Goal shyness hampers Celtic


Overall I was pleased with many aspects of Celtic’s play yesterday.  We dominated large parts of the game and got in and around the Hearts penalty area often enough to score the proverbial barrel load.

Hearts scored a good goal.  The flick from Beattie and run from Skacel were both exquisite, although a deflection off the blameless Kelvin Wilson was crucial.  Enough has been said about the second Hearts goal already.  Defensively we were good.

Midfield also played well, to a point, forcing Hearts into retreat for all but the opening 20 minutes of the second half.  Ki Sung-Yueng should have scored twice but he’s never been a player for back post headers and I was more surprised he found himself in that position than he missed both opportunities.  He is a player who continues to impress.

The question we should turn our attention to is why Celtic didn’t score more goals?

It is probably not an exaggeration to suggest Emilio Izaguirre is the best left back at the club in 30 years.  Skilful and intelligent in possession, Celtic look composed when he is on the field, but he’s being kept out of the team by a free transfer from Aberdeen because Charlie Mulgrew is manufacturing the most crucial item in the game – goals.

I’m close to advocating ‘Give the ball to Charlie’ tactics.  He has the ability to fire in remarkably dangerous crosses and has an instinctive awareness that the purpose of the game is to score goals.  Kris Commons shares this awareness but Kris has had a wretched season and is still rescuing his game from injury and early season loss of form.

In these circumstances, Neil Lennon cannot afford to play Izaguirre if it involves dropping Mulgew as this would severely hamper Celtic’s ability to put the ball in the net.  If the manager wants to use Emilio, particularly in Europe next season when retaining possession will be crucial, Charlie has to play left midfield.

Scoring goals is the primary responsibility of the strikers.  None of Celtic’s current crop are impressing at the moment, but we need to look further upstream first.

We have an outstanding original canvass painting of Neil Lennon available for purchase on eBay to kick start our summer charity fundraising. This year the beneficiaries will be Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, Martin Chambers Foundation and The Neuroblastoma Alliance, Aberdour PS PTA, The Haven, Blantyre. The painting, by US based artist, Joseph Gormley, is an outstanding memento of our manager during these times.

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  1. !!Bada Bing!! on

    PL,please highlight again why Dallas has no (official) position within Scottish football .Thanks.Is it in his remit to criticise clubs/managers?

  2. !!Bada Bing!! at 15:51



    Just saw the highlights of the Doncaster v Portsmouth match and Saunders has every reason to feel aggreived. Neither were penalties and Portsmouth’s equaliser came after their striker palmed the ball into the net with both hands.




  3. Come on Paul you don’t have to drop Chas in order to play Izzy!!!



    If Izzy isn’t fit enough he doesn’t play. Or if NL believes next season is more important he keeps Izzy in cotton wool.



    On the other hand why was he on the bench?

  4. The defence gave me nightmares all day yesterday.


    I didn’t like the look of it from the off althgough both full backs looked OK. The CB’s were too far apart at the start and their was no protection from midfield. Victor would have started in my side to protect the defence. When Beattie came on and the first goal was conceded through the middle Victor should have been brought in to plug that gap. Hearts looked dangerous each time they went through the middle. We played poorly yesterday and nearly got away with it.


    Would we have won in Extra Time? Who knows?


    Celtic looked lacklustre from the off and took ages to get going. Ki may have had two headers but bottled his first challenge and that is unacceptable for me.


    We now move on and look to next season. Win the rest of the games this season and try things out for next campaign. Treble and European run next season please.




  5. !!Bada Bing!! on

    Mort-I seen the highlights of Doncaster v Portsmouth yesterday,the penalties awarded were almost “Scottish like”.HH

  6. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    BMCUWP – you are wrong about ole DB; one of life ‘s good ghuys [but don’t tell him I said it].

  7. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on




    with the HMRC investigating all current SPL referees and also newspaper payments made to ex referees Kenny Clark and Stuart Dougal they have all went to ground.



    It had to be Hugh, it had to be Hugh


    He wandered around, and finally found – the somebody who


    Could make it look true, and could make it look blue


    And even be glad, just to be sad – thinking of what could have been Hugh



    Hail Hail

  8. !!Bada Bing!! on

    IMO the change required was to take off Wilson,put Stokes on.Move Mulgrew to CB,Ledley to LB and Samaras left midfield.

  9. !!Bada Bing!!



