Fragile Feyenoord offers hope


The status of this Champions League group is officially….alright .  In yesterday’s blog I said our draw was all about Pot 3.  Turns out, this wasn’t the case.  Feyenoord, our Pot 1 opponents, are the weakest we are ever likely to draw from that tier.  They earned their spot by being Dutch champions and benefiting largely from the performances of Ajax, who along with PSG are the only top 20 rated European teams outside England, Spain, Italy and Germany.

Feyenoord is almost a verb in Dutch, a bit like to “Hibs” something is in English.  Since their infamous Uefa Cup Final against Tottenham in 1974 they have won the league only five times.  Their record number of consecutive titles is two (achieved once).

They are a club characterised by greatness that vanishes in the night.  Think back to that time they had one of Europe’s top five strikers, but stuck him on the wing on the rare occasions he played (Brendan, note 21-year-old Liel Abada).  Feyenoord are a gift of a Pot 1 opponent and the weakest team we will face.

Atletico Madrid finished second in La Liga last season, a point behind neighbours Real.  They were an eye-watering 28 points and nine places above Pot 1 Sevilla.  Real thumped us home and away on Champions League duty without leaving second gear, albeit we had 60 minutes in the sun before darkness fell.  If Celtic lay a glove on Atletico it would take a master gameplan – I would be surprised.

Last season Lazio finished above a Champions League finalist as well as a Champions League semi-finalist.  Our wins over them in 2019 are among the highlights of Celtic’s last decade.  We defended stoutly in both Europa League group games, before snatching two late winners.  Football seldom tastes as sweet.

It is no coincidence that over two periods of manager, Neil Lennon’s results were better in group stage and knockout round European games than either Brendan Rodgers or Ange Postecoglou.  Neil defended his box when it was appropriate to do so and gave us wonderful football memories.  Brendan and Ange recorded some of our heaviest defeats in European competition.  Sure, we need to test ourselves, but Brendan, we also need results.  It’s Tony Watt’s goal against Barcelona the Celtic social admins continually play, not Tony Ralston’s gumption against PSG.

There will be more blogs up throughout the day.

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  1. ….and so if we really wanted to take Europe a bit more seriously, we’d probably conclude that hiring a better defensive unit would give us a punchers chance in games. We seen it with Forster on several occassions.






    Invest in a points-winning GK.


    Upgrade your SPFL-level LB.


    Replace your 2nd CH with a CCV level equivalent.



    As one important part of the team goes, we haven’t done any of that.



    I can’t take the club seriously when it talks, but doesn’t walk, about Euro ambition.




  2. What year is it ?



    Some folk still going on about fabled Ivan Tony and John Mcginn.



    The lengths folk will go to for attention on here beggars belief.



    Zero cast iron evidence they were likely to come and it’s a total irrelevance as to what is happening now.

  3. From the BBC:



    Tottenham manager Ange Postecoglou, speaking in his pre-match news conference before Saturday’s match against Burnley, about a move for Nottingham Forest’s Brennan Johnson: “I’m in the position where other people are in control of those matters and I’m not brought into the loop until late on.



    “I don’t think it’s my place to talk about it. The countdown clock says nine or 10 hours and we’ll see what happens.”



    Not so different eh?




    Watch Ange’s press conference when he’s asked about Mitoma. He talks about how Mitoma took his team apart not long after he’d been playing for his university. He said him and Reo ripped them apart and he knew straight away he’d be a top player



    His point was that there is real quality if you look in the right places. He really laughed when he was asked about James Maddison being a bargain at £40m



    There’s very little value to be added to an in-demand high profile European youngster at 8m or more. Nobody sells someone like that on the cheap. 21 year old Polish center backs at 5m perhaps.



    We are hammering the far eastern markets at the moment because as Ange says there’s real value out there. We put together a treble winning team with players from there – Kyogo and Hatate were steals at 6m odd together. Worth how much now?

