Europa door ajar for Celtic


When we drew Maribor I wrote about their performance in last season’s Europa League, when they were eliminated by eventual winners, Sevilla.  Our man, Blaz, in Slovenia, also warned me that this was a settled team who had improved since ending Rangers’ interest in European football three years ago.

I watched Red Bull Salzburg destroy Ajax in Amsterdam last season with some sublime football, and my pal in Austria tells me not to put too much store in their 3-0 humbling by Malmo, who, apparently, rode their luck to an incredible degree.  Having said that, on the balance of probabilities, they are by far the top seed we would have chosen.

As Croatia Zagreb, Dinamo Zagreb bossed Celtic out of the Champions League play-off round in 1998, our first attempt at the tournament.  Zagreb’s stock has fallen since, so while you could make a good case to suggest we are far from ready to tackle any European team right now, this is a good draw.  They are also not Legia Warsaw, which would have been an unwelcome confrontation at this time.

So far, so good.  Then we draw a complete unknown from pot 4, who happened to eliminate Lyon in the last round.

Between now and the middle of next month Celtic have to be ready for these challenges.  We have an opportunity to progress in the Europa League, earn some badly needed coefficient points, and revenue in the second half of the season.

Bring it on.

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  1. Traditionalist88 that will come in time. The strength of feeling is obvious. But will we carry it through to action of the direct kind. We will see in time.

  2. Neganon & co:-



    Why are you even bothering to argue with these sad, disilusioned fools. Reality will get them eventually but it won’t come from any of us cause after all we’re all just “huns”.


    Tony & co aren’t being as POSITIVE as they usually are……


    We’re 4 – 5 pages into this blog and NONE of them have posted what I expected them to.



    On the BBC website the Europa League draws for the 3 (British)teams were given.


    Underneath was the following statement:-


    “This season’s winners qualify for next year’s Champion’s League.”



    When I logged in I fully expected at least 1 of them – Tony, Joe Figgis, Big Wavy ,even the good old Captain to blog that We’ll win the Europa League easy, then we don’t need to qualify for next year’s CL – or does being POSITIVE only go SO FAR.



    CFC not PLC


    Downsizing Lawell …. but only after DD has gone



  3. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Robin Bhoy Anything any of us post on CQN is largely irrelevant but we just like to vent now and then.I agree the abuse on CQN is a nonsense and it is between so called Celtic fans.However,at the end of the day I can only moderate my own posts. H.H.

  4. The Battered Bunnet on

    “Ledley vs Berget anyone? Wanyama vs Johansen? Samaras vs Pukki? Hooper vs Balde?”



    That’s not entirely fair.



    Ledley v Johansen is a like for like. Hung jury I’d say.



    Samaras v Berget? Sammi hands down for me, but there are quite a few on here who are inclined to disagree, although noticeably fewer after Tuesday night.



    Hooper v Pukki. Now we’re starting to see the problem. We should note though that Stokes was bought at the same time as Hooper. Stokes + Pukki v Hooper? Stokes + Pukki + Baldé v Hooper? Hooper still wins.



    Wanyama was a golden ticket signing. Huge player for us in the year he emerged, and impossible to replace like with like. We tried our luck with Biton. Hasn’t worked. Yet. Might still though.



    We could also consider Wilson v Virgil. Most would go with Virgil I think.



    Forster v Gordon? Actually, a decent attempt at like for like in terms of ability, although Gordon comes with added risk.



    Problem we have is that despite bringing in shed loads of players in the past 2 years, very few have emerged as 1st team material. Since we can only have 11 players on the park at any given time, there’s a limit to the usefulness of having a large squad.



    A large squad comprising middle of the roaders is futile.



    You can’t beat quality footballers. Our judgement in this respect has been very poor.

  5. Tim Malone. There is no doubt that’s a problem. However regressing to the mean is the cowards option and we certainly should be paying 1m a year for the priviliage of our leader taking us there.

  6. A bit strong RobinBhoy but I can see where you are coming from. I think the Club is going through a difficult time and that is being reflected on the Blog. There are a lot of positives such as development of The Celtic Way etc. In fairness to Club they are pushing strongly for a standing area. I expect progress on Green Brigade and heavy handed stewarding. However the most important thing to us all is the team and the football. Europe this year has been an unmitigated disaster. Its not that we didn’t qualify, its the manner in which we didn’t qualify, being hammered by Legia and then losing at home to a limited Maribor team after we were handed a lifeline. Its only to be expected that the blog would be in turmoil.

