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Fortune favours the Celtic

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On hearing the results from England’s vaulted competitors in the Champions League last night, against teams ten points off the pace in the Netherlands and seven adrift in Germany, my first thought was, I wonder how they’d get on against Barcelona?  This is a guide to the magnitude of the challenge facing our manager and players this evening.

You can forget notions of stoical performances two weeks ago, that game counts for nothing, which we will find out within the opening minutes.  If Celtic are going to earn anything substantial from their group-stage games against Barcelona, they will need to open better, retain possession higher up the field, and maintain energy and concentration levels until the final whistle.

Barca have had an incredible start to the season, winning nine and drawing one of their 10 domestic league games, while winning all three in the Champions League, but each well-oiled machine is susceptible to having a spanner thrown in.

Nine years ago the same team arrived at Celtic Park on the back of a nine game winning run, the best in their history at the time.  The trip to Glasgow didn’t work out so well for them as Celtic punched a hole in their defences and used what, at the time, I assumed was voodoo to prevent the visitors from scoring.  They travelled home blaming hex, bad finishing and the foreign conditions for their defeat, but the truth is we spooked some of the most experienced players in the game.

This is not a team of diminutive super-humans.  They are enormously skilful and effective, clearly the best team in the world today, but they are vulnerable at the back, as Celtic proved two weeks ago, and struggle to vary the formula, if required, up front.

Celtic need to concentrate on winning possession on the wings inside the opposition half.  Do this regularly enough and opportunities to fire high-balls into the box, directly or from free kicks, will follow.  Neil Lennon will decide if this is a game for Kris Commons but even if it’s not, it is a game for a Commons-style intelligent use of body and ball.

If voodoo is your thing, knock yourself out.  The rest of you wear your lucky socks/shirt/shoes/Hector mask and arrive ready to participate. Fortune favours the Celtic.

I attended the 125th Anniversary celebrations at St Mary’s and later the Kerrydale Suite last night. I’m not sure what I expected beforehand but it was not the funny, touching and unmistakably-Celtic occasion we experienced. Well done to the magnificent Celtic Graves Society for getting the tone absolutely right, and to Celtic for bringing the event together. If Messi and Co were in attendance they would be reluctant to leave the dressing room tonight. The Barcelona directors who were there will now where to aim for with their club.


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  1. Nuclear Bovril and a Half Munched Pie on

    ibleedgreenandwhite1

     

     

    You should tell him you’d love to join the 1st birthday celebrations of his new club

  2. Glendalystonsils likes a mr whippy with his lime green jelly on

    I would lke to think we’ll present a bit more of a goal threat tonight but would settle for 0-0.

     

    BTW that guy voodoo……….his wife’s a doll!

  3. Phil,

     

     

    Good point……….BUT

     

     

    ………… wee “Bully”…….still .has a hectic ‘social’ diary…..

     

    ……. allegedly………

     

     

    Think “Boaby”……..

     

     

    …..it’s all ah’m sayin’.

     

     

    HH.

  4. ibleedgreenandwhite1 on

    nuclear bovril and a half munched pie

     

     

    12:41 on

     

    7 November, 2012

     

    ibleedgreenandwhite1

     

     

    You should tell him you’d love to join the 1st birthday celebrations of his new club

     

     

     

    That will be shining bright : )

     

     

    HH

  5. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Win lose or draw tonight lets show Europe we really are the best fans in the world.Lets show Celtics young team there playing there football on the best stage in Europe let the Barcelona football royalty leave Glasgow saying we have never seen anything like it.Lets sing cheer and chant Neil Lennons name and show we appreciate he has put us back on the European stage.Let the 125 th anniversary of our great club be special make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up let the rest of your body have goose bumps.Millions will be watching all over the world let them watch in awe that Glasgows Green and White and that we will never walk alone. H.H.

  6. .

     

     

    A Stray Dog walks into the Pub and Asks..”I’m lost where am………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………I..?

     

     

    The Barman asks..”Why the Long Pause..?”

     

     

    Summa of ……………………………………

  7. ASonOfDan

     

    12:49 on

     

    7 November, 2012

     

    Celtic Shop in Argyle Street heaving with Barca fans.

     

    Watch yer handbag!!

  8. Celtic duo Stuart Findlay and Marcus Fraser have been handed their first call-ups to the Scotland U21 squad by interim coach Ricky Sbragia.

  9. ed…,

     

     

    your mate doesn’t even know the month of the year, never mind the day of the wekk.

     

     

    Taken from TSFM

     

     

    *****

     

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    ibleed,

     

     

    Here’s the link to the TSFM post that nails the rumour

     

     

    enoughx2 says:

     

    Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 23:52

     

     

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    Rate This

     

     

    the origin of the 31 dec rumour — methinks the natives are gettin restless …..

     

     

    Daniel Mossie @MOSSIEARFC

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  10. PL must be rubbing his hands with glee, and a big smile on his coupon, at the thought of all those Barca fans spending their cash in the Celtic stores!

     

     

    Hope he has extra security on ‘tho – beware of shoplifters!

     

     

    HH!!

  11. GourockEmeraldBhoy on

    Half shift nearly over, train to Glasgow, Merchant city for 3pm. Looking forward to the whole experience ( and a nice cold cider)

     

     

    Cmon the Celts

     

     

    Hail Hail

  12. Fine words Paul67, you are in a fine form – lets hope our team follow your example!!

     

     

    Hope all the fans going tonight have a fantastic evening – show the world exactly what Celtic is all about.

     

     

    Mrs Fin75 and my 2 eldest will be at the game – I let the boss have the ticket as she loves Barca & Messi. But it is a cunning plan…..I expect her to come home tonight saying who wonderful Celtic and the support are!!

     

     

    Me and the wee man will be watching at home….wearing the hoops and doing the huddle!!

     

     

    Have a great night one and all.

     

     

    JCGE!!

  13. ‘mon the hoops !

     

     

    If sammi plays tonight it needs to be as the fornt man, maybe with Watt or another off him. We can’t afford a wide man who doesn’t track back or cover the full back areas tonight.

     

     

    In Lennon I trust

  14. Tallybhoy

     

     

    They have the biggest bouncer you will ever see on the door. The guy is a man mountain.

  15. madrarua

     

     

    12:12 on

     

    7 November, 2012

     

    Two things, no, three things;

     

     

    First , we must not give away possession from our own throws, a bug bear of mine.

     

     

    madrarua, agree on all points. The first on does my nut in also.

  16. “It is up to us, to everyone at Celtic Park, to build up our own legends. We don’t want to live with history, to be compared with legends from the past. We must make new legends.”

  17. ASonofDan

     

     

    The ‘man mountain’ is probably there to keep out any unwelcome sevconians!

     

     

    They shall not pass!

     

     

    HH!!

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