Club partnerships will be the next big story in football


I watched a few cup games on TV over the weekend, including the Exeter City-Liverpool and Hearts-Aberdeen games. There was a huge juxtaposition between the two Liverpool goalkeepers on show, Adam Bogdan (28), who had a nightmare for Liverpool against Exeter, and loan-ee Danny Ward (22), who was Aberdeen’s top performer against Hearts.

Within a day Jurgen Klopp recalled Ward from Aberdeen, who I’m sure will now become first deputy at Anfield. Six months ago Ward was not part of first team plans at Liverpool, who wanted Bogdan to be deputy to Mignolet. Ward took his chance, played in Europe and became a fans’ favourite at Aberdeen.

Without this loan, I’m sure Ward’s profile at Liverpool would be well below its current level. This is a great example of why you put players out on loan. Players sitting in the stands, or playing youth or reserve football, will find it very difficult to progress.

The other aspect of Danny Ward’s Aberdeen experience is that he was hooked back home after a live TV game. With the sheer number of players out on loan, I often wonder how much scrutiny of their progress parent clubs are able to deploy. Especially if it’s Celtic sending a player to Norway. It’s hard to escape the conclusion that Ward’s performance being on TV at the critical moment when Liverpool were pondering their reserve keeper position had a bearing on his career development.

For some clubs, appropriate scrutiny of players out on loan will be practically impossible (Chelsea list 30 players on loan at the moment).

If we extrapolate the way large clubs harvest players, there’s a good possibility loan players will make up the bulk of transfer activity across football going forward. Teams like Aberdeen should be using their Danny Ward experience to demonstrate what a good place they are for English Premier League teams to send players. I know a couple of years back there was some apprehension that one Scottish club were making inroads into Newcastle United’s misfits, but some cunning campaigning put paid to that.

All clubs need to learn how to feed off the squads of others, while managing the development of their own talent, not yet ready for a place in the first team.  Those who do this well will flourish.  Club partnerships will be the next big story in football, they will change the balance of power.  At the moment there is little discernible pattern to how and where clubs loan players.  This will change as clubs try to replicate the experiences of Danny Ward and Jason Denayer.  Partnering with others, both up and down the food-chain, looks like the biggest efficiency gain in the game today.

Delighted at the genuine anticipation ahead of our next Scottish Cup game, which will be against either East Kilbride or Lothian Thistle. It’s a great story for grassroots football, no matter if it’s played in the Lothians or Lanarkshire.

Anyone surprised that lot were hauled into court this week by someone else looking to be paid? What a way to run your business. We know how the story will end.

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  1. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    Barak Obama`s State of the Union address.



    Save your breath,Barak.



    In decline and deteriorating is the state of the Union.



    Thanks ,in significant part , to you who have achieved the near impossible task of being worse than your predecessor.

  2. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    SAINT STIVS on 13TH JANUARY 2016 12:26 AM


    link to mcaskell to jinty ? anyone ?



    poor jinty, she knocked back tony donnelly and now he lives with his maw, aff the fags, inviting anyone to the brazen so he can punch them.






    Nasty and childish.


    I wonder if the Celtic Trust value your support and perhaps inclusion.


    Surely they`d have to be better than that.

  3. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    ZBYSZEK on 12TH JANUARY 2016 10:52 PM


    The Green Man



    Regarding your comment about Che and his portriat at Celtic Park



    He is one of the symbols in pop culture in the West but in the region of East and Central Europe he is one of the symbols of Communism. You like it or not, Communism is responsible for millions deaths and for suffering of many more. One of the wrong opinions about Celtic is that this is Catholic club. The other opinion that I met about Celtic in this region is that Celtic is the club assosiated with the leftiests. Che symbols make that opinion valid for some.



    When it comes to the politics, I would like my club(s) to be found in no connections, assitiations. Absolutely zero that at all.






    Couldn`t agree more.



    All the more relevant from somebody whose country spent decades living under a communist Soviet boot.

  4. saltires en sevilla on

    Good morning fellow Celts



    Paying contracts on due dates.



    There is a be a good reason why failure to meet those obligations would trigger activity by governiing bodies.



    Not sure if that would trip a few switches for contractual bonus payments, or would need to be for basic/regular monthly?




