Dukla, the tragedy and opportunity of the east


Celtic went into the home first leg of their European Cup semi-final against Dukla Prague at 1-1.  Two second half goals from Willie Wallace added to Jimmy Johnstone’s opener were enough to ensure a British team would eventually reach the final of Europe’s premier tournament.  The return leg finished goalless.

The clubs met 14 years later in the Feyenoord Tournament, when two first half goals from Murdo McLeod secured a 2-1 win.  Since then, European football has been robbed of its meritocratic principles, which allowed talented clubs a route to the top, no matter how rich or poor their domestic TV contract was.  Nowhere has been so brutally robbed as east/central Europe.

The 1960s-through-80s saw teams from Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Yugoslavia and Poland regularly dominate clubs from Scandinavia, south-eastern Europe, France, and occasionally, all comers.  Eastern Europe remains one of the world’s most productive areas for developing talented footballers, but even the average ones are stolen for a pittance while still in their teens.

In the 60s, Dukla were a genuine leading light in the game, producing seven of the Czech team who collected runners-up medals to Pele’s Brazil in the 1962 World Cup, with peerless midfielder, Josef Masopust, picking up the European Player of the Year award that year.  They would have fancied their chances against Celtic in ’67.

Where great tradition and sporting affection exists, so too does commercial opportunity.  The people of east/central Europe just need to figure out how to harness it.  Uefa are Europe’s maker of competitions.  Their job is to establish the structures which allows great and successful sport to take place.  A modern-day Jules Rimet is needed.

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  1. Jude.











    Modern Day Hai Karate ad………….!





    19:01 on 11 July, 2014







    As I sat in a lovely Gourock bistro today, sipping an ice-cold Peroni while gazing over the azure sea to Dunoon, I couldn’t help wondering how you could ever have left Inverclyde.



    Then, on the way home,as the traffic lights turned to green for go on the road through Greenock, a local character objected to me being on the road when he wanted to be there, threatening to lob his Buckie bottle at my wheels.



    I didn’t panic though. . . ,there was still a moothfae in it.




    that’s why I read this site.!!!!!!!!

  3. All I can say is I felt sorry for the locals who turned up that is an hour and a half they will never get back. Celtic had the bulk of play but Dukla played deep as if they were holding on for the penalty shoot out. Nothing lost nothing learned. My only concern is that one would imagine that the starting line up is the one Ronny has in mind for Iceland.

  4. Kayal not very good in my opinion, though defensively he was OK and didn’t go lunging in. Biton looks better, a better passer of the ball.


    Stokes not good enough as a lone striker, no pace and often loses possession.

  5. Delaneys Dunky 18:52,



    I’m not having that. Remember that Priest fae last week?



    Celtic is way doon the priorities really, Celtic is enjoyment, you may not say a loata about things but Celtic is where it really should be.



    And that Priest was basically saying What is happenin’



    Celtic is a vehicle, most definitely, a very groovy and tremendous vehicle, it definitely comes a wee bit back frae the really important things in Life.

  6. Pogmathonyahun aka Laird of the Smiles on

    E-mail read out on CTV just at start of second half from someone called Kevin in Sydney complaining about the first half performance…………..couldnae be could it?

  7. The designer of the “attractive” Scotland CG uniforms is Glasgow School of Art graduate, Jilli Blackwood. She is pictured here with the unfortunate athletes who drew the short straw to pose in her creations.



    An insight into Jilli’s own dress sense could have been easily established if someone had looked at how she dresses for a special event. My 6 year old granddaughter dresses like to dress up.






    What I’d like to know is how did the guy in the jeans sneak into the frame?

  8. Paul67 et al



    Thanks for the updates folks, though not particularly inspiring. May need a blast of volcanic air to get the bhoys smoking.



    Elsewhere, can anybody tell me of any country in the world who would consider Derek Johnstone, (who seems to have morphed into one of the Easedale brothers) a financial expert? No? Me neither.

  9. Delaneys Dunky on

    Arrived at my daughter’s bbq. She has just told me there are 6 bottles of Magners in the fridge for her da. Magic. :)

  10. Very little drive from midfield until McGregor and Biton got on.


    Toothless up front – Watt added energy at the end.


    Will we miss Broonie?


    Will we miss Sammi?



    Too early to say, but not many attempts on goal tonight, cerainly a good few less than NewCo Dukla.



