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Celtic’s £10m game

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Win tonight and Celtic are guaranteed European group stage football of some description this season, which will be worth in the region of £10m, with the possibility of this rising significantly, should they subsequently beat Slavia Prague.

Around 50% of our income is determined this month; we are either a £100m club, or a £50m club.  How best to mitigate the downside of these variables is open to debate, but it is clear our competitive environment involves significant risk.  Group stage participation of any sort, with the added benefits of more testing games and Uefa coefficient points is crucial to the club.

Cluj manager, Dan Petrescu, will be inspired by the goal his team scored against Celtic six days ago, when they counter-attacked from a Celtic corner.  Playing on the break is a default position for many away from home in Europe, but Neil Lennon can be sure this what to expect tonight.

Celtic will have a more recognisable shape if Mikey Johnston and Hatem Abd Elhamed are fit.  Elhamed will liberate Kris Ajer for central defensive duties, while we might see (fully fit) Jozo Simunovic replace (still getting fit) Christopher Jullien.

Johnston is an absolute handful at the moment and could be crucial to the outcome.  Defenders often double up on him, creating space and opportunity elsewhere.  Boli Bolingoli also carries a particular burden, being the only left back at the club right now and on a yellow card.  We can scarcely afford to lose him ahead of next week’s playoff round.

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  1. ‘The most blindingly obvious example of hunnish intolerance on CQN comes from those who cry……..

     

    RACIST.’

     

     

    Naah… I think you’ll find that standing shoulder to shoulder with the extreme right wing of Uk Politics and the Orange Order is a far better example of hunnish intolerance.

  2. TIMALOY29

     

     

    I’m hoping with the wee snippets of news / updates on the right back and Johnston that both will make it.

     

     

    A back 4 of Ajer, Julien, Suminovic and BOLI BOLI ( Bluesbros) wouldn’t be to shabby.

     

     

    If Johnston doesn’t make it, it wouldn’t surprise me if Sinky gets a start.

     

     

    Worst part of the day waiting / apprehension, nerves building up.

  3. What is the Stars on

    A wise man once said…Jonny Hayes played his schoolboy football at left full.

     

    Not a lotta people know that..

     

     

    Just saying like

  4. P67 – regarding yellow card suspensions …

     

     

    51.02 In case of repeated cautions:

     

    a. before the group stage, a player is suspended for the next competition match after three cautions in three different matches, as well as after the fifth caution

     

     

    Bitton has 2 yellows while Boli, along with Ajer, Christie, Morgan and Simunovic are on 1 .

  5. Silver City 1888 on

    So we won’t be buying a left back even if we manage to progress to the last qualifying round of the CL with guaranteed Europa League group games.

  6. Nice article Paul,

     

    Can someone please help me here and point where my sums are wrong.

     

    We keep hearing about spending the £25 M as if we only had 2 bob in the bank otherwise.

     

    Here goes £38 M at the last interm report

     

    £9 for Rodgers and coaching staff that’s £47M

     

    £3M for winning SPL…. £50M

     

    £5M for reaching Europa group stage …..£55M

     

    £5M for Gate money in Europa run ….. £60M

     

    deduct £10M for transfers ….. £50M in the bank excluding Keiran’s transfer money

     

    what have I got wrong here.

  7. FRANK V on 13TH AUGUST 2019 12:58 PM

     

     

    I don’t think we will fail to spend it because we have so little in the bank.

     

     

    The reason is, the higher a fee for a player the less likely he wants to come to play in Scotland. There might be guys in the £15 to £20 million bracket we want to sign. They don’t want to play Hamilton Accies and St Mirren 3 times a year though.

     

     

    Gumny apparently has options to go to Serie A or the Bundesliga. It will be hard to convince him to come here.

  8. I’d also point out that the sources surrounding the Gumny, Meling & Taylor stories are all fairly flimsy. Don’t think you can get too excited just yet.

     

     

    McGowan in the Mail has been quiet.

  9. eddieinkirkmichael on

    Any other club with a chance of reaching CL group stages and sitting with circa £40m in the bank wouldn’t hesitate to spend £20m on a couple of defenders to enhance their prospects of qualifying.

     

    Unfortunately this is Celtic who are ran by accountants.

  10. MARSPAPA on 13TH AUGUST 2019 12:25 PM

     

     

    Aye, I also hope thats the team who steps over the white line tonight.

     

     

    We will see what Lenny does a LM. He preferred Hayes quite a bit last season but now MJ is favorite if everyone is fit. Morgan has played to little effect.

  11. Frank V – not to mention the millions that have been taken off the wage bill by the 12 or so players who have departed this summer.

     

    It seems strange, therefore, to hear Lenny saying he might have to move more players out before he can get others in. If that is what he has been told then I feel sorry for him. We have just had the biggest clearout of players in living memory.

  12. EDDIEINKIRKMICHAEL – more like 80 million in the bank. We received the KT money in one payment.

  13. TIMALOY29 on 13TH AUGUST 2019 1:06 PM

     

     

    Spot on about attracting players to Scotland. It’s not just down to finances.

     

    The SPFL is not seen as a competitive league and Scotland is not exactly a highly desirable place to in effect work for 3 or 4 years when England is over the border and sunnier destinations are not that far away.

     

    It’s not like buying players off the £10m or £20m supermarket shelf – they must want to play here for us and be happy with the financial deal and challenges on offer.

     

    Finding 10 £1m players could be relatively straight forward but 1 £10m player not so easy. Also at the moment some decent players are involved in qualifying matches like ourselves. We need bit of good fortune to get the quality we want for the price we can pay – not all that simple.