  7. neganon2



    14:12 on 29 August, 2014


    Tony you have a theory about Huns being here etc. I am just trying to figure out who you think they are.mod you count me in that group?





    Your either not happy that you think I have outed you?


    Or your unhappy at being called a Hun?


    As I said your just a nic. On a screen,

  8. I think we as a club would be better off if we could get rid of some of the players that are obviously not cutting it in the first team.


    If we could get cash for them great but if not let them go play somewhere else.



    If we are being spun a yarn by the club it would not be the first time, however we are still Celts so you can either do something about it, or wait and see and back the club 100 per cent.



    The choice is yours.

  9. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Corkcelt. A good post fella but it doesnt excuse those who are throwing abuse at fellow Celtic fans.In my opinion the blogg could be improved if Paul 67 had a few moderators on site.H.H.

  10. PL got a fairly easy ride on Celtic TV.



    Despite having advocated it a number of times, I accept that there is little or no chance of him coming on here to publicly answereunscripted questions from anonymous posters.



    However, could he be persuaded to repeat an exercise that he himself has set the precedent for.



    Almost exactly four years ago he hawked NL’s appointment as manager around various supporters organisations.



    Mind you despite some folks reservations, NL was a more customer friwndly product than today’s shambles.

  11. TD67



    I don’t believe a lot of huns post on here!



    There are loads who post who are Celtic fans, but obviously disillusioned with events at CP past and present.



    I can understand that.



    I’ve been following Celtic since the early 50’s and have probably seen more thin than thick, but you carry on.



    I know we are a well run club and I want it to stay that way.



    However, Celtic and Celtic Park hold no fear for anyone in Europe and that is a shame.



    A big shame.



    We really could be doing better on the park, but I feel sure Ronny will come good. He need’s time and support.



    I remember once during an interview for tv when asked about European football Jock Stein said it was fine, as long as you were kingpins in your own midden.



    We were punching above our weight in Europe for a while and we can get spoiled on that, believing it should happen every season.



    But, if this is Celtic on a downer today, well, as the song says “the only way is up”!!



    Bring it on.

  12. the long wait is over


    14:19 on


    29 August, 2014


    Thought Peter Lawwell looked like he hadn’t slept all week..



    Nor should he have.

  13. TD67



    Tony…tell us who the huns on the blog are.


    You seem to know all about it.




  14. traditionalist88 on




    I hope for all our sakes things we are not having the same debate this time next year.




  15. tony donnelly



    “Not that you where asked, but you want to be the wing man fine,”



    There’s no rule about waiting to be asked and if there was, you break it as often as I do. Pointing out that the accusation was daft does not make me anybody’s wing-man. It’s a blog, not Top Gun.




    the point is daftie, everyone in here knows where I drink and who I am, so what pleasure did he get out of that grassing,?



    No need for the insult back as none was offered to you. As for the question- that is best directed to eddie since I am not his wing man.




    “I’m an open book, you tip tap about saying you know me, or you know about me, who are you anyway?”



    No, I have not claimed to know you. What I said was that I know people that know you and I trust them when they say you are good company in the main. We both lived in Castlemilk but I don’t recognise your name and don’t know if our paths crossed before. Castlemilk’s a big scheme. Ask Marrakesh if you really need to know who I am but you have no permission to go revealing any details on here or on social media.



    “Oh and please don’t post back a 500 word response, as I really couldent give a monkeys who you are. And I can’t be arsed with yer bull#%^*”



    Well, don’t ask questions and then say that you don’t want to know. And if you cannae be arsed, why respond at all?



    Apart from all that, I managed to keep it under 500 words so you should be pleased.



    Tony, for your own sake, it is time to back off from making everything a personal battle.

  16. TBB



    That is it in a nutshell.



    It also explains going the loan route.



    Football is unpredictable by nature. That is what makes it so fascinating but yet supporters want to make it more predictable by buying certainty.



    You cannot. Lots of evidence to that end. Unless the spend is huge the risk of dud signings is high.



    Enjoy the ride boys. We have careered downhill, now to climb back up the gradient ready for the next thrill.



    It’s a roller coaster. It’s The Celtic Wayhayyyy!

  17. TBB the line about spending all the money on the team has change to the club and over a now seemingly infinite timeframe.



    I do agree. What are we saving up for? Redeeming those shares would at least be sensible to improve annual available cash.

  18. Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!



    That’s the sound of a big giant jobby, heading for a fan over Ibrox way!



