Casino football, G.o.D.


When Ibrox legend Walter Smith issued a statement in June 2012 saying, “We wish the new Rangers Football Club every good fortune”, he no doubt hoped that one day the club would win a major trophy.  That happened yesterday, when Celtic lost only their second domestic trophy since 2016 and their first league in a decade.

Credit where it’s due, “new Rangers Football Club” have yet to lose a league game this season and are worthy winners.  Like old Rangers, they chose to play Casino Football, accumulating £86m in operational losses in their 8-year of financial history, while, as ever, Celtic live within their means.  There is not a hope in hell they would have won the league this season otherwise.

Notwithstanding this, Celtic can reflect on a season of unmitigated failure, and the feeling that they never asked a question of a team who famously bottled every opportunity to win a prize against full time opposition.  Had we got our act together, even as late as January, the outcome may have been different.

Today, the consequences of failure are ours.  We will explore the reasons at the end of the season, none is insurmountable.  The consequences of playing Casio Football are structural and also for a later date.  We got many things wrong this season but trying to live without our means is not one of them.

In January 2005, When Martin O’Neill’s Celtic were sliding below the water line before our eyes, I told you we were 5 years into a Generation of Domination (I was mocked and abused thoroughly for my trouble).  How spectacularly correct that turned out.  It was not a gambler’s hunch; it was the inevitable outcome of how Celtic and Oldco were corporately managed.

I know it’s difficult to step back and look beyond today’s pain, but this is not Self-Flagellation Quick News, I’ll leave that to others.  What was overwhelmingly evident in January 2005 remains so today.  21 years in, we are now in our second successive Generation of Domination (cue 2005’s blind reaction).  All that has changed is the weather, not the climate, so forgive me a lack of panic.


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  1. John Collins file under underachiever at Parkhead i echo the sentiments no thanks

  2. !!Bada Bing!! on

    DENIABHOY- he wasn’t liked,he’s only interested in himself, and would you employ a guy,who’s never done that job before? No….

  3. Tim green .Regarding EuanHenderson I personally don’t think he is going to make it at Celtic,been in the first team a few times ,and that’s about that ,His brother Liam should have been never allowed to leave Celtic ,as for another supporter asking me about selling McGregor I think he needs to move on isn’t the same player as for Christie you can’t fail him for his contribution he never stops running,for a while back he has been the whipping Bhoy ,he like a lot of the present players did suffer under Lennon and Co.

  4. garcia lorca on

    I attended the 1955 Scottish Cup Final versus Clyde and when I really concentrate I can clearly recall Clyde equalising from a corner in the last minute to take the game to a replay. My Dad took me along on the Wednesday afternoon to a drizzly Hampden and we lost 1-0. It was a long walk back to the Gorbals.


    The following year against Hearts we had a bizarre team selection and we lost another Scottish Cup Final 3-1. I recall leaving the North enclosure and the tremendous noise generated by Hearts fans as they received the cup. I was o ly a wee boy and it hurt.


    So on to the 1961 final replay again and this time a Jock Stein inspired Dunfermline beat Celtic 2-0. That was really hard to take because we completely dominated the game but failed to score and we’re hit with both a breakaway and cataclysmic defensive errors. I was really heartbroken.


    We made the final in 1963 and I witnessed the biggest mass exit of Celtic supporters either then or since. We were completely grubbed 3-0 by a rampant Rangers and the club seemed stuck in a more with no direction or leadership. Chants of “ easy,easy “ reverberated around Hampden. Another long walk back to the Gorbals ensued. Then in 1966 we had the calamity of the Kai Johansen final when. Elric played Rangers off the park only to concede a long range against the run of play effort and the cup was lost.


    In addition to these there has been a stack of League Cup final defeats, the Raith Rovers final ,Feyenoord in Milan and ,of course, Porto in Seville..


    It’s been that kind of day as I reflected on why I feel so angry about the current turn of events. I have been well used to disappointments as well as the highs of investing so much emotional energy in Celtic.


    The focus of my anger is Peter Lawwell . As CEO of our PLC he has to carry the main burden of blame for the strategic decisions which allowed an arrogant,entitled Rangers to emerge from the ashes of liquidation with all the ludicrous claims as same club,same history and all to preserve the Old Firm.


    The path I wanted to see Celtic take was to leverage the possibilities open to dominate Scotttish football and invest to build a European club. Peter Lawwell ‘s mindset so no further than losing his precious competitive Rangers . We have reaped what we sowed and he will always be remembered for that.

