My expectation is Den Bosch will be better than an equivalent second-tier Scottish team (any of whom would give us a game on a summer evening like tonight), so they will hopefully present a suitable challenge to help stretch the legs.
Most attention will focus on Dedryck Boyata, but no matter if he looks great, or lousy, you will learn nothing of his abilities tonight. For Dedryck the objective is to get the limbs and lungs moving, just as with his new team-mates.
I hear Saidy Janko (19) was spotted walking into Ross Hall Hospital this morning. Although known as a right back, Saidy can apparently play right side of central midfield and as a winger. While he’ll be the fourth right back in the first team squad, positional definitions aren’t what they used to be. At Celtic in particular, there’s often little difference between a full back and a winger (the former can hopefully tackle, the latter, less so). They both have a responsibility to make runs into the opposition box, and to track back and defend.
Reports this morning that Dundee United have agreed a £1m fee for Nadir Ciftci with Gary Caldwell’s Wigan will be more palatable to United fans than seeing another player agree terms with direct rivals Celtic. The fee agreed is within Celtic’s grasp, should they be sufficiently motivated to move for the player. After a rising through the ranks, Wigan have endured two relegations in recent years.
They still have Premier League parachute payments coming in, which explains the seven figure bid. It remains to be seen what Dave Whelan’s 23-year-old grandson makes of the opportunity, now he’s in day-to-day control. There’s an old Dutch proverb about families with money going from clogs and back to clogs within three generations.