Frustration and promise in Seville


A game most of us expected to lose without fuss instead turned out to be a frustrating look into what could have been.  Again, we lost four goals in Europe, as we did on three occasions in our Europa League group last season.  Again, we allowed a two-goal lead to slip away.  Despite the superficial similarities to last season, there are reasons to believe we are on a different trajectory.

Celtic bossed Real Betis for the first 30 minutes; the home side could barely hold possession in the final third.  At 0-2, the game could have slipped away from them, but a couple of breaks of the ball 18 yards from the Celtic goal was enough to bring them back into contention and transform the night.  Celtic were too fragile to assert telling authority.

Tom Rogic was head and shoulders above everyone else on the field.  On nights like that, you wonder what he is doing in Scottish football.

After an uninspiring start against Ross County on Saturday, Jota showed us what all the fuss is about.  Forced to play on the right, his deliveries were a delight.  His chance to put Celtic three up may, or may not, have changed the outcome of the game; if you can lose four so readily, there are no guarantees.  The winger pulled up with cramp on Saturday and was visibly waning after 75 minutes last night, when his touch and composure deserted him, but we have a player straight from the ‘Bums on seats’ drawer.

Albian Ajeti’s movement inside the box set the game alight.  He got onto the end of Jota’s cross to score the opener, then tempted Claudio Bravo in the Betis goal into a challenge before nipping the ball away from the keeper.  Would Eduard have made either run?  Not recently, that’s for sure.  The penalty was of the stonewall variety.

After the game, when asked why we keep losing so many goals in Europe, I protested.  The central defenders only met last week, the left back has never played there before this month, and the right and left side pairings were completely new partnerships, “This is different”, I insisted.  Time will tell.

I have watched a lot of Celtic teams lose in Spain but do not recall going there with such an attacking strategy.  I suspect it would never occur to Ange Postecoglou to play any differently.

The game had the look of one of those all-star games we used to see in the 80s, “England v The Rest of the World”, type affairs.  Plenty of talent and lots of goals, as no one really knew each other or what the structure was.  Both Celtic and Betis will improve.  Going on my expectations before the game, there were reasons to be encouraged, despite all the goals against!

BT will be interested to hear that Uefa permit member clubs to veto broadcaster staff assigned to cover games.  I doubt it.  BT subscribers were denied the channels’s top team when Newco refused to allow Neil Lennon and Chris Sutton entrance to Ibrox on security grounds.  Where else outside of the Gangster Clubs will you see behaviour like this?  It is like a club being run by children.

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  1. McPhail Bhoy…I knew Colin years ago, quiet lad but a Celtic man. Editor quite likely a hun but it doesn’t seem to matter, it always comes out the same way. A bit like Tim referees…can’t be seen to show bias, so, lean the other way. Unlike the huns who don’t care what anyone thinks…

  2. CONEYBHOY on 17TH SEPTEMBER 2021 2:31 PM




    At Celtic, he was expected to step out and pass out of defence and also deal with a breaking opposition when we lost the ball. Very different job and i’m glad he found a good fit.




    In reality, he was never given a proper chance and a section of the support were on his back.

  3. Is the livingstone game available on ppv? I’m on their site just now, Reading about ppv but haven’t came across how to buy it yet. How to make it easy for ‘customers’ to spend their money 🤔

  4. when we recruited AP what was his last job how long ago was it what other teams where vying for his services?


    is it a bit odd that AP has religiously stuck with a footballing philosophy that is at least 40% exposed to defensive vulnerabilities if challenged by an opposition that is of a higher level of quality than SPFL bottom six?


    did the huns shorten the width of the Ibrox pitch when we played them because Celtic are back to the McGeady/Maloney era were the huns defence doubles up on Celtic’s wide players as Celtic have no threat coming through the middle of the pitch because we try to pass the ball into the net instead of shooting on site, but NOT in a Ryan Christie way.


    have the huns continued to shorten the width of Ibrox pitch sense the game against Celtic?