  5. Glass 2/3



    Good to see another stellar positive contribution.



    Genuine question has Celtic ever made you happy ? Even let’s say in the last 22 years which arguably have seen us beat more bigger teams than ever and win more trophies than ever in our history.

  6. DENIABHOY on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2023 12:52 PM


    Always liked the Betis kit



    DENIA, was thinking the same plus Aris Limassol play in a very similar strip to Betis with the vertical green stripes.



    Mrs Emeraldbee and I stayed in a hotel next to Betis’ ground in Seville and took a walk around the ground. Opposite the main entrance is a monument to the establishment of the club – very working class, very much about helping the local community. In many ways like our own history. The Hun will love it there (though I don’t remember any public toilets handy for them!)



    Ave Ave

  7. the long wait is over on

    I’m ambivalent about the group and , to some extent , the CL group stages anyway.



    I like to get one of the Big Beasts for the “glamour” and seeing truly elite players at Parkhead. OTOH, I fear what they can do to us.



    I hold no realistic expectation ,based on past disappointments, of us progressing and would pretty much always be happy with third.



    This year we just have to see . as always , how we go but I will say this – I really can’t abide Atletico Madrid. Their managers a classless thug who moulds players in his own image.



    I’d love – but don’t expect – us to take something from them.



    Oh – and I still haven’t forgotten 1974.



    I’d make the players watch the whole home game before we played them.

  8. bournesouprecipe on




    I see what you did there you’ll never walk alone anywhere.



    Lucky if we finish in Pot 4? 👍

  9. Anyone think the negativity in the current window is driven by the failure of any of Januarys signings to push through and be starting yet…..aside from AJ.



    Rather than the current unknowns who have not had a chance yet and are seen as replacing regulars who have either departed or are injured.



    We expected Iwatta Kobyassi Oh and Johnston to really step up but we haven’t seen it yet apart from AJ who has been injured.

  10. bournesouprecipe on

    “ Gers have quickly plugged the CL financial gap by agreeing the £5M sale of Glenn Kamara with Leeds “



    Jack Anory CSC

  11. “Manchester United have signed Turkey goalkeeper Altay Bayindir from Fenerbahce for £4.3m. The 25-year-old, who has been capped five times by his country, joins on a four-year contract. Last season he was a key player for Fenerbahce as they won the Turkish Cup and finished second in the Super Lig. ”



    Wonder if he was on our radar? Cheap, experienced and still young. Doubt he’ll play many games for Utd.

  12. Well,that’s me for today.CQN,now spouting an inordinate amount of Fortune Tellers,Crystal Ball readers,Soothsayers.Like P.T. Barnums sideshow on here.


    Thing is,everyone knew they were Charlatans.

  13. Reasons to Support Betis💚



    “In its initial years, Sevilla Balompié dressed in blue shirts with white shorts, which represented the infantry at the time. From late 1911, the team had adopted the shirts of Celtic,[30] at that time vertical stripes of green and white, that were brought over from Glasgow by Manuel Asensio Ramos, who had studied in Scotland as a child. On 28 February 2017, on the 37th Andalusia Day, Real Betis wore Celtic-inspired hoops against Málaga CF.[31]”

  14. glendalystonsils on

    BURNLEY78 on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2023 1:55 PM



    Good point . the failure (so far) of some of last seasons signings to show the hoped for potential , consigns our new arrivals to be viewed negatively before they’re hardly in the door .



    An understandable fear .

  15. CELTIC40ME on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2023 1:51 PM



    I don’t care where we get them. Just be better at doing so. We went to football-mad Argentina and bought the only guy in the country who can’t tackle.



    We went back to Japan and wasted our time on Iwata (who can’t dislodge Callum), Guchi and Kobyashi.



    We went to SK in the summer and have what looks like a 50% hit rate as I’m calling it early and suggesting Kwon is really poor.



