Brown and Wanyama need to set stage


Fifa yesterday banned Benfica and Brazil central defender Luisão from all football activities until November for knocking a referee unconscious in a preseason game against Fortuna Dusseldorf in August.

Benfica didn’t expect Luisão to be available for tonight’s Champions League game against Celtic but the decision, coming a day before kick-off, will do nothing for morale.  While they lost midfielders Javi Garcia and Axel Witsel to Manchester City and Zenit late in the transfer window, it shouldn’t be forgotten that Benfica spent well over £20m this summer.  The new guys will no doubt eventually prove their worth, but right now they remain very much the new guys.  Celtic have to make them feel a long way from home tonight.

During our last successful Champions League group stage in 2007 we concluded that it was more important not to make mistakes at this level than to try to score the perfect goal.  If we get a solid performance from Scott Brown and Victor Wanyama in front of a defence which clears its lines and takes no chances, the stage will be set for James Forrest and Gary Hooper.  I expect both to hurt Benfica.

It was interesting to hear our chief executive take questions on the subject of EBTs and the health of our club yesterday.  More on this after the matter in hand has passed.

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  1. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on

    And if young Forrest wants to start a mexican wave, well I’m up for it.


    So when he throws his hand up in the air, I will be taking my lead from him,


    I think this might be more fun that moaning at him :o)

  2. Sorry, that was directed at Philvis.



    James Forrests post last night: brilliant.


    Loving the blog this morning.



    Didn’t say a thing to anyone at work about it till one person started taunting them, I stopped him, said I was gutted. It was terrible. Shocking. I backed QotS 2-1 ;)



    Bring on the Champions League. Here we go again!


    Too right Paul67, an organised team that keeps its head can do marvellous things with 60,000 tims behind them.

  3. Paul67, I think we are weak in midfield due to injuries, so I hope the players who get the call produce the goods, as always win the midfield then win the game.


    A one goal victory will do and a draw is no disaster.




  4. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on

    Brown must play right sided midfield, the celtral roll is a rubbish experiment thats went on too long.

  5. Early thoughts on the team.



    Forster is goals is a definite and I fully expect Commons, Brown, Forrest and Wanyama to start so that leaves a bit of playing around with.



    I would start Izzy and Matthews in the full-back positions and would play Rogne and Wilson at centre half.



    A strong midfield is needed and I would go with Brown, Wanyama and Mulgrew in the centre with Forrest and Commons supporting Hoops up front.



    When defending, Commons and Forrest should drop back into midfield giving us 5 accross the middle and when attacking both should help Hooper in a three pronged attack.



    We need to be up for the game from the start and I was pleasently surprised with how well we started at the weekend. Shame that only lasted for 15 mins but a similar start and if this is kept going throughout the 90 mins we have a chance.




  6. Son of Gabriel –



    Philvis – a-ah – saviour of the universe


    Philvis – a-ah – he’ll save every one of us




  7. canamalar



    Ideally Brown would be played on the right but there is little choice in midfield with Kayal and Ledley both injured and Ki sold.



    My midfield would be Mulgrew, Wanyama and Brown




  8. I’ve been thinking this.



    We all realise (eventually) how much Sammy will be missed tonight – the options limit us to an attacking midfield, so we need Brick67 to be on his game more than ever. If he is, we’ll get one or two goals courtesy of Commons’ edge of box shootin skills. If Hoops turns up, will be even better.



    But we need to replace the threat and fear that Sammy puts on opposition defences, and this will be done by attacking on both sides, using Commons and Forrest, who will be drawn off the wings into the middle. Cue the complaints about playing 4-2-4 when it will actually be 4-5-1…. <:O

  9. skyisalandfill – Ambrose seems really keen to play. Might free up Chaz for a more creative role.



    Interpretative dance?




  10. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on



    I’d have Paddy inside Brown, and either Commons or Forrest, not both.


    Paddys defensive and distribution is better than both.

  11. Hard times ——-



    Only 28k at the San Siro to watch Milan struggle to a 0-0 against Anderlecht .



    Milan were jeered off at half time



    Milan were jeered off at full time .



    Prince Boateng had a temper tantrum when he was substituted..



    Mexes gave the crowd the middle finger at full time..



    Milan have sold 18,276 season tickets . The figure for season 2009 -2010 was 59,197.

  12. Philvis: lmfao!







    How long till the rest of the team return from their respective injuries anyway?

  13. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire


    12:27 on


    19 September, 2012




    I’d have Paddy inside Brown, and either Commons or Forrest, not both.


    Paddys defensive and distribution is better than both.






    Apparently Paddy is injured(?) Was unaware of this myself, but read somewhere earlier this morning.

  14. Benfica may be missing a couple of players, but we are without Joe and Sammi – a huge loss to Celtic. I wouldn’t be unhappy with a draw, if we could then go and win and Moscow and make Spartak’s manager eat his words

  15. Champions League is no place for a debut for a CB I don’t think. We need to try and keep it as familiar as possible

  16. Son of Gabriel – True fact: Ming the Merciless was lined up as one of Charlie Green’s billionaire investors.



    But just because he’s from the planet Mongo doesn’t mean old Ming is slow on the uptake. Ming didn’t see how he was going to get his money back from the Yorkshire impresario, so he’s out. (thumbsup)

  17. I’d like to congratulate Sevco for taking a 3rd tier team to penalties last night. For a fledgling team to come within a whisker of one of the all-time cup shocks was no mean feat. However, I’ve heard a rumour that QoS are under investigation for dual contracts and Sevco may be reinstated. Apparently their ‘keeper is a brickie, a midfielder is a joiner and a striker is an electrician.

  18. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on



    is he back yet, or will they be bandaging up his heed and giving him a run out,


    has he got a stooky on his jaw

  19. jude2005 is Neil Lennon \o/ on




    Paddy wont play. Bench maybe and I mean maybe. Ive been very disappointed by him of late.



    He might play re Sami is injured. He keeps running inside and into traffic. Hit the space Paddy!! fgs

  20. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo


    11:30 on


    19 September, 2012



    Thanks for the ‘Ramsdens D’amour’…canny get it oot ma heid noo.

  21. Italian rumor mongers claim that Aiden McGeady will leave Spartak in the next transfer window .



    Some have him going to Aston Villa . Others have him going to Everton.

  22. news @ Chris McLaughlin BBC



    Lenny Murdoch has put an offer in for the Ramsden’s Trophy.



    Apparently these things are available to buy, by bidding on Ebay. He refused to confirm the name of his client, but BBC front line reporter Chris McLaughlin understands he is acting as representative of one Charles Green. More information on Charles Green to follow, but it is believed he is from Yorkshire.