    are Celtic supporters now looking like the biggest hypocrites in football after all of their protests against Celtic board last season and then at the end of protests the fans gave the board what it wants from fans, season ticket money?


    fans say they support the team with season tickets but do the board not get that money instead of the team?


    are Celtic fans exposing themselves to a horrible truth by highlighting anti Irish racism when huns sing the horrible famine song, as huns are correct when they say the famine ended a long time ago and if we Celtic fans and non Celtic fans who are of Irish descent don’t like the Scottish way of life then nobody is making us stay in Scotland and we should get back to Ireland because no fringe minority of Irish descent is going to sway the majority into stopping what they have a right to do as the entire country, even Celtic FC, is rigged to suit that majorities wishes?


    should we not after all these years be following religiously Mr Stein’s example of putting the ball into the net more than them is the way we defeat them, well it is for a while at least?


    is it Catholic’s or Celtic fans fault that huns suspect that any of us could be let’s say, dodgy, or what the huns sing to us about “peados” and try stigmatize us as being like that, because Catholic Church and Celtic FC’s attacking of this smear hasn’t been forceful enough and, has probably understandably led to more than huns suggesting that both Catholic Church and Celtic FC have wept this horrible issue under the carpet, and therefore there was something to hide and both, Catholic’s and Celtic fans are guilty of neglect an a huge scale for not holding both, Catholic Church and Celtic FC to account both, on congregational, and financial withdrawal terms, and that BOTH, Catholic’s and Celtic fans are equally guilty of condoning a mismanagement of this scandal which lends itself to a public image that suggests these “alleged” scandals have been sneakily and lazily swept under the carpet, and that this feeds the majority of the majority of Scotland’s populations desire to see these “dodgy” Catholic’s Celtic fans and people of Irish descent removed from Scotland?


    horrible stuff I know but, can we expect to get to the point if all of the cards are not on the table? horrible or not?

  5. “The question you don’t probe Paul, is WHY did our central defenders only meet last week? WHY did we not recruit a recognised LB (Scales?) until the games were upon us and WHY are our pairings completely new? WHY?”



    Personally, I am not interested in `Why` those things happened the way they did.


    I cannot even say that learning from those ` mistakes` would be helpful for the simple reason that there was nothing to learn. ie Those playing their various parts in the running of our massive club will already have known what was necessary but , for whatever reasons,were not able to produce the goods.


    Saying what we should have or could have done is a waste of time.

  6. Ziggydoc



    I’m going to pass; likley in town for lunch with the missus so i’ll go Hesgoal if i’m back in time.



    Hope we get a big astro win for once

  7. The BT/Lennon/Sutton thing is dangerous. Sevco now decides who can and who cannot gain admission to their ground. It also selects only those commentators judged to be friendly. They are operating a blacklist. It remains to be seen whether or not BT will accept this affront to free speech.

  8. Hot Smoked on 17th September 2021 5:16 pm



    Totally disagree with that, if you don’t learn from your mistakes you never make progress.


    A fundamental in business and engineering.


    There are consultants who make a very good living from RCCA.

  9. I’m all for the Ange way of playing, but, we do need to start winning games that matter, glorious failure can become a habit. Until we do start to win these types of games then the jury is still out on whether this way of playing will provide trophies, I really hope it does as it’s better, so much better, than watching what was on offer last season, por cierto.



    Hope we get a big astro win for once




    We will. Daft as it sounds, I feel more confident about the league after last night. CCV looks like he’s providing far more physical presence in defence and attack, which we’ve not had for ages. Starfelt also looking better and more comfortable on the ball. I really like Ange and hope that he can tinker to make us more rigid defensively in Europe (defence ain’t just about defenders).

  11. I have been awol for several days, actually almost a week. We are in the midst of an election right now and I was working the advance polls, Friday through Monday, they were open from 9:00 until 21:00.