    All of the above is a circa £7m spend. For that we could have found Sangare of PSV in lower echelons of northern yurp.



    Maybe Mark Lawell is just a bit crap at his job.




  16. Full name Real Betis Balompié, S.A.D.


    Nickname(s) Los Verdiblancos (The Green-and-Whites)


    Los Verderones (The Greens)



  17. As the transfer deadline day drama unfolds, with the clock ticking relentlessly towards midnight, Celtic have firmly shut the door on any potential exit for academy star Rocco Vata.



    A £550,000 bid from Italian side Torino has been swiftly rejected, underlining the club’s intent to hold onto their young talent. Vata, a lifelong Celtic fan, has been keen to break into the first team and has shown promising signs under former manager Ange Postecoglou.






    Much as I would love him to stay, if he wants to go, then let him go.

  18. Big Wavy



    Jesus man.



    We also got jota kyogo hart abada o Riley mooy hatate Johnston



    And others this past few years.



    You just stick with the ones you don’t fancy or those who have not had a chance if it makes you feel better about yourself.



    May goodness sometimes folk love to wallow in negative misery.



    In other news Celtic has signed 3 players in the past 3 days to fix unforeseen injury related issues but hey let’s focus on the negatives.

  19. 🗣️ Brendan Rodgers on:



    • Paulo Bernardo: “A young player that’s coming in with potential. He gives us strength and depth in midfield”.



    • More incomings: “I don’t think there will be many more coming in”.





    Ouch. Not sure this stacks up with the ‘quality’ comment from a few weeks back.




  20. What about the Joe Fillipi / John Dowie window ? Or bringing back Vic Davidson ? Or dear old Frank Munro ? Or the Queens Park taxi driver we signed to be our new center half in big Jocks time. Willie Garner is another.



    Jock Stein must have been rubbish at seeing a good player eh.

  21. SAINT STIVS on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2023 11:59 AM



    What other musical combos could have graced the Hoops ?





    Not musical, but sporting, I give youse…



    The Toure Scheidt

  22. BURNLEY78 on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2023 2:13 PM



    My list is a helluva lot longer than your list. Since Ange’s rebuild window, our return, beyond AJ, has been abysmal. Hart was a fading keeper with leadership qualities (a distressed purchase) and Mooy dropped on our lap, down the line, now in retirement. I give you James McCarthy and a 4 year contract in response.



    Our hit rate is poor, our trading model stuck and there’s a clear gap in noises about Europe and the reality.



    But feel free to keep clapping and don’t ever question..




  23. BR comments are very disheartening. At the end of last season, I thought it was fairly clear that we needed an upgrade at LB and Keeper. I’d throw in another RB because the fall off from AJ just wasn’t acceptable.



    Events can overtake you in the summer weeks so we’ve had to go out and get 3 Cbs and and reinforcements out wide. So some slack is required.



    However, no amount of bombast from P67 will convince me we’ve given BR a full hand in which to play poker with the big boys.



    We look set to go into the CL with Taylor and Hart in our starting 11. We’re an injury away from Ralston joining that line up.



    A failure to recruit a LB belies any pretence we went about our business with a coherent plan this window.

  24. Fair dos for a couple to remind me that Duffy and McCarthy fit the ‘proven qualities’ label. Very true.


    I still expect Nat to do a standup job for us.



    As for the banger-like over-react about Matty O’R and poss player trading… seems it hurts to even think of taking doon all they posters of yer teen crush aff the bedroom wall. Sheez.




  25. bigrailroadblues on

    Great afternoon with Carpe Diem, Lurking Tim and An Tearmann. A fine day with good Celtic men.

  26. Great day oot wae An Tearmann, BRRB n Carpe Diem. Mod u want to explain y An Tearmann is banned n why Melbourne Mick can’t access this wonderfull site?



    The honesty from some of those re Sunday may be reasonable, but leave me sick ;-))…lookin at u ;-))



    Hail Hail

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