    Especially in a sporting environment when notions of sporting advantage are finely balanced…




  5. Interesting lead from Paul67,



    Doesn’t fill my heart with joy though.



    Don’t get me wrong, there is a place for loanees at Celtic football Club… Craig Bellamy was excellent, he also got Celtic, all in all a great loanee.



    Fraser Foster, great player for us, significant factor in our beating Barca at home and brought in some much needed coinage to boot.



    But a partnership with other Clubs to take loanees I see as blinkered short termism at best.



    If we look at our flawed transfer policy as it stands…



    We bring in players, they excell, we sell them on.



    We bring in players, they fail, we slip them out the back door.



    We bring in players, they are okay, we keep.



    Right, so we end up with a squad of okay players with some notable exceptions, although even the exceptions don’t set the heather on fire.



    So we are looking at and delivering mediocracy, how does the loanee help us to improve?



    We bring him in he excels, his Club have him back or he is sold to a better resourced Club in jig time.



    They fail, they quietly go back to their own Club out the back door.



    They are okay, we get a deal and buy them.



    Mediocracy abounds…



    When we had Craig Bellamy we had a solid nucleus to the team, Craig enhanced that and we tried to put together a deal that would bring him to Celtic Park on a permanent basis, that didn’t work out, but because we had srength and depth in the team, he could slip in and enhance the team, then when he went there wasn’t a great hole in the squad.



    Jason Denyar on the other hand came in done a great job, we failed to secure his services on a permanent basis, then he left, he’s taken us six month to replace and even now we still miss him.



    Loanees are no way to build a quality squad at the level Celtic need. We need to have a transfer and player development policy and team cohesion plan to get us away from this mediocracy and get us to the level of a Malmo or Molde… Then we should start developing a squad worthy to wear the hoops.






    Hail Hail

  6. the glorious balance sheet on

    Chair bhoy 649 am



    Excellent points well made.



    I haven’t been on here much lately but I took yesterday’s blog article as a fairly strong indication that our transfer activity this window will probably consist of one or two loan signings who will be here today, gone tomorrow, and certainly by the end of May at the latest.



    So much for 2 transfer windows to prepare for Europe as was being espoused on here in the wake of the Europa wooden spoon being picked up last month.



    In reality it’s only one and a bit transfer windows anyway as the summer window is only open a matter of weeks before we are straight into European qualifiers.



    So January is a massive transfer window for us in my view.



    It’s a time to be building the foundations for this summer and also summer 2017’s European qualifying campaigns. Not a time to be sniffing around the Manchester development squads or the likes of sporting Lisbon for cast offs that can be picked up on loan and on the cheap for a few months, all misrepresented as “the fruits of a foresighted partnership which once again sees Celtic ahead of the game.”

  7. blantyretim is praying for the Knox family on

    Chair bhoy


    Good point confirming how we have gone backwards at an alarming rate

  8. Macjay



    What has St Stivs’ comment got to do with the Celtic Trust?



    Deary me, poor and lazy.

  9. antipodean red on




    At least Obama knew which end of the binoculars to look through, that gets him a tick in my world.

  10. antipodean red on

    Surely the next big story in football has to be the cleansing of the corruption, cheating and self-obsessed charlatans that have shamed the beautiful game for the past few decades?

  11. Got a chance there to watch the performance of both, Jeanette Findlay and, Paul Quigley from the FAC meeting yesterday. They were both truly awesome. When you think about it, the amount of hours that folk like JF and, PQ put in to try to get justice for football supporters. I’ve been saying for long enough that, Jeanette Findlay and her ilk should be directing Celtic Football Club.


    And, know what else ?


    All of this OBAF stuff would all have been so unnecessary if, Celtic’s board didn’t allow them selve’s to be cowed into a govt-summit after the shame game.


    That’s how all of this came about.


    Celtic directors and, Paul McBride QC were some of the architects of this piece of legislation which amounted to….the Celtic hierarchy saying to the SNP Govt….”go easy on us and, well sell out our fans to you.”


    That’s what the dirty bassas did!


    Campbell Corrigan was down on record as saying that the polis wanted to ‘smash the marxist Green Brigade!’….aye.


    The Celtic hierarchy jumped into bed with the establishment….cooking up a deal that would bring out the equalizing new law to take the bad look off the huns.


