me in any way. Tom Allison is a big Hitter and would have been a better Chairman but I feel he didn’t want the job. Brian Wilson was a cabinet Minister and knows the Political scene well but i think is a bit old now and maybe out of touch. Desmond I dont know but I don’t like what i have heard. He’s also too old. Michael Nicolson deserves support as he has shown loyalty to the club.



    So In summary, my opinion is mixed on the Board. Some good some bad. I think we do need a new ownership model.

  12. Chairbhoy,



    Paul 67 I am disappointed in the personal smear of Dom McKay without any details or substance. Of course he can’t defend himself.



    I get you are loyal to Lawwell and the incompetent board —- however no need for the character assassination. I suppose it shows how desperate they are when they put you up to this dirty game.

  13. LUCKY CODY @ 3:02 PM,



    You know this is a very sad state of affairs. Its the way these people work who think of themselves as good Celtic people but act in this manner as if it was matter of fact business practise.



    Despicable really.



    UNCLE JIMMY @ 2:53 PM,



    The greater question to ask is, who has the expertise…



    We need to identify the positions that need filling



    We need to identify suitable players of the correct calibre and fit



    We need to ensure the contracts are solid equitable but a win win



    We need to ensure the financial side of the deal is right



    We need to consider the short term requirements and longer term strategies



    Quite an undertaking with the missing expertise.



    I’m sure we have moved on from leaked transfer document embarrassment, but not very far by the looks of things.



    The fact that the CEO pulled together a decent transfer window is testement to him and all those involved.



    Now let’s get some personnel in and put proper structures in place to ensure it is done in a professional and timely manner.



    Hail Hail

  14. SAINT STIVS @ 3:01 PM,



    I’m sure THEORIGINALSADIESBHOY @ 2:33 PM, will be grateful for your fine example;)



    Hail Hail

  15. Chairbhoy,



    Agree. The golden rule never wash your dirty linen in public.



    DD/Board have dismissed Dom McKay the added extras from Paul67 is from a business perspective unethical. The Board member who requested / advised / instructed Paul67 to do this should resign. How can we go forward if this is the type of individual that plays a key role in leading the club.



    Unless Paul67 was playing Enid Blyton…

  16. CHAIRBHOY on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:17 PM


    SAINT STIVS @ 3:01 PM,







    I’m sure THEORIGINALSADIESBHOY @ 2:33 PM, will be grateful for your fine example;)







    Hail Hail






    I am not following, explain please or I will post something factual and dermo and co.

  17. Thinking about the game on Thurs and based on my first hand viewing of Rogic, McGregor, Turnbull on Sat (plus previous games on TV); i don’t think Turnbull and Rogic should play together in Euro away game.



    Both are highly gifted technically but the pace and work rate will be below the opposition in most cases.


    As such, I think McCarthy has to come in



    I though Ross County made more chances than we have highlighted here or the TV highlights showed. Was never a 3-0 game. Juranovic was beaten or out of position several times.



    Big Cameron looked the part but Starfelt made a few bad choices ; I actually think he played well in games we lost but got away with it on Sat.



    I don’t think Forrest is ready to start so :





    Ralston Carter-Vickers Welsh Montgomery


    Turnbull McCarthy McGregor


    Adada Ajeti Jota

  18. LUCKY CODY @ 3:22 PM,



    Auldheid wrote a comment about “probity” yesterday (I’ve just caught up), yet we are talking of something way beyond that here – the black arts have no place in any professional run organisation.



    SAINT STIVS @ 3:26 PM,



    Ok – No one is questioning Dermot Desmond’s ability to make money, nor Brett’s taste in women for that matter… They are a given…



    Hail Hail

  19. SAINT STIVS on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:34 PM


    a blow to the supporters clubs on the island





    if they had built it, I think weather would shut it constantly and imaging the hold ups on the A83 with trucks and buses.


    Plus all the checks on trucks due to the Protocol



    Nice idea though and would have saved supporters buses a packet by eliminating the ferry fare. I was €430 to take a car over recently




    Groupthink is for the feeble minded.

  21. CHAIRBHOY on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:41 PM



    ‘Ok – No one is questioning Dermot Desmond’s ability to make money’






    Though it is worth pondering whether the particular strategies and skills he employed to make his money are in any way relevant or appropriate to his de facto ownership of Celtic.




    Talking after one game this season, before the transfer window closed, Strachan was asked by Sutton how many players Celtic needed. Strachan said “2”, to which Sutton scoffed.



    Since then, we bought Hart, Carter-Vickers, Jota, Juranovic, McCarthy and Giorgios.




    Where would we be if we had listened to Gordo?




    To be fair to GS, he said “2”, I presume, meaning additional to what we had at that time.


    Since then, we parted ways with Edouard, Christie, Griffiths….just saying ;-)




  23. ERNIE LYNCH on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:51 PM


    CHAIRBHOY on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:41 PM







    ‘Ok – No one is questioning Dermot Desmond’s ability to make money’














    Though it is worth pondering whether the particular strategies and skills he employed to make his money are in any way relevant or appropriate to his de facto ownership of Celtic.






    wait till he passes on ownership to his boys,

  24. The La Liga season is 4 games old and so far Real Betis have drawn 1-1 away and home to Mallorca (who were promoted) and Cadiz (12) respectively, lost 0-1 away to Real Madrid (2), and most recently recorded their first win away 2-1 to Granada (9). Last season’s finishing positions in brackets.



