Huge decision ahead for Neil Lennon


When they dispensed with Unai Emeri last weekend, Spartak Moscow brought to an end an experiment to bring sophistication to their team.  New caretaker manager, Valeriy Karpin, was manager immediately before Emeri, was also the man who appointed Emeri and stood over him as general manager of the club since moving from the dugout in the summer.

Karpin relies more on his strong, authoritative, personality than tactical innovation, which is likely to mean we face a more disciplined team in Glasgow next week that we faced in Moscow – there will be no brothel at the back.

My main concern is that the Kilmarnock/St Johnstone/Inverness tactics of defending solidly and taking their chances when going forward is perfectly suited for Karpin’s Spartak.  Against Benfica and Barcelona at home, Neil Lennon played it tight and incredibly tight respectively, which proved to be excellent decisions.  He has a huge call to make against Spartak, playing an adventurous game could leave us exposed.

This result is not to be taken for granted.

CQN Annual – perfect Christmas present

It was some comfort to see Celtic back on form last night, especially down the flanks, which were crucial in Moscow and could prove to be so again next week.  Hopefully the knocks and strains which have hampered the squad in recent weeks are beginning to fade ahead of our Christmas Cup Final.

Fancy writing an article for the next edition of CQN Magazine, due out after the Spartak game? Get in touch, celticquicknews@gmail.com.

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  1. swatson Neil Lennon's 6ft skinny twin! on

    From previous thread!



    Provo songs are not part of our heritage! Irish folk songs belt them out all day I love them. I’m Scottish and I don’t sing Scottish political songs at games so why would I want to sing or even hear Irish political songs!

  2. Paul67



    As I posted at end of previous article, that mob are self destructing from the boardroom right through to the fans.



    Ours to lose…

  3. Hope Spartak bring the brothel with them next week!



    The players do need some ‘ chill out’ time!




  4. Even if we fail at the last hurdle this season has been a massive success. Very young team which has got the club (and themselves) massive positive exposure.



    Living outwith Scotland the Barca result has has been ‘up there’ with our CL home win v MU and then some. All the football lovers thought the stadium, fans and result were awesome.



    I think we’ll have enough to go the extra mile next week.

  5. swatson Neil Lennon’s 6ft skinny twin!



    12:57 on 29 November, 2012




    ‘Provo songs are not part of our heritage!’




    You think BOTOB is a Provo song?

  6. I saw no reason to presume that the Spartak tie would be any easier than the previous two home ties against Benfica and Barcelona, even before the change of manager. It’s even more of a challenge now that they’re drawing a line under Emeri’s failure and starting afresh .

  7. Although delighted to get back on the winning trail, especially agaist the Jambos, anybody else think we were a wee bit fortunate that big Fraser had a dream game, even came and collected a few corners. Still think we need a creative midfielder when we’re not doing the business down the flanks. Hopefully Spartak will dissolve in front our fans frenzy next week…not an easy game.

  8. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on

    I see there’s a couple of huns dog determined to have their say on the songs sung by Celtic supporters, here’s a thought ya pair a clowns, see when you hear the songs you don’t like, turn the telly/radio off or put your fingers in your ears and sing yer anthem.

  9. swatson Neil Lennon’s 6ft skinny twin!


    12:57 on


    29 November, 2012


    From previous thread!



    Provo songs are not part of our heritage! Irish folk songs belt them out all day I love them. I’m Scottish and I don’t sing Scottish political songs at games so why would I want to sing or even hear Irish political songs!





    I’ve sang a few Provo songs in the past but I bet even ex-Provos don’t even sing such songs nowadays. We’ve got loads more to sing about.

  10. paul67




    i think spartak have the 2nd best squad in our group



    and karpin is a better manager



    i fear tho we missed our chance in lisbon



    to an ordinary benfica side who have a better squad than us



    very rarely do u get two chances at this level

  11. Paul67 – Spartak are going to have to go some to get by The Wall! Great form just now.



    On the ASDA thing…..do you think they’ll have a new slogan/catchphrase?



