Hamstrung Celtic have to be pioneers


The closing 8 minutes against St Johnstone, after Nir Bitton put Celtic 1-3 ahead, allowed you and me, the manager and the players, to close out a game in a relaxed mood for the first time since the win over Dundee United seven games ago.

The intensity of Celtic’s games in recent months has seen wins over the Tayside trio of St Johnstone, Dundee United and Dundee provide the only relaxed closing moments in 14 games, 11 of which went into the final moment with points or a trophy on the line.  Only twice in that run, at Leverkusen and Paisley, were Celtic denied a win, testament to their ability to get the job done when the chips are down.

There is more to our contagion of hamstring injuries than sheer workload, but we have to consider this factor in assessing why so many players are out with the same injury at the same time.

Hamstring injuries are a curse.  I tore mine (right leg) well over a decade ago, it remains weaker than my left and probably always will be.  The new Hibernian manager, Shaun Maloney, was robbed of unknown triumphs by the failure of his hamstring to fully heal.  It is an injury that lies dormant, then cuts you down as though a sniper was on hand.

The first reaction to a hamstring injury is to check the warm-up.  Muscles need to be carefully stretched before being asked to deliver explosive power.  When an injury happens in the early stages of a game, or of the second half, as Kyogo’s did on Sunday, the warm-up is an obvious place to look, but I honestly doubt this is the case here.  Celtic will be pouring over this issue, every detail will be examined, especially for Kyogo on Sunday.

What you cannot do midseason is set down a base layer of fitness.  Players have to conserve energy in their legs, they do not have time to redevelop their muscle patterns, that is work that is done preseason, although a three week winter break permits a very short window of remedial work.

Preseason 2021-22 was not ideal at Lennoxtown.  The players ended the previous season with no manager in place to lay down his requirements for preseason.  When Ange Postecoglou was eventually appointed, he had to wait weeks before getting to work with the players, not to mention those he was working on signing.

None of this is easy to get right.  Most Celtic players play international football, they usually get to two domestic cup finals, and the club play more European football than any other (it’s true, check it).  All this, while competing until the final kick of the ball.  Celtic are at the bleeding edge of fitness requirements for football players, the parts that bleed first are hamstrings.

It is up to the sports scientists to pioneer and find a fix for this, but the tools they work with leave them little scope until June next year.

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  1. BIG JIMMY on 28TH DECEMBER 2021 12:24 PM


    I hope that the Bhoys on here and their families who have tested positive in recent days quickly recover.










    How can I get a ” TEST” WITHOUT going to my Docs or a hospital …can a buy a TEST KIT in a Chemists ?








    Lateral flow test kits are free at you local chemist.


    Hail Hail,



  3. Paul, perhaps if we converted more chances we wouldn’t have to be so intense for the full 90 mns.



    Work on the finishing required as well as the fitness regime

  4. So, in summary, all the players who have or have had hammy injuries are going to remain vulnerable to recurring injury.



    DT, Jota, Kyogo, Starfelt and co have a future of uncertainty ahead of them. Sure James Forrest can fill them in on the details.

  5. Big Jimmy from St stivs




    Howard Street has a test centre, next door to the priests house.







    you have tobook an appointment time though.

  6. Big Jimmy.



    Dial 119.


    Have your mobile number handy.


    Have an email open when you call them.


    Call and get a test to your address.



    If no phone or email


    Call 119.ask for a test and get one sent to your home via non digital route.



    Hope that helps Jimmy.




  7. Pingback: Hamstrung Celtic have to be pioneers | Celtic FC News Now

  8. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    TOM MCLAUGHLIN from last thread



    Agree – you were not being harsh mate.



    Tongue in cheek from me. No robust challenge to your views.



    A couple of honest efforts by individuals but, overall, England were pathetic.



    When a rank amateur like me who barely knows the laws of the game can see the weaknesses ?



    … you know the game’s up.

  9. Sadly and thanks to the previous huns exposure to Zone7 Artificial Intelligence platforms (via Klopp and Liverpool), we are 2 years behind the Huns on moving beyond myths about warm-ups Paul67.



    But I guess we managed to split up Lawell’s role between other chinless wonders like a CFO and COO.



    Injuries are not down to bad luck and we are still not using all available help in the market to give ourselves the best chance across the club.




  10. I remember James Forrest has lots of prior niggling injuries


    before Fraudgers too over then he was injury free for 3





    Somehow after Fraudgers left his injury niggles have returned



    wonder if its methods used by the mediacl teams in place

  11. Paul



    You forgot to say a larger 1st team ready squad, allowing for rotation of players, also helps.


    Let’s see if the board agrees this transfer window

  12. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Interesting Pablo …



    “It is up to the sports scientists to pioneer and find a fix for this, but the tools they work with leave them little scope until June next year”



    So for it in the second half of the season with new signings (integrated EARLY) reinfusing the squad.



    One of the benefits of auto CL qualification not spoken about often …



    … No qualifiers from early July therefore no preseason starting in June.



    If we do qualify for the CL automatically?



    – use the first 3 league games in August to hone fitness to hit peak in early September.