    We had to be there one hour before and stay for at least another hour after; this does not include getting up early to dress and make up lunches as well as winding down when arriving home. At least I live only 6 minutes from the polling station.



    So in saying that I was too donald ducked tae come on here with comments on what has so far transpired.



    Friday night when I got in I read about the Dominator, I will comment later on this week on how I see this.



    Saturday it was our game and their thievin once again, que sera sera, and so on.



    First of all I would like to thank MCPHAIL BHOY on 16TH SEPTEMBER 2021 11:49 AM for his explanation of the faith holidays including not just ours but the other descendants of Abraham, this is just the way my mother explained it to me many moons ago although I still get a wee chuckle over sitting in primary singing “see amid the winters snow”.



    As for faith holidays, when at hame I always worked Good Friday, however if my memory serves me well nae horse racing and nae sports whatsoever in Europe.



    Easter Monday was a great day off, lots of sports on especially the ponies, conversely, over here the roles are reversed and GF is a statutory holiday whereas EM is not unless you’re a government employee, I had the pleasure for 25+ years.



    Anyway, sitting in the pineapple as a wee bhoy our PP, who once lectured at Blairs College, stood on the pulpit at 3:00 pm and mentioned that as we were congregating to celebrate the most important feast day in the Christian calendar games were kicking off in England, I blame Henry VIII and the fact he couldnae keep it in his pocket for that lol.



    As for Christianity, I as mentioned above spent 4 days in a United Church which was used as a polling place, no school gymnasiums this year, their Boards would not allow it and quite rightly so.



    The UC, is the second largest Christian denomination after the Catholic Church in Canada.



    It was founded in 1925 as a merger of four protestant denominations the Methodist Church, the Congregational Union of Ontario and Quebec, two-thirds of the congregations of the presbie church in as well as the Evangelical United Brethren Church. Membership peaked in 1964 at 1.1 million and has declined since.



    They also share their premises with the Alliance Church which is a bit like the Pentecostal, all fire and brimstone.



    Neither church, unlike our own RC version in Ontario, has congregational services and stream in a soundproof room to their members.



    Incidentally, this is only the 2nd time in my life that I have been in a non-Catholic church the other was in Ballyshannon Co Donegal, which I am led tae believe has its own very active lol, and that was only out of curiosity.



    While sitting there I was able to hear their music if not the sermon and one of the hymns by the UC pastor was ‘Here I Am Lord”, I have just returned from a funeral in my own church and this was sung.



    As a wee bhoy I remember singing along with the choir “They’ll Know We Are Christians by Our Love”. Now this shower of scruff that will be marching on Saturday are not by any manner of means Christian, in fact IMHO they are the very opposite.



    As Don McLean once said “I saw Satan laughing with delight the day” the band played “why don’t you go home” and women, and I use that term lightly, were urinating on chapel steps.



    It was not always like this though, and here’s a wee story about St Martin of Tours Church in the Renton, birthplace of our first captain who’s da, David, incidentally was a member of the local Irish Land League in Dumbarton to illustrate this.



    The mother parish, Our Lady and St Mark’s, in Alexandria was founded in 1859 but, with a large increase in the Catholic population, Archbishop Charles Eyre was advised to open a second parish in the district.



    In response, in 1887 Renton’s first missionary rector was appointed and worked tirelessly collecting funds for the construction of a chapel, school and chapel house in the village.



    On 6th August 1898, Mr W.E.Gilmour of Alexandria was invited to cut the first sod for the chapel-school and presbytery. He performed the task before a crowd of 3,000, with a silver spade, which was displayed in the church hall.



    Speaking afterwards Mr Gilmour acknowledged that the church in Alexandria was too small for the needs of the congregation and said: “the next step will be the erection of a Roman Catholic Church in Renton”.



    The owner of the land on which the chapel-school was built, Mr W.S.Turnbull, was a non-catholic, but welcomed the construction of a church. He said, “the Catholics are only doing what every denomination should strive to do, namely to improve the morality of the people and, towards this end, education is the first step”.