    …and we’re complaining about being crap in Europe?…….and not investing in players……And appointing the wrong manager………..?



    Fank thuck I’m a Tim!!






    End London rule. YES

  19. South Of Tunis on

    Cluj supporting Courier Man says Astra are ” so-so ” .



    He added that the best thing to do in Giurgiu is to cross the bridge to Bulgaria . If that doesnt take your fancy then the mud flats are great for shooting ducks and geese .



    Another scorcher,work done , off oot to the beach.

  20. squire danaher on

    joe filippis haircut



    13:50 on 29 August, 2014



    Re tonydonnelly



    I challenged him on him asking another poster, on the subject of us spending some of the money we have stockpiled in the bank over the past 2 years, whether he wanted Celtic to end up in administration.



    Everyone is entitled to an opinion. However that comment is so ridiculous it invites the challenge of whether it’s being made for comic effect.



    I am all for people supporting the team in difficult times but to argue that strengthening the club from a positive financial start point risks administration either beggars belief or calls into question the intellect of him making the argument.



    BTW I have admired your positivity over recent weeks, keep posting :D

  21. Auldheid on res 12. We are nearly a year since it’s inception and still seem no further forward. Does your faith in the board remain strong on this point?

  22. traditionalist88


    14:21 on


    29 August, 2014





    I hope for all our sakes things we are not having the same debate this time next year.






    Unless there is a radical change of direction we will be having it for many years to come.

  23. the green man



    14:21 on 29 August, 2014





    Tony…tell us who the huns on the blog are.


    You seem to know all about it.








    If you and others on here think that Huns don’t post in this blog.? Then that’s fine


    Me, I think different..

  24. Sorry to go on about politics, I hope I revert to normal next month.



    Just two things which amaze me today. Today’s oil revenue figures are the latest disaster from project fear.



    “The Scottish independence campaign has received “a body blow” with new figures showing tax receipts from North Sea oil and gas have dropped by almost a fifth, Treasury Secretary Danny Alexander said” (The Herald).



    However, if you look at this





    You will see that the drop in production was entirely predicted, and oil output is predicted to rise substantially by 2017. So it’s a bit like Danny Alexander saying that it has rained less in the summer, so we’re going to have a water shortage.



    Secondly, I arrived back from Iceland yesterday. On getting into Gatwick I unthinkingly entered the “Arrivals from the EU” exit. A customs guy stopped me and asked me where I was coming from, and when I said Iceland, he said, “No problem sir, you’ve come through the wrong exit. Iceland is not in the EU. It’s still a democracy Sir”.



    The draw is as good as we could have got. Underwhelming, but I don’t think that we are quite ready to be whelmed.

  25. NegAnon2


    14:26 on


    29 August, 2014


    Auldheid on res 12. We are nearly a year since it’s inception and still seem no further forward. Does your faith in the board remain strong on this point?



    Res 12 comes into the category of Basil Fawlty’s ‘Don’t mention the War’.

  26. Any comments on fat Sally’s press conference? Did he storm out abruptly or was it edited?


    As much as I detest the wee numpty, I was glad to see someone tell the pricks where to go!

  27. I have no doubt that if we win our next 3 or 4 games playing well, everyone will settle down and the blog will be a more pleasant place. If some of our new lads turn out to be real crowd pleasers the blog could actually become an extremely pleasant place.

  28. Tony I am neither happy nor unhappy and with respect you haven’t answered my question.



    I am genuinely interested in the answer.



    So given you believe that there are lots of hurting Huns on here do you believe I am one?

  29. mullet and co 2



    Interesting to try to count it up though. I only picked that number as it accounts for the sales of Victor and Fraser – both exceptional players, over the past two summers.



    We must be down 10,000 in season tickets and everyone else got a £100 discount. Then there is loss of the two Rangers (sic) games – at £44 x 7500 of them. There is also the loss of both the Hibs and Hearts support this year – with Hamilton replacing Hibs. What will they bring in terms of an away support? 100? 200?



    I wonder if that lots is nearer £10M than you think?



    Without Champions League money this season the fear is we will be obliged to sell even more quality and from what I have watched this year there isn’t too many left worth the price tag we will require.



    Steady the ship – tell VVD he is going nowhere and get Commons signed up and given the responsibility to lead the team.

  30. TD67



    Tony, I dont care if there are huns on the blog.


    They just get pelters.


    They dont matter…Celtic do


    Dont let the huns get to you…they are idiots.