    My favourite advert was ol’ Eva Hertzigova and the `Hello Bhoys’ one. Magnificent cup action!! ;-)

  12. The ‘Song’s’ debate……again.



    I have a novel idea.



    If you don’t want to sing them don’t.



    If other people do, that’s there prerogative!



    Freedom of speech and all that. eh!

  13. No reason to go all-out v Spartak for a win.



    Barca will pump Benfica.



    A draw would see us through. Keep it tight with an eye on the Nou Camp.

  14. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on



    Disagree, get the job done this end then worry about Barca game.

  15. It won’t be an easy game at all and we can’t afford to take Spartak lightly. Even though they have nothing to play for in terms of the group they will want to show what they can do. Sometimes when a club is in disarray the players take pout their frustrations on the pitch and performance levels rise.



    I won’t comment on red light defending, other than to say that if you can’t score there …

  16. Auldheid



    ’This £5.5m deal resulted in the newco being unsuccessful in applying to become a member of Scottish Premier League, before being forced to start life in the Third Division while the Scottish Football Association transferred Rangers’ membership to it.’



    Is that statement true? I thought that the oleco membership was handed to Dundee and newco were given a separate membership.



    Even if that is true would it make any difference? Does retaining the oldco membership give any credence to Greens attempts at continuity?



    Thanks in advance.

  17. I believe a point against Spartak will be good enough. We should approach the game positively yet sensibly, not throwing caution to the wind. We will be aware of the Barca game as the night progresses and will know how we need to react accordingly, though we need to play to win from the start. Spartak will not dominate the play and we will have decent possession. If we need a hell for leather finish, all 12 men are capable of delivering it. The last 16 beckons, though if it doesn’t it will still be a good achievement and let’s not get sucked into what the MSM may try to label as failure. They’ve already had a mini field day this week trying to blow up the events of last Saturday.

  18. Afternnoon, excellent result and performance last night , like the look of Lassad , another well taken goal and some good link up play. Lustig is now settled into 1st choice right back , and Kayal is benefitting from playing week in week out. Big FF did his job superbly with some great saves.



    Looking at the saves Fraser made two were from fre kicks where the wall did not do its job , resulting in direct shots , hopefully big Fraser will now work on the wall being solid and he will not need to make the saves.



    For Spartak I would go solid and ensure we do not lose an early goal to a counter attack , slowly build up some presuure and capitalise on set pieces, easy this football manager.



    Big choices for Neil , does he go with his tried and trusted or does Lassad get a start or Miku who was excellent against Barca. Both players with a good first touch and who will retain possesion.


    Who do you pick at left back Charlie for his delivery or Adam for his pace .


    decisions decisons

  19. I surmise that some of the Spartak boys may not feel the need to give their all for the cause – to salvage the clubs reputation- considering the fans they’re playing for apparently attacked the team bus.



    Regardless, our bhoys cannot- and Im sure will not- even think about relying on help from elsewhere. Im sure Lenny will let them know its down to them to ensure we progress to the latter stages.

  20. Paul



    while not having a great memory of the tactics deployed in the previous european games I thought last night was the most open I have seen Celtic play under Neil.I enjoyed it but it did take a lot of muscle from the players who adapted well and showed thier worth. Fear not to much if he opts for an adventure formation against Spartak.

  21. Steinreignedsupreme on

    Paul 67 –



    The Spartak game will take care of itself. The players have adapted well for most of the Champions League games – I don’t think any of the staff at Celtic will take the game for granted.

  22. izzy



    Statement is mostly true.



    It was Rangers share in the SPL that was transferred to Dundee. Sevco had wanted the share transferred to them but this was blocked by SPL members.



    The SFA membership is different and this transfer enabled Sevco to become a member of the SFA and take up its place in the SFL. The best and fairest solution when a space became available in the SFL would be to invite applications from any interested football team and allow a vote to be taken on who got the slot. As it was, Sevco were given special dispensation to gain entry into SFL.



    I dislike the use of the phrase “before being forced to start life in the Third Division” as in effect a new club was given special permission to get into the SFL at the expense of good clubs like Spartans who have been going for a long time.




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