    So, by rights….should the celtic fans, maybe JF and PQ etc could / should have trained their guns on the board and spelled it out to them that – Celtic supporters are not criminals so, to that effect we will no longer be paying into Celtic Park until…..the directors apply all their legal capabilities to ‘undo’ what they did, probably from a position of intimidation….in short….fix it and, we’ll come back and pay in.


    Now, how long do you think it would have taken the billionaires to get the daftie law done away with ?


    The OBAF act is a sleekit entity, created by, deceitful, underhand, swivel-eyed-chancers who know fine well that their hedonistic lifestyles are gotten fron the fools gold supplied by a force of, innocent, well meaning Celtic supporters who’s naivety seems to know no bounds….which is the hardest bit to understand out of all of this great big masonic-orange-sleekit-kaliedoscopic-compendium of mind games designed to crush Timmy.


    Sack The Board.

  12. BLANTYRETIM @ 7:30,



    Thanks, totally agree, it’s as if we are in free fall and someone is going to give us the loan of a parachute that May or may not open.






    Thanks, your post is exactly in-line with my thinking…



    I can see no way in which this policy improves our chances of UCL qualification.



    In fact I stated after the Molde debacle – I too have posted little since then – that the Board would not trust Ronny with a transfer budget. The cynic in me says this proves my point.



    Hail Hail

  13. Chairbhoy




    Hail Hail fella.


    Celtic and loanees.


    Yer right some work well. some just don’t.


    Bellamy played some guid stuff and certainly connected with the fans.


    Robbie Keane scored a few goals but, for me….he was the wrong player to bring in and, the way in which he was brought in….right over BTM’s head when, he was looking for a CH…we lost the league on the night that Robbie made his debut for us at Killie…. I detected Karma that night…for DD’s interference, putting on display just how rudderless that Celtic really are.


    DD had previous for this interference as well when he brought in a ‘done’ Roy Keane…Clyde, bossed by wee super Joe Miller, put us out the SC on Roy’s debut…Karma for DD ?….seemed like it to me. Roy Keane and, Neil Lennon put in a brilliant performance at ibrokes when Magic Zurawski scored the winner. Through Keane and, Lennon….Timdom marched ont the ibrokes pitch that day…..that, was a guid Celtic day…imho.


    My favorit loanee was Big Ramon Vega…he was awesome…an, O’Neill hunskelper….my kind of player.


    I think that there are some decent players at Ronny’s disposal but, the interference would only stop if the manager was the type to be confrontational with….the interferers.


    But, only puppet managers will be employed by Celtic PLC….who, maybe are thinking along the lines of….


    …”We better close ranks at executive level…sook up all the gravy that we can coz, there is a storm coming…and, when the mibbery-assisted-huns come back….Celtic supporters will snap and…want change at the top of the club.”….maybe they are thinking along those lines…just like, all self preservation society’s do.







    ‘or ernie lynch’s view that their historical anti-catholicism is relevant in the modern era’







    I’ve never suggested that the SNP were ever anti Catholic. They had nothing against indigenous Scottish Catholics.



    What many of their founder members were against was Irish Catholic immigrants in Scotland.



    They regarded Irish Catholics as being a separate, inferior race who would undermine and threaten the purity of the Scottish race.



    Similarly they had nothing against Protestant immigrants from Ireland, on the basis that they were part of the Scottish race, ‘blood of our blood, bone of our bone’ as it were, which of course is the phrase Salmond used more recently to describe the people of NI.



    That sentiment is still there within strands the SNP, albeit diluted and hidden. Nowadays they wish to be all things to all people, and to be fair to them, they have been remarkably successful at conning people. So far.

  15. KEVJUNGLE @ 8:15 AM,



    Hope you are well and your health issues are behind you my friend…



    Yes the loanees have been quite a mixed bag, but we’ve seen some quality and some players that have longed to pull on the hoops and probably would have been unable too without a loan.



    Thanks for the memory of Roy and Lenny at Ibrox, that was a joy to behold.



    This current policy of partnership loanees I see as different.



    As you say, I would very much doubt if it’s a football management decision, the manager will be wanting permanent players he’s identified that he can work with over the medium to long term.



    Here today, gone tomorrow players as TGBS puts it, are not going to give us the consistency we’re so badly lacking.



