KR Reykjavík recorded a 0-2 win in the Icelandic Cup on Sunday and have one more league game, against bottom club Thor on Thursday, before facing Celtic on Champions League duty a week today.
Celtic have a game this evening against LSK Linz before facing a famous name from our past, Dukla Prague, on Friday. While the world will be coming through a World Cup climb down Celtic will be facing a committed team in the mid-Atlantic. There is no room for complacency.
Next week’s qualifier has all the potential to cause a fright. Ronny Deila will by now know all about Gordon Strachan’s competitive start at Celtic, which cast a shadow he never completely shook off, so it is absolutely critical the manager gets us playing the way he wants us tonight.
Ross McCormack’s route from Murray Park reject at 19 eight years ago to a player Fulham have just bid £11m for is worthy of consideration. It’s easy for us to point to how Rangers ruined young talented footballers but the stark truth is that for well over a decade Celtic had vastly better youth talent that Rangers but failed to graduate anything like as many as we should have.
McCormack had to go to Motherwell, a club well experienced at nurturing talent, to build his career, but he would have fared no better at Celtic. Having no space for youth is one of the many unhealthy consequences of having two massive clubs engaged in a football arms race. Our game was destined to destroy talent.
Fortunately, the man who loaned his name to Murray Park ensured that arms race would end in spectacular fashion, when he sold his club’s assets and liabilities to a liquidation specialist for £1. In a perverse sort of way, Scottish football should thank him.
Thank you to everyone who supported CQN’s efforts for Glasgow the Caring City and The Cookie Jar Foundation, especially the reader who paid an incredible £530 for the signed European Cup canvas. You are all a credit to our club.
Best wishes to Argentina tomorrow, I hope the overcome Netherlands for the memory of the first worldwide football hero they gave the game, Alfredo Di Stefano.[calameo code=0003901719d82038831a9 lang=en page=126 hidelinks=1 width=100% height=500]