  5. Well thank goodness it’s officially over and we’ve been put out of our misery so it can’t mathematically be won at Parkhead.



    Two objectives for the rest of the season – get things sorted on the DoF/manager front for next season and win a game against them so they don’t match our unbeaten season. The latter is incredibly petty and parochial, but after this season I need something.



    So disappointing that it ended this way when it didn’t need to. We prevaricated when we needed to do something in October/November and, shockingly, since they beat us on 2 January, we’ve fallen further behind – from 19 points behind with 3 games in hand, to 20 points behind with none.

  6. SPIDEY101 on 8TH MARCH 2021 9:03 PM



    A lot of things to take from this season but one is not to count games in hand as points – “win our four games in and it’s only…..”

  7. I also hope John Collins gets the Dons job…………..



    ( might him and Roy share the gig? That’d be ideal!)




  8. squire danaher on

    GARCIA LORCA on 8TH MARCH 2021 9:00 PM



    Good post



    Cyber pint offered 🍺



    Many a time I walked back from G42 after unfathomable defeat, earliest including 1976-7 LCF, and TB red card 1978-9 LCSF.



    Felt bad at the time but I could always rationalise that we were beat by daft things in run of a game (76-7 LCF), and of course other ‘cultural’ factors v that mob on many’s an occasion.



    I never had the impression in those days though that we were passengers willing to sit up the back of the bus.



    Like now.

  9. Generation of Domination talk is self-soothing talk that will stop us taking the steps needed to get us acting more professionally.



    They’ve spent £85m in 8 years, so if we assume they have debt to that magnitude, it’s likely they see a break even in three years strategy as follows:


    1) next year qualify for CL group stage – say what you like about their quality, but two seasons of Europa League suggests that, unlike us, they won’t slip up against the likes of AEK Athens, Cluj, or Ferncvaros. They beat Galatasaray to qualify for the EL group this year – I’d wager Galatasaray are better than the three teams that put us out. That’s £30m paid off;


    2) “55” and “stopped the 10” merchandise will bring in a few quid;


    3) After the qualifiers, sell Kent, Morelos and one of their centre backs (probably Goldson or Katic) bringing in £15-20m. They have Roofe and Hagi to replace Morelos and Kent, and some guy from Bournemouth to replace Goldson.



    Spend c£5m on new players to boost the squad, and they’re half way to debt-free. Repeat again and done! Which they’d be confident about given our need to rebuild.



    We really need to get the finger out. With departures, we’re likely to be left with three goalkeepers who we couldn’t settle on this year; two fit defenders (Welsh and Taylor) with Julien crocked until God knows when and no right back (unless you count Ralston, which I don’t); a midfield of Forrest (assuming he’s properly fit now); Soro; Turnbull; Shaw (who is as likely to disappear into the reserves or end up at Dunfermline on loan as he is to be in our squad); and Mikey Johnson (who my 7 year old son could knock over); plus three strikers in Ajeti; Klimala andGriffiths, each of whom “split the support” (to be diplomatic (and that assumes none of the three want out of here).



    Not sure we can plan for a Generation of Domination when we are faced with struggling to put out a decent first 11…

  10. GeeBee



    “Win our games in hand…” those were the days, eh?



    Turns out our three games in hand were equivalent to a -1 point swing 🤦‍♂️

  11. Bhoyjoebelfast on

    BIG PACKY 1 @8.00:


    Long time since I watched it….and enjoyed again this evening.


    TIM HORTON@8.03:


    Paddy Crerand indeed a loss when he went to Manchester…although I was nicknamed willie Fernie by a bloke who lived nearby and attended the Celtic games.

  12. Player comments about Roy Keane at Ipswich





    – When asked about the out-of-work Keane in April 2011:



    “I’m not sure (if he will be a success), it depends on the group of players he has got. I think he will be more successful the higher up he is.



    “He demands the standards of Manchester United and when people don’t match those standards, he seems to have a problem.



    “He needs to be working at a higher level to be successful. If he tries again in the Championship or possibly lower, I’m not sure he will get what he wants from the players.”






    – When asked about working under Keane ahead of the East Anglian derby against Norwich in November 2010:



    “People have got entirely the wrong idea about the gaffer. They remember him as a player, when he was all about winning, and they automatically think he must be a bit of a madman in the dressing room.