    – Hand League Cup duties over to the pups, the squad players and any first 11 guy returning from injury and needing a game.



    Oh, and buy early again of course.

  13. Freezing temps still an issue. Do Russian or Ukraine teams get more hammy injuries in winter. What’s their sports science say? What do their athletes do? (Guessing prob fly to warm weather training camp🤣😂) So maybe what did they used to do ? Do we need a lot more sports masseuse? Is there room in away dressing rooms for that? (Guessing not)


    Cramps/tightness happen when dehydrated aswell. Do we hydrate less when it’s cold?

  14. THANK YOU to ALL the Bhoys who posted advice in relation to test Kits earlier.


    My local Pub was very busy yesterday but I managed to keep a safe distance…most of the time, but I am concerned .





    Might try working on set pieces too, our corners are atrocious






    I noticed a distinct improvement against St Johnstone, at least so far as delivery was concerned. The ball was getting to where it should be on a consistent basis. Just need to get the next part right, and some benefit might accrue.

  16. prestonpans bhoys on

    I’ll take everyone’s word for it on the corners, I only saw a bit of the game as I thought it was cancelled😵😱

  17. Agree comments re delivery at corners. Keep Juranovic on that duty.


    We finished the game in Perth with probably our tallest team of the season. Both Scales and Dawson have a bit of height about them. MON always preferred a good big guy to a good wee guy.

  18. BIG WAVY on 28TH DECEMBER 2021 1:30 PM



    So sevco have technology that puts them 2 years ahead of us in the fitness/ injury prevention department, if celtic wanted to purchase same system I don’t think it would take 2 years to benefit from it. If it did take 2 years no team would bother their arse.



    Sorry big guy your talking bullocks. That is not to say celtic’s sport science is good or better than any other team in the league.




  19. Frail ,lightweight players ,being run into the ground and over exerted.


    Lack of quality options to rotate the squad .



    I don’t recall Hartson ,Sutton ,Larson,Petrov ,Thomson ,being plagued by hamstring injuries.



    They played as much football against a higher standard of teams .



    We are fishing in a pool of tadpoles.




  20. Lies, damned lies and injuries



    I take all the injury talk around football with a pinch of salt. How many players get injured nowadays in training sessions? Warming up? Or when they injure themselves on the field of play, with no contact with an opponent. raising their hand simultaneously for the trainer to come on. Not that it bothers me, it’s all part of the game now. Along with rhe bevvy and the bookies. It’s much more of a circus nowadays but I don’t kid myself on.



    Sure bring on the sports scientists with their academic titles but I still prefer Neilly Mochan as a trainer.






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  22. If a club with the resources of Celtic FC is not up to speed, so to speak, with the latest warm-up techniques then there really is something seriously wrong with our back room set-up. As such the answers must be looked for elsewhere as in, is the magic sponge being applied correctly? Or rather, who gets them, who doesn’t, when and why. Against Betis we had two hamstring injuries, Ajeti early doors, his substitute Fyogo, later. Cannot both have the same explanation. Sport science applied, has been able to reduce the number of ankle strains and sprains, though unable to reduce the number of hammer throwers playing in the SPL. Might be worth looking at footwear and sports socks see if there is any connection or benefit to be had there. One thing we should avoid though is what Eddie Howe didn’t last night, which was to allow Calum Wilson, with a non contact muscle injury against a team from Manchester last night, go back onto the pitch, break down again, and then to appeal to the ref re same injury. That is one lesson we can learn.

  23. 9 in a row, a treble treble, weather the same, pitches the same , refs the same, one difference…



    I don’t think our board will be happy with how THEIR assets are getting handled.

  24. Rimtimtim



    I despair at the number of players we have signed over the last 10 years ,that have reoccurring injury problems .



    Our scouts also seem to misread the signals.



    I remember when we were linked with Simunovic ,I pointed out that he missed vital CL qualifying matches ,and that I thought we were signing a young player with a higher risk of injury injury problems.


    Giomakis ( spl) also has missed a lot of matches ,in the seasons before his season in Dutch football.



    Boerighter,Myokolo,glaring errors.



    Decades ago Gary Gillespie.



    The only player that I can recall that overcame an injury and performed well for us is Craig Gordon.




  25. Out injured but cameback to perform 11.



    1. Gordon


    2. McGrain (twice)


    3. KT


    4. Boyata


    5. VVD


    6. Wanyama


    7. Henrik


    8. Stan


    9. Maloney


    10. Hooper


    11. TB

  26. I am meaning players that have had dubious injury records at other clubs ,before we have signed them.




  27. RIMTIMTIM on 28TH DECEMBER 2021 3:57 PM


    Good post Tinytim



    Who is the Celtic trainer anyway? Fitness is not rocket science.






    Aye it is.



    Pals bhoy, 5 years at UoG to attain a Phd in Physotherapty (ah no spelling) specialising in Sports injury rehabilitation.


    I helped him do one dissertation on Office ergonomics and Behaviors.



    His paper was superb.



    Lets be honest none of us really know what we are babbling on about when it comes to these things.








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