    The only problem with that is, it prohibit’s Charlie’s runs down the line when played at centre back.





    BOBBY MURDOCH’S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on 16 April, 2012 at 16:02 said:


    DBBIA 1550



    Good to have you back onsite and onside.



    I think the last time I gave something up for lent was about 30 years ago.






    First Friday night out,I realised I had to give up drinking too-couldnae have a pint without a fag!



    I’ll take my chances with the ole Dick Byrne,he has a holier-than-thou,supercilious manner which I find both unpleasant and undesirable.



    He also seems to lack the requisite underlying sense of humour otherwise prevalent on here.



    But,hey,I could be wrong. Who cares? His opinion is irelevant to me,and mine to him.



    C’est la vie….


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~



    Aye,I do not doubt it. But I also do not doubt the veracity of the above.



    It would be a boring world where we all agreed with each other,and on that point I think we can ALL agree!

  11. enmac, a bampot stands shoulder to shoulder with Neil Lennon on

    Harry Brady ‏ @HarryBradyCU


    Reply RetweetedRetweet




    FavoritedFavorite · Close Open Details So Mr Norris tells his superior that he didn’t actually see hand ball! HFC player reaction plus “guilty look” of Wanyama. GREAT!




    Harry Brady ‏ @HarryBradyCU










    · Close Open Details To avoid 30 answers saying the same thing – my source on Norris quote is impeccable. He would know!






    Will this be another wow moment ?

  12. Any one reading my facebook page will see the constant videos that I post supporting Neil Lennon.


    Visit my dining room you will find a personalised signed print of him.


    I love Neil Lennon.


    I love Glasgow Celtic.


    Yet my love for both does not blind me to the truth.


    Neil Lennons conduct at the end of yesterday’s match was disgraceful.


    He provided a very poor example of self discipline.


    How can he ever tutor a player on his conduct ,when he behaves in such a manner.


    Yes there were mitigating circumstances,but he is The Manager of GCFC.


    He should have much higher standards for himself and the honourable position he holds.


    He behaved like a ranting ,out of control,yob.


    He is of reduced benefit to the team ,sitting in the stand.




    You have won a Scottish Cup and a Championship.


    Keep your ego and anger in check


    You will not go on to be a Celtic great unless you can learn where ,when,and how, to control your temper.


    I want the very best for you and Celtic.



  13. A sneaky wee afternoon New Article.



    If Ki could head a ball we would have won. If Ledley had been in that position he would have scored. If …



    Ironically someone said during the game that Gary Hooper never scored with headers after he missed an earlier chance.

  14. Awe Naw 15.17


    Thank you for link to BRTHs post from RTC ,I had read some of Ian Frasers reports through links on the site but WOW !!!!!!!!!!


    back to reading more of them.



  15. !!Bada Bing!! I agree Stokes has 4 more assists then Mulgrew in the league alone this season and has hit 20 goals to Mulgrews 8 (which is still a class total for a LB/CB).



    So if the argument was for more assists/goals then surely Stokes should have come on earlier.

  16. I was at the match yesterday and at half time gazebo Goldstar10 said he was heading to Ibrokes tonight for the youth game, – that’s what I call a Celtic man.



    Ole Eurochamps67 chimed in he wasn’t giving them the £5.00 that’s also what I call a Celtic man.



    Moan the Hoops

  17. Gordon_J backing Neil Lennon



    How did Stokes not score? I didn’t think we were ever going to score when he missed that one yarder. It was painful viewing yesterday.




  18. Paul67



    Can’t agree on Charlie yesterday. Thought he had a very poor first half. Unlike Killie last week, Hearts closed Charlie down very quickly and he was caught in possession 2 or 3 times early on, which nearly resulted in them scoring. In the first 15mins when Hearts were in the ascendancy, they were targeting Charlie as the ‘weak link’ in our back 4.



    Charlie has had a fine season due to his performances at CH. He should only be used at LB in an emergency. Izzy should have played from the start which would have negated the need to play the bomb scare that is Kelvin Wilson

  19. Gordon_J



    Noticed that during the live updates. The vast majority of Gary’s goals are what would be described as poachers goals and that’s where he is at his best.



    His play in recent weeks has changed as he is coming more and more out the field to help out and to set up play which means that on occasion, he isn’t where he is needed when the ball comes into the box.