    Hail Hail

  16. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    HAMILTONTIM on 13TH JANUARY 2016 7:30 AM





    What has St Stivs’ comment got to do with the Celtic Trust?



    Deary me, poor and lazy.








    Actually I`m neither.





    Is he not a regular supporter of same on C.Q.N.?


    You`ll correct me if I`m wrong.


    I`m sure.

  17. Chairbhoy on 13th January 2016 8:37 am




    Thank you for yer guid wishes, I go back to hospital in March…we’ll see then…I’m too long in the tooth to count my chickens but, like the last time….the waiting for the results is nerve shredding.


    Will cross that bridge when I come to it.


    Back to the Celtic….it seems that the present policy is akin to twiddling their thumbs till the huns come back.


    I know that this sounds daft but, I don’t think that the Celtic hierarchy appreciate the level of evil that is coming down the track.


    I don’t think that we have the personnel deployed at ‘any’ level of the club to take on this force of evil-darkness.


    Going out – take care fella.



  18. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on






    At least Obama knew which end of the binoculars to look through, that gets him a tick in my world.





    Europe`s in chaos .


    Russia is indulging in military expansionism.


    China is creating landing strips close to the Spratleys to control a huge portion of the trade passing through the South China sea.



    Obama`s making Trump look electable.



    Where`s your world?

  19. Macjay



    Yer comment was :-)



    I’ve read many posts by Stivs over the years, I don’t think a high proportion have been related to the CT.

  20. Chairbhoy



    Most of our loanees have made little impact and departed before they were noticed (Braafheid, El Khadourri, Brozek, Gershon etc;). Fraser Forster and Giorgios Samaras were far from mediocre signings but we landed both after a loan. I would also acknowledge that Robbie Keane boosted the team when he came and he was one of the few blameless players in the surrender of that particular league to the deid club and their MIB mates. He, certainly stands alongside your Bellamy example in playing well in a team that, ultimately, lost the title.



    The best that can be said about the loan system is that, in contrast to the dud signings, the effect of having dud loanees on the books is less permanent in terms of writing off cash from the books. I am not aware that N’guemo, Kamara, or Wakaso, as examples, put in less effort or were less effective than Amido Balde, Pukki, Boerigter, Rasmussen or Fridjohnson but we will have taken less of a bath on them. Imagine if we had had to sign them all.






    ernie lynch



    I appreciate the clarification. Any one line summary of mine is likely to do an injustice to your position and Neg Anon’s differing stance.







    “That sentiment is still there within strands the SNP, albeit diluted and hidden. Nowadays they wish to be all things to all people, and to be fair to them, they have been remarkably successful at conning people. So far.”



    I am not sure on your first sentence. If it IS there, then it is not hidden, since you have detected it. I concur with the last two sentences more. I think they have failed to take action against OO parades because they see it as a vote loser, rather than as an expression of solidarity with their 6 counties brethren. They are a populist party who will promote policies that gather support, and, putting the boot into those dreadful football people with their “Ulster sectarianism” on both sides, has played successfully in so-called Socialist, progressive Scotland. They will equally back away from policies and legislation that requires bravery and may lose votes. Having seen what happened to Glasgow Labour Authority, the only group that attempted to take action to reduce OO parades, they have been careful to involve the OO’s pet professor, Dr. Morrow, to ensure that those decent church going folk do not suffer any action from the SNP. And, it has, thus far, played very successfully, even amongst our own fans.



    I am into work now- will catch replies later

  21. KEVJUNGLE @ 8:51 AM,



    Well good luck with that, many will be saying a wee prayer for you…



    You go to the Monklands don’t you? I was born there… In ’62, now how did I manage that;-?



    Yes, I’m going to keep my powder dry to the end of the transfer window but if we haven’t shown any ambition by then it will prove you are correct. Celtic FC PLC are looking only at a Glasgow derby to set their competitive level.



    We’ll see…



    Take care.



    Hail Hail

  22. ernie lynch on 13th January 2016 8:31 am



    That’s the 1st time I’m aware of you correctly stating that Salmond’s ‘blood of our blood’ quote was about all the people of NI. Given that it was made in relation to us sending water to help them.




  23. antipodean red on




    I don’t know about my world but it’s not too long ago that you were promoting the three Jesuits, Abbott, Hockey and Shorten on here, the Three Stooges more like.