    It should be noted that this display of ecumenism was prior to in 1912 the purchase and amalgamation of 3 shipyards in Govan by Harland and Wolfe and the relocation of some of their Belfast employees bringing with them their own brand of sectarianism. During the 1920s, Catholic workers were routinely expelled from working in all of their shipyards.



    It was also in 1912 that ure-primrose pledged deidco to the craft which allowed the active unionist and freemason, who politically aligned to the lol and vociferously expressed anti-Irish and anti-Catholic sentiments, to, along with the lonesome boatman, immediately start to recruit from the ranks of both ludges and not just players only but fans, business associates, tradesmen, clerks, accountants, policemen, judicial officers of the court and most importantly members of the media who would champion the cause of deidco quietly in some places and vocally from the terracing and stands.



    Nota Bene who was recruited and mibbees just mibbees you will understand what we have tae put up with in the most anti Catholic and Irish country in the western world.



    No wonder Ian Archer after Barcelona 1972 expressed the following “This has to be said about rangers, as a Scottish Football club they are a permanent embarrassment and an occasional disgrace. This country would be a better place if rangers did not exist.”



    He also said “And because some people are so sick, I have to put six words at the end of this column. I am not a Roman Catholic.”

  12. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    In the past 24 hours a new ingredient has emerged in the narrative of our game last night



    “6th best team in Spain”.



    I even saw Betis described as mid-table.



    Just for context, the top four in Spain last year were Atletico, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Sevilla.



    In the last decade alone these four have played in FOURTEEN European finals.



    That’s how good they are.



    6th in Spain – a creditable feat.



    PS – re Sevco’s hamstring injuries?



    Ach well. Sitting in coach on 3 different planes to and from Armenia will do that.



    The winning of the pre-season feel good cup seems a long time ago now.

  13. There are always different takes on any controversial stories coming out of Scottish football.



    I posted earlier that it is a disgrace that the Ibrox club can ride roughshod over media freedom and decide who BT may employ to cover matches in their stadium.



    The noise now emanating from Ibrox is that having Sutton and Lennon in their stadium presented a security risk. I am prepared to accept this but it is an enormous admission and probably more serious than the first charge of merely manipulating the media.



    What a defence of “a security risk’ means, is a tacit admission that their fans will probably do harm to anyone that they don’t like during a UEFA sponsored match. Regardless of what UEFA think of the denial of their partner, BT, the right to choose their own presenters, what will they make of *Rangers admission that their fans will probably attack media figures whom they dislike within the stadium on UEFA nights?



    Of course the club are covering their ‘financial’ back also – if there was to be a high-profile incident involving an attack on media personnel live on TV, the Ibrox club would, one imagines, receive a large fine and a lengthy ban from UEFA competition.



    So many permutations, but it will all dissipate before Sunday’s match against Motherwell, just like it never happened. The BBC will not have access to interview the Motherwell manager on site after the game and, will read out Gerrard’s post-match interview to a rival broadcaster vetbatim, as usual.

  14. Paul67 et al



    For those that are interested, tickets for the Raith Rovers cup tie next Thursday are now available in the public sale, online etc. as from today. Reasonable prices too.

  15. Witness the pics of respective managers – shortie’s picture editor chose to illustrate the story of last nights game…………..



    Big AP looks beat, weak, crestfallen and dejected………..



    the Ned looks angry, strong, indignant…ragin’……………..

  16. The Loyal Orange Association is the most important voluntary association for the Protestant community in Northern Ireland. This used to be the case in many English-speaking provinces of Canada as well, particularly Ontario, New Brunswick and Newfoundland. Indeed, our analysis of surviving Orange membership returns suggests that the Orange Order was generally most powerful in Newfoundland, followed by Northern Ireland, Ontario and then Scotland.