  20. timbhoy2 on 16 April, 2012 at 14:09 said:



    Just because I don’t agree with most of your opinion,doesn’t


    mean I want to put one on your Dan Flynn.Though buying


    you a pint may have stretched it.

  21. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on




    completely disagree especially when the cheating is on this scale and this overt. I am glad we have somebody making sure that it is world news headlines.


    You should see someone about that Stockholm syndrome I have told you before




    Hail Hail

  22. Sir Paul



    Ye jist said a Moofull!



    It’s Goals that Coont!






    Sammi, is A loata things.. some Good. Some.. well.. UNPRINTABLE!..


    Howevahhhhh.. He Ain’t No …STRIKER.



    Sammi, should Nevah be played in the “MIDDLE”.. only… oot oan the Left.. were he kin dae his Thing..





    Celtic, took the Field ,Yesterday, at a Big Disadvantage..



    We Played Sammi, as a Striker..



    Right away, we wur a Man Shoart!



    We Played.. Kelvin..



    Right away.. we wur Anither Man Shoart!



    Heck. Ye canny pit oot a team. The Likes of that wan Whit


    Lenny Pit oot.. and Expect it tae Jive!



    Ma Opinion. of Course..



    Ah wid hiv ..



    Drapped. Commons.. fur he is No the same player as he wiz..fur whitevah reason..



    Ah Widda Played Sammi.. on the Left Wing.



    Brought it.. Victor..



    Drapped.. Ki.. fur He is No.. Cup Tie Material. Faur too..


    Namby and Pamby..actually. mair Namby than Pamby!



    Played Charlie .at .. Center Back.. He is Oor Best .



    and Brought in The Kid.. Twardzik.. at Left Back..



    Ma Team






    Adam Twardzik



    Loovens Charlie



    Broonie, Victor , Ledley, Sammi,



    Hooper , Stokesy.





    Still Laughin’






    Happy, as Larry!

  23. Which linesman was at the Hearts penalty end. Because I got the impression it was him that gave the pen to Norris over his earphone?

  24. traditionalist88 on

    Lets not let Ki off the hook completely because he’s never been one for back post headers, utter nonsense. Hoopers not one for headers either but that didnt stop him burying it when Charlie put one on his head yesterday.



    Talking of Charlie he’s doing superbly, Lennon needs to find that imposing striker so we maximise the benefits of Charlies left peg.




  25. Mulgrew should be in central defence with Izzy at left back. Wilson is a bomb scare, especially in the bigger games. His short pass back inside the first 30 seconds summed him up. Rogne and Mulgrew is our best central defensive partnership but Rogne, unfortunately, can’t seem to remain fit for a any run of games. Time for 2 new centre halfs to compete with Rogne/Mulgrew next season, let the rest leave.

  26. Livibhoy@1603


    I would agree with everything you said.


    I would also like to add the tactics up front yesterday.


    I’m not sure Sammi, Hooper and Common understood where they were meant to be playing at times.


    At times you could throw a blanket over them they were so close together.


    Hooper was dropping off to take 2yd passes from Charlie on more than one occasion.


    No width on the left didn’t help matters.


    In the 2nd half A.Thomson shouted Commons over to the bench and told him to go out to the left wing, which he did. About 5mins later he was playing outside right.


    I don’t think Sammi won a ball in the air yesterday. The balls up to him were meat and drink to the Hearts centre halves.




  27. !!Bada Bing!! on

    Mort- Agree,it was possibly getting to the stage of the game to go 3 at the back and push Charlie in to left mid with Samaras left wing.All water under the bridge i know…….

  28. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    The downside of the goals hoopslegend Charlie Mulgrew is creatin’ bombin’ down the wing like a bombed up bomber is the goals we concede when he’s not playin’ centre half , especially alongside hoopslegend Tomas Rogne.



    ‘You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong’ DBBIA Abraham Lincoln CSC

  29. Awe naw



    I understand why you would disagree.


    But he cannot discipline a player who conducts himself in a similar manner,if and when that arises in the future.


    That for me means he has weakened his effectiveness as a manager.


    I want him to be more effective not less.





  30. traditionalist88 on 16 April, 2012 at 16:23 said:


    Talking of Charlie he’s doing superbly, Lennon needs to find that imposing striker so we maximise the benefits of Charlies left peg.



    Exactly. The balls from both fullbacks yesterday were begging to be attacked. Lustig’s delivery, whilst not as good as Charlie’s, was very good.

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