    “I wish I could take some of our fans in there because they would be amazed at how he really is. Yes, we get the hairdryer from time to time but only when we really deserve it. He tells it like it is but certainly doesn’t rant and rave just for the sake of it.



    “He is actually quite calm most of the time and he is brilliant at taking the pressure off the players.



    “Far too much has been made of him falling out with certain players and moving them on. That happens at every club, just as players don’t always get on with other players all the time.”

  13. Further comments from Keane


    “I don’t think I’m a bad manager, but at Ipswich I managed badly,” writes Keane. “I spoke to some people like something on the bottom of my shoe.”


    The 43-year-old, now assistant to Martin O’Neill and Paul Lambert with the Republic of Ireland and Aston Villa respectively, adds: “I don’t f****** like blue. City were blue, Rangers were blue. My biggest rivals were blue. Is that childish? I couldn’t feel it.”


    If nothing else you just know who in our present team wouldn’t get a game under him

  14. Forget the players not liking him, John Collins is totally unqualified for Director of Football role.



    Fitness coach however……..



    Would address the most fundamental issue in our current squad.

  15. Garcia Lorca 09:00



    What a wonderful heartfelt post.


    You explain eloquently how you feel.


    I have the very same feelings.



    I would however hold Dermot Desmond to equal account ,as much as PL.



    He was happy for PL to do his bidding .


    Quite literally.



    Neither of them have any ambition for Celtic to become a great European club again.


    With fans like you by our side .


    None of us will ever walk alone.




  16. rpmcelticfan on

    31003 Do we ? who exactly ? Honestly the number of mind readers on this site is amazing ,

  17. John Collins was Director of football at Livi.



    Also managed at two clubs and assistant at us.



    Having standards in terms if fitness, isn’t a bad thing imho.

  18. Spidey101



    It’s worse than you think.


    They actually don’t have any debt.


    Their directors gave the club loans to pay off the debt.



    They then swapped the value of the loans for shares.




  19. SPIDEY101 @ 9:03.


    I know Lawwell lied, but I think you meant ‘procrastinated’ rather than ‘prevaricated.’😊

  20. What has John Collins done to be criticised on here ,good football player for us ,so why all the negativity about him,,one thing that came out when he was at Hibs was a lot of players couldn’t hack John’s views on there fitness,and I believe Michael Stewart was one of his biggest critics.

  21. MARTIM1980 on 8TH MARCH 2021 10:00 PM



    Having standards in terms if fitness, isn’t a bad thing imho.






    Couldn’t agree more, it’s been sadly lacking since Rodger’s left taking his backroom staff with him. Undermines everything we try to execute tactically.



    As Ronny’s assistant, he quickly exposed the likes of Commons and Stokes but weren’t given the backing to replace with quality.



    Didn’t realise JC was DOF at Livingston but would remain of the view that a year at Livingston doesn’t give him the experience required for the Celtic DOF role.

  22. 31003 on 8th March 2021 10:15 pm
















    I know what players wouldn’t get a game under him.







    Not really mate its your opinion , kind of goes against the point I think of your original post , which was we think we know someone from what we see on tv excreta , but we don’t know what they are like behind the scenes where it really matters , is that correct ?

  23. Some nice comments towards Roy Keane and it’s true we can never really know what a person is like behind the scenes.



    However, we can judge the results. His results aren’t good and for that reason, I wouldn’t want him anywhere near the job.

  24. RP



    I gave snippets of a newspaper article.


    I also listen to Keane on tv when he’s “punditing”



    What is am saying is, he wouldn’t suffer unfit players or no effort/trying/underperforming players


    From what I’ve seen of Celtic this season, contenders for that description, in my humble opinion, are as follows


    Any of the 3 keepers


    Latterly, Laxalt


    Obviously, Duffy


    Most of the time, Bitton, Christie, Elyounisi, Edouard, Ajeti and Griffiths


    Unless you’ve seen different, everyone of those players would be hairdryered and dropped on a regular basis

  25. RP



    Proper coaching is obvious.


    That wasn’t my point


    I’ve said all along our team lacks any kind of game plan/tactics, as do the players individually who look as though they’re left to their own devices and make it up as they go along.


    Laxalt a prime example against Dundee Utd


    He was in the right wing back position as much as his supposed left wing back position.


    My point was Keane would not allow that to happen. He wouldn’t play non triers or unfit players either. He wouldn’t play players who couldn’t carry out the job they’re meant to do.