    Decline has been the order of the day for the organisation in all jurisdictions since the eighties, and in most areas since the 1950’s. This process has resulted in the elimination of the Order’s political influence in Ontario and Newfoundland, but has yet to affect the Order in Northern Ireland, where nearly all Ulster Unionist Party MPs and MLAs are members.[15]




    Our analysis to date, though incomplete, suggests that cultural factors related to religious and ethnic composition, as well as education, are the best predictors of Orange membership patterns. Economic factors generally correlate poorly with Orange membership density. Political events lie in between the cultural and economic in their importance. This picture, however, conceals great diversity. Cultural factors are more important across space than across time. Economic factors play a greater role after World War II than before it. Finally, political events are more important in Northern Ireland than elsewhere. Depression and war had little systematic effect on membership. The only generalisable finding is that the end of World War II buoyed membership in all locations.




     Beyond these general effects, we can specify some surprising particular ones. First of all, Orangeism has been in decline across all locations since the 1980’s, and across most locations since the 1960’s. Northern Ireland is not an exception to the rule. Secondly, since the advent of the ‘Troubles,’ religio-ethnic division appears to have abated as a spur to Orange growth in Northern Ireland. In fact, the decline in Ulster Orangeism is now positively associated with the relative decline of the Protestant population – much as was the case in Ontario during 1901-61.




    Finally, the role of ethnic and religious factors (notably Catholicism or Irish-Protestant ethnicity) is more powerful in cross-sectional than in time-series analysis. This suggests that while sectarianism and Irish-Protestant migration flows helped to stimulate Orange membership in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, this pattern no longer holds true today. Geographic differences bear the fossils of these earlier dynamics, but now it is community and family tradition, not Protestant-Catholic antagonism, that keeps the Orange flame from flickering out.





    Dr. Eric P. Kaufmann, Dept. of Politics, University of Southampton,



  17. garygillespieshamstring on

    My take on the BT thing is that it had nothing to do with security and was all about the fact that the presence of CS and, in particular, NL, would bring out the worst of their songbook and they couldn’t take the risk of it being broadcast far and wide in case UEFA were prompted to take action on it.



    While on the subject of UEFA action, has anything been made of Aribo spitting at the Lyon player? Clearly seen on TV footage but very little coverage from Scottish MSM as far as I am aware.



    Really enjoyed watching our game last night despite the result.

  18. JHB on 17TH SEPTEMBER 2021 2:44 PM





    I think you need to view your semi filled beer glass from a different perspective…. A while back you were promoting a 3 year timeline for our comeback… there is some history to support this…. Based on so far with evidence of what I’ve seen at games we are 18 months away from flying …. Defence is clearly too open but more to do with playing together as an 11 …



    …. Have it in my water we’ll horse the Hun in the near future which will scare the crap out of them ….



    Still interesting times and time will tell just quickly we knit together as a unit




  19. Dexter P Bampot @ ages ago.



    Neil Lennon was slaughtered every game in Europe with the in cliche ‘ game management ‘



    It used to be called defending.



    John Kennedy got it after Neil Lennon, now we’re on to Ange.



    Bizarre but they tell me the Spanish press were very un BBC like in their praise of Celtic.



    Funny ole game CSC

  20. An Tearmann 8.01pm


    The optics of this appointment look decidedly messy. Hope you ate good Big Mhan.



  21. EKBHOY on 17TH SEPTEMBER 2021 7:36 PM




    I was of the opinion that it would take three seasons with us on the way down and having to regroup before we could climb up again. S1 – stop the rot. S2 – ramp-up the rebuild. S3 – ready for the challenge. However I am always evidence-led, if it changes, then so do I.



    Ange and some of the new faces have encouraged me somewhat and I am persuaded that a significant challenge could happen next season, with the usual caveats: i.e. that Ange stays, we continue to strengthen, and we get noticeably closer to Sevco this season….which I think we will.



    It is a massive task – I can only see one retention from last year’s horror show in our first-team squad for the start of next season, i.e. Calmac, and who knows he may have to be sold in order to buy – he is about out only decent – money saleable asset left.

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