    Next week will be the litmus test…

  11. Cindirrat Thomo on

    I asked last night but fell asleep.



    I’m off to sunny Nairn for a fortnight, any Celtic pubs there?

  12. squire danaher on

    Amazing how everyone is now able to comment on lack of tempo, pace and penetration Celtic have persistently displayed over the last 4 years.

  13. Lack of pace all over the pitch coupled to poor passing and that very poor showing is what we get.



    Please do not play with that midfield 3 again,Biton,Johanssen and Henderson for me, Commons needs to fall back a bit and put a bit more effort into his game



    Pukki and Griffiths as our attackers.



    Ronny must now see that he needs to bring in a bit of quality.





  14. Clashcitybhoy on

    New manager has gone for a very similar shape and up in 3 out of 4 matches.


    Suspect he must be looking at progress so far & thinking are these guys good enough to play in the shape I want? Will they adapt, or, do I need new players, or, do I change my system.



    The big concern for me is upfront – during pre-season the line ups suggest Stokes is the number one striker, Puuki number two, whilst others have barely had a look in.



    My own gut feel is that manager would dump Stokes, Griffiths, Puuki and Balde immediately if he could, whilst Watt will be given a chance.

  15. deary deary me – its pre-season football. Priority – Players finding fitness and sharpness and Ronny getting a feel for the players and systems which work with the players he has. He will need time and probably a couple of additions for the team he wants Celtic to be.




  16. Celtic TV commentator has a brand new cliché for the new season . . . Celtic are hunting in packs.



    He has used it at least 10 times in the 4 games.



    What exactly does that mean in the context of a football match?

  17. Can’t believe some of the negative comments about what was after all, a pre-season training match. Two wins and two draws is a vast improvement on the past few pre-seasons.



    The pitch was poor and not conducive to silky, passing football.



    Some very fickle supporters out there.

  18. CG uniforms: first time I’ve seen that. How did that get voted?



    What can you say except maybe “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” ?

  19. TomMcL



    “Front foot tactics” – another cliché from the Ant & Dec



    Auf wiedersehen :o)

  20. bluegrass celt on

    Auld Hampden Park looks like it’s found it’s try vocation at last. Let’s leave it like that please .

  21. stebhoy



    19:20 on 11 July, 2014



    deary deary me – its pre-season football. Priority – Players finding fitness and sharpness and Ronny getting a feel for the players and systems which work with the players he has. He will need time and probably a couple of additions for the team he wants Celtic to be.









    Well Said

  22. Syd



    Yep. It’s all in the jeans for me too.



    Someone gave Jilli a colouring book and because she’s got an “ology” in art, no one had the guts to tell her that her design is crap.



    Mind it’s the CG so the whole thing is a joke. Maybe Jilli is having a laugh too.

  23. paolosboots FC before PLC on

    Tom was wondering if the pitch was so poor why arent we checking out these surfaces beforehand to me thats sloppy planning although I didnt see tge game. Was at a st pats v bray wanderers game 2 weeks ago and the pitch was in great condition. I wonder why we dont play a few games around ireland at least we’d get good crowds and a good game eg dublin, cork and sligo!

  24. Good evening friends.



    When I last posted around 13 hours ago I forecast that it could get messy this evening. One half day, a few beers and now on the ole Chateauneuf de Pape. Life’s Good (now and again)

  25. Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan supports Oscar Knox, MacKenzie Furniss and anyone else who fights Neuroblastoma on

    Kano’s Ghirl wins at 25/1?????



    Where is that bloody Richie with his info when we could all have slapped a tenner on the beast?



    He can buy his own round next time I see him — mind you I will buy him one back.



    Useless Bugger!

  26. Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan supports Oscar Knox, MacKenzie Furniss and anyone else who fights Neuroblastoma on




    If last Friday is anything to go by you will be in bed by News at Ten!

  27. ibleedgreenandwhite1



    19:24 on 11 July, 2014



    We’re dooooomed










    I wonder to myself why he never mentioned Bristol.

  28. So now the first part of pre season is complete and the real thing starts on Tuesday, what will the starting eleven be and what positions require new signings (& who should we sign to fill them)?


    Given RD’s preference for a 4-3-3 formation with pace then I would imagine we need two new wingers/wide forward to start with. Forrest is permanently injured and Boerrigter not good enough, it looked like we were playing players out of position in wide areas to make up for lack of natural width in the squad.


    Could the GMS rumours be true? Probably available for >£500k.

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