    In the three “easier” games (excluding R Madrid) they have dominated possession (66%, 75%, 57%), and made far more passes than their opponents (568 v 288, 648 v 208, 492 v 359), with passing accuracy also consistency better (88% v 77%, 89% v 61%, 83% v 78%). Granada appeared to give them a tough game as they recorded their lowest stats in the three areas above, while Granada’s stats represent the best of their opponents. The only area of this game which indicates significant dominance is in shots/on target, where they recorded their best stats of the four games (19/9). While it also appears they gave R Madrid a decent game, achieving close to parity on all stats.



    Interestingly despite their possession dominance they regularly out-foul their opponents, for example they managed to foul the Granada players twice as often.



    Last season they finished 6th, a point off Real Sociedad and 3 ahead of Villareal, and with a goal difference of zero. The goal difference is unusual for a team finishing 6th in a 20 team league. As you’ll know the aggregate GD across any league is zero (for every goal scored there’s one conceded), so ordinarily you’d expect the zero GD teams to feature around mid-table. This is again another high scoring team who aren’t afraid to concede a few goals, suggesting they often lose heavily but win by a single goal. Did they ride their luck last season?



    Speaking of which, last season was their joint highest finish since promotion in 2015, their previous two finishes were 15th and 10th. Before which (in 17/18) they again finished 6th which resulted in their last Europa league qualification in season 18/19 in a group with Milan, Olympiacos and F91 Dudelange (no, me neither). They performed pretty well amassing 12 points including an win away to Milan, and proved a difficult team to beat. However they were eliminated in the first knockout round against Rennes, losing 3-1 at home and drawing 3-3 away. Of course later the same year Celtic would record two impressive results against the same team.



    This is a good team of players, as others have pointed out Fekir for example was a well regarded player while at Lyon, and was highly coveted by Klopp at Liverpool. However their European experience and confidence as a group is limited, and they’re coming off a pretty difficult start to the season against below average opposition (R Madrid aside) which will have shook their confidence and made them re-appraise priorities. Facing them in the opening game is a potential plus, as the first European games often throw up a few surprises. If Celtic can manage Betis’ possession and keep the score down into 60 minutes or longer this game will be tighter than the odds might suggest.

  25. Mods.


    The copy paste function on CQN is impossible to use because of pop up adverts on mobile phone.


    It resulted in a full page being posted which I’m glad to see has been put in moderation so please delete. I’ll try later from laptop but I have to say adverts make CQN technically dysfunctional

  26. ERNIE LYNCH @ 3:51 PM,



    Well, in many ways this is the 64 Billion Dollar challenge…



    As DD indicated himself – Celtic would not be considered a good candidate as an investment for his “particular strategies and skills”



    I’ve often said DD is in Celtic in the main for the big pay day – e.g. Celtic in the EPL.



    What to do in the meantime…



    Get serious about Football and try to make Celtic the best they possibly could be






    Tread water, put in risk avesre policies, with strategies that bolster and steady the share price and underpin it with a robust monetary policy.



    The former requires bravery, dedication, expertise and huge commitment (though not necessarily from DD himself).



    The latter is basic business tenets that could be monitored and controlled easily from a quay in Dublin.



    On occasion he has foraged into the former, just to show he can do it if he wants. But he has really gone for the latter. As the scorpion once said it’s my nature.



    SAINT STIVS @ 3:55 PM,



    Our best hope is…



    He does and they have genuinely caught the Celtic bug…



    Hail Hail

  27. What is the Stars on

    For a blog thats supposedly controlled by Lawwellites and happy clapping back of the bus sitting board apologists it seems to be that most of the posts are of the malcontent whinger variety.


    And thats not a recent thing either.Its been constant ,all through our 9 in a row and quadruple treble some disturbed souls would bang away on their keyboards screaming to heaven to get rid of the dirty rotten scoundrels that run the club.


    Chief target of course was Peter Lawwell….who although no longer in situ is still the main target of the ire as (lets face it everybody knows) he is still running the show ..



  28. GINGERNUT on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 9:32 AM



    AULDHEID on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:28 AM



    No. I’m saying I could not work with people with no probity.



    No one can, not without losing their self respect.



    You have already done so, closely, during the Res 12 fiasco.




    What do you know about the Res12 fiasco as you call it to reach that conclusion?



    Bringing folk who lie to you to account is a sign of self respect.



    Accepting being lied to and crawling away is the opposite as is continuing to support the liars.

  29. What is the Stars on

    Saint Stivs



    Though it is worth pondering whether the particular strategies and skills he employed to make his money are in any way relevant or appropriate to his de facto ownership of Celtic.



    His political connections probably had more to do with his “business success” than and natural talent/entrepreneurship

  30. WITS and Auldheid,



    Many thanks for your recent posts. Restored my belief in the genuine Celtic supporter.



    How so many on here ever get to enjoy Celtic beyond me. Maybe it is an age thing and I grew up when the Kellys and Whites ran the show.

  31. SAINT STIVS on 14TH SEPTEMBER 2021 3:55 PM



    wait till he passes on ownership to his boys,





    History does have a habit of repeating itself and a return to the old family nepotism days is not out the question. Now into his 70’s, DD will have an exit strategy. The EPL dream has long since sailed off into the sunset.


    Are we heading down the road where DD is held in the same esteem by Celtic fans as Newcastle fans hold Mike Ashley ?



    On the plus side, Five Guys burger ‘n fries on sale at CP, £9.99 (but sauce is free).

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