    On Obama, I think you might have to look a wee bit farther back to those other visionaries who promoted the “Project for the New American Century”, we are well and truly into it now and I doubt Obama had very much to do with it. God help us, those guys don’t even want to help their own sick and infirm, so what makes you think that they are capable of dealing with China, Russia or Europe?




    ‘If it IS there, then it is not hidden, since you have detected it.’






    It bubbles to the surface occasionally, like for instance Billy Woolfe’s comments about the Falklands war and The Pope’s visit.



    The guy obviously had some seriously weird views that had apparently gone unnoticed during all those decades he’s spent working his way to the top of the SNP. Mmm.



    On another note I see that some analysts are predicting oil could fall to $10 a barrel. It’s sobering to think that if the referendum had gone the other way we’d be two months away from independence.




    Yes I’d agree with all of that, of course having duff loanees on your books as opposed to duff permanent players are certainly better… We still have Boerigtter hanging around:(



    But by the same token, we helped develop players like FF, Wanyama and Van Dyke and got our just desserts, this is not going to happen with successful loanees, we will simply be giving back that quality of player and no doubt, as with the other guys, they will be a fulcrum in the team and very difficult to replace.



    My other point would be, an old bone of contention of mine… The resources we put in to secure the player, manage him, coach him, Doctors and physiotherapy time etc etc… We are told constantly we have finite resources yet we spend a lot of precious time and money on players that never make regular first team squad members.



    It comes down to identifying and developing players of the requisite quality, I know it’s easier said than done but fholk are getting paid large salaries to do just that. We need to get better at it.



    Short term partnership loan deals are not the answer IMO.



    Does anyone really think they are? Or are we treading water, waiting till when we can move the manager on and a competitive Glasgow Derby returns?



    Hail Hail

  26. Looks like we’ve been linked with a midfielder at City. He played under Ronny in Norway.



    As I’ve said before, I don’t believe we need to sign anybody until the summer. I’d like some more quality in the wide areas but that would mean putting GMS and McGreggor out on loan.

  27. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on







    COSYCORNERBhoy – thanks … did I wish you a happy Birthday yesterday .. any way happy Birthday again just in case



    TBB – Very good .. does not look like Ronnie is learning. A day after your email and he can´t spell his name right ?? … Yes but we all knew about JC when he left for Monaco










    Thank you guys for the Birthday wishes




  28. bluegrass celt on

    Ernie. Oil revenue was always a bonus, not a basis for guaranteed financial stability. SNP surge for independence was a stepping stone for being released from the clutches of Westmonster and continually being fed crumbs as a poor neighbour. Look to the Norwegians for perfect example for how to utilise what resources we have with the size of population. An independent Scotland would have forged our people together and would have been a chance to break down barriers and come out the 17th century. What party would lead us? Who knows but at least they would no longer be following a Westminster agenda. Too many No voters couldnae see past their contempt for SNP to finally give us Scots a chance to drag our wee bitter world into the present and give hope to future generations.

  29. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on







    I don’t know about my world but it’s not too long ago that you were promoting the three Jesuits, Abbott, Hockey and Shorten on here, the Three Stooges more like.





    Nice change of subject. From Obama to Abbott et al.





    You say promoted?


    Shorten is the current leader of the Australian Labor Party.You don`t seriously think I would be promoting him.


    The three were Jesuit educated and I thought it was an interesting observation. That`s all.



    If Europe had learned the success of Abbott`s policy in stopping the boats,after five years of Labor`s open border policy which fpromoted.the people smugglers,then far fewer drownings would have occurred and are still occurring.



    Kudos to Tony Abbott.

  30. Chairbhoy



    Loan deals are a useful tool.



    It gives us access to talented players at low risk. As you say, we don’t receive a big fee for development but we don’t attach the same risk.



    I genuinely believe that Ronny has favored loan deals because he wants to save his budget for players he really rates.

  31. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Morning Bhoys.Well we are being linked with another player on loan from Man.City did Ronny not say at the start of this window no more loan players for him ? There doesnt appear to be any real movement in the transfer market at the moment and although I would like to see Celtic have a good clear out before bringing anyone else in if no one wants your players you are stuck with them ie.Boerichter etc.H.H

  32. I find it difficult to get attached to loan players,i support anyone who put the jersey on,but we are usually getting guys fit to go back to their parent teams.

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