  14. “TIMALOY29 on 13TH AUGUST 2019 11:56 AM

     

    MARSPAPA on 13TH AUGUST 2019 11:50 AM

     

     

    `That’s the team most of us would play. Think its unlikely Johnston starts though.` ”

     

     

    I agree that`s likely to be the team most would but I would have Bitton instead of Simunovic.

     

    Nir, IMO, has been excellent and if Cluj play the way I expect tonight, Nir`s passing game could be important.

     

     

    JJ

  15. EMBRAMIKE on 13TH AUGUST 2019 1:20 PM

     

     

    Finding 10 £1m players could be relatively straight forward but 1 £10m player not so easy. Also at the moment some decent players are involved in qualifying matches like ourselves. We need bit of good fortune to get the quality we want for the price we can pay – not all that simple.

     

    ___

     

     

    Exactly. When we get turned down by a John McGinn, a Celtic supporting Scottish player, for a second-tier side in England alarm bells should be ringing.

     

     

    We can all have a go at our CEO for not getting a deal agreed with Hibs sooner but the fact remains, McGinn had the option to sign for Celtic before he went to Villa. Celtic matched Villa’s bid. McGinn made his choice and won’t have regretted it now he’s in the big time.

     

     

    If we can attract a player in the 6 or 7 million range that should be considered a marquee signing.

  16. Delaneys Dunky on

    Gumny and Meling are exactly the types of right and left backs that I would love us to sign. We could offer them highly increased wages, and sign both for a combined £10m. Gumny is a year to the day younger than Kieran Tierney and highly rated in Poland. Meling is 24 and stood out a mile last season against us. A far superior player than Taylor. Scandanavians and Poles usually settle well in Scotland. Hope the stories are true.

  17. Compare and contast these opposin views from Timaloy29 and Eddieinkirkmichael:

     

     

    Timaloy29:

     

     

    “The reason is, the higher a fee for a player the less likely he wants to come to play in Scotland. There might be guys in the £15 to £20 million bracket we want to sign. They don’t want to play Hamilton Accies and St Mirren 3 times a year though.”

     

     

     

    EDDIEINKIRKMICHAEL:

     

     

    “Any other club with a chance of reaching CL group stages and sitting with circa £40m in the bank wouldn’t hesitate to spend £20m on a couple of defenders to enhance their prospects of qualifying.

     

    Unfortunately this is Celtic who are ran by accountants.”

     

     

    JJ

  18. Mike in Toronto on

    DD

     

     

    What is it about you and Poles? They don’t even make the best perogies …. oh, yes, I did …. and they werent even created in Poland, they were created in the Ukraine … but, like all dumplings, can trace their origins to China.

     

     

    Trying to start the next great CQN debate … the perogies/dumpling debate …

     

     

    😆

     

     

    And, before anyone asks, no, I can not trace my origins to China😆

  19. i'vehadtochangemymind on

    sorry for banging on earlier macjay – I’m just back from a holiday – sister in law came – I lasted a week – did my head in. She is the most caring person in the world – took a break from 30 years of nurisng to go and work in a care home for the elderly – an amazing person but she lives 12,000 mile away in NZ, believes every stupid bassa she reads on twitter, defends trump (evil cnut who wants to make as much money as he can by any means) and is full of neo con made up horseshi* about brexit (evil cnuts who want to make as much money as they can by any means).

  20. I think it is very possible maybe probable that we will bring in a right & left back in the next couple of weeks but it is unlikely that they would play in the 4th round qualifier should we progress tonight.

     

    We go with what we have to try & qualify and we take it a game at a time,

     

    So it’s just a case of have we enough to beat Cluj, the answer to that is a resounding yes but it is most certainly not a given . They are well capable of scoring tonight so it could be one of those nerve jangling nights.

     

    There wasn’t a massive gulf between sides first day but on a better pitch in front of a passionate Celtic crowd, I expect us to win.

  21. Hot Smoked

     

    That’s the lifeblood of the blog ,- differing views on the same subject.

     

    Would be boring otherwise

     

    As long as it remains civil

  22. The hands cant hit what the eyes cant see on

    @ TIMALOY29 on 13TH AUGUST 2019 1:06 PM

     

     

    “The reason is, the higher a fee for a player the less likely he wants to come to play in Scotland. There might be guys in the £15 to £20 million bracket we want to sign.”

     

     

    There is a huge amount of speculation in this statement. What gives you the impression that we are contemplating such signings? We are a club that took circa 18 years to break our record transfer fee (Sutton to French Eddy – and I doubt we paid anywhere near £9m up front for Eddy). Our next largest recent signings are £7m for Jullien and then £4.5m for OE.

     

     

    I see nothing to suggest that we are actively looking to to double our record transfer fee but the stumbling block is that players don’t want to sign. You are filling in a blank (the blank being: why are we not spending more money given our vast cash reserves?) with a speculative and unlikely scenario.

     

     

    In a similar vein, I don’t think there is any credence in the argument that players are waiting for our European fate to be decided (CL/EL) before making a move. Each of our major signings in recent times signed prior to qualification for EL/CL: Sinky, Dembele, Ntcham, Edouard, Boli, Jullien.

     

     

    Frankly, we don’t need to sign £20m players to improve. We could make more modest signings to improve the quality of the team: it is not Jack Hendry for £1m or a £10m centre half; there are quality players in the brackets between.

  23. If it comes down to height in our fullback choice between Taylor and Melling …it has to be Melling , because he’s … Birger !!!

     

     

    Enjoy the game tonight lads ….

     

     

    COYBIG 3-1 The BHOYS :)))

  24. DENIABHOY on 13TH AUGUST 2019 1:17 PM

     

     

    My guess is that Ars wanted clauses on payments based on things that KT had no control over eg ECL participation etc. I still think there might be installments but I stand to be corrected.

     

     

     

    HH and 3 – 1 tnite

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