“I pick the team” manager tales, EFL bubble ready to pop


There is an apocryphal tale that when Jim McLean was manager of Dundee United, a 12-year-old wrote to him to dispute team selection.  McLean, so the legend goes, drove straight to the senders address and on being introduced to the boy on the doorstep, stated, “I pick the team”, before turning on his heels and leaving.

When Neil Lennon and his former mentor Gordon Strachan coordinated a Man of the Match nomination for Scott Brown yesterday, it struck me that this was the modern equivalent of a McLean door-stepping.  Neil Lennon picks the team and his MotM quote was him letting you know where authority lies.  It’s not a McLean-level anecdote but is no less a classic of the genre.

Today, 10 MPs, two former chairmen of the FA and others, wrote to the Government asking for a taxpayer handout for the English Football League (EFL).    They note:

“Without any plans being made to rescue football clubs, many in the EFL and others in the National League as well, are now actively preparing to make all but essential staff redundant, cease playing, close down their youth academies and community foundations, and put their business into administration.

“This could lead not only to the failure of many historic community clubs, but the collapse of the national league structure that we have known for over one hundred years.  These are decisions that will be made in the coming weeks, with many clubs unable to meet their payroll obligations for next month.”

The EFL still hope for a rescue package from the Premier League.  They are also pushing the Professional Players Association, the players’ union, to make massive concessions on wages that were never affordable in normal times.  But right now, football in England outside the top flight is unviable this season.

Since the start of the pandemic, I have noted the precarious position of the EFL.  Chances of the existing structure surviving have never been slimmer and probably never will.  This bubble is ready to pop!

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  1. GENE on 29TH SEPTEMBER 2020 9:19 AM



    They’ve got ipox, Victorian lavvy or snake mountain..




    To me the huns sulk in Greyskull.



    HH Kirsty McCabe.



    PS to all : Let’s not dwell on the merits of Greyskull or Snake Mountain. That topic is even more contentious than the ” Moon Landings “



    Lurking and have logged on for a moan




    Our home is Celtic Park. The habit of referring to it as ‘Parkhead’ is, in my humble opinion, a media influenced thing whereby, as they do when linking us with the G51 clubs, they refer to the respective homes by their geographical location. The habit has caught on and become general practice.




    A bit like the common Scottish usage of the term ‘chapel’ for Catholic churches, as opposed to the ‘Church’ which they use for the C of S.




    I’m in my late 50s and neither me or any of my associates use or ever have used the term ‘Parkhead’.








    You’re not comparing like with like.




    Billy McNeill was, in the summer of 1983, apparently not in the three best Paid managers in Scotland. He was entitled to ask for a pay rise and as you rightly say should not have been treated the way he was.




    The manager who left us in spring 2019 was effectively working his ticket for the best part of a season and when all is considered, left the club in the lurch.




    No one could ever say that about Billy McNeill.





    Growing up in the 50s and 60s in Coatbridge, it was always Parkhead. No one ever called it Celtic Park. I read an interview with Shir Sean Connery, during his first NIAR and when he was still a Celtic supporter, where he said, “I always call it by its proper name ‘Celtic Park’ and never refer to it as ‘Parkhead’.” Strangely enough, that influenced me and I’ve pretty much done the same ever since.

  3. Mornin all



    I don’t think the use of Parkhead is a construct of the MSM



    I first travelled from Greenock in 1962 and the destination was universally described as Parkhead, with Paradise as a subsidiary.



    Celtic Park is, of course, the official name but we hardly used it back in the day.




  4. Extract from a sad song which maybe contributed to the naming convention:



    I took a trip to Parkhead, to the dear old Paradise,


    When the teams made their appearance, sure the tears came to my eyes,



    HH the Prince of Goalies

  5. Back in the 70’s , i thought the ground was was called Parkead. I think I learned that it was ‘Celtic Park’ from the football magazine SHOOT , ( they used to have a team profile every week)


    Even though i had this new information i continued to call it Parkhead as i thought calling it Celtic Park was a tautology.



    When Fergus arrived and always referred to our ground as ‘Celtic Park’, i thought it a tautology. Tommy Burns always referred to us as ‘Celtic Football Club’, at the time I confess I thought both a little quirky , and unnecessary.



    I rarely refer to Rangers by name, Forces of Darkness, Devils Spawn, Oldco, DeadCo, Newco, etc.


    I realised that many Huns also avoid using the word Celtic. I noticed that this extended to the media. ( The ones who always say Rangers and Celtic- never Celtic and Rangers – who generalise a question about Celtic into an answer about the ‘Old Firm’ even though the question was about us)




    Fergus used Celtic Park always with interviewers, make them say the word, make them write it down, make them use it at every opportunity.


    I noticed that Huns in work were slightly irritated .


    It was then that got fully on board with Fergus I have used Celtic Park since.



    When i hear Celtic fans say… ” it’ll always be Parkhead ” it doesn’t annoy me so much as it used to. However I always remind them that if for no other reason than winding up Huns , at least use it when in their company.



    We have many Celtic songs which refer to Glasgow Celtic, they are great songs , but they annoy me a little. We are not just one of the many Celtic football teams in world football.


    We are Celtic.


    We do not need to clarify ,who we are, by saying Glasgow Celtic.



    There are many Open Golf Championships around the world.


    The US Open, Irish Open, Scottish Open, etc.


    The R&A never , ever, refer to the British Open…..


    It is always


    “The Open Championship”



    We are the first ,the original,



    Celtic Football Club ( I hear you now Tommy )



    We are Celtic.



    Other point….


    Naming rights should never be sold.


    I see posters saying things like


    ” let’s take the money , I’ll always call it Celtic Park ( or Parkhead)”



    We also choose stadium names that we would like.


    The Adidas Celtic Park


    The Guinness Stadium etc.



    Look at Livingston Almondvale Stadium has previously benn called


    City Stadium ( City Group sponsorship)


    West Lothian Courier Stadium


    Tony Macaroni Stadium



    Think of the worst sponsorship association you imagine , and imagine that name stuck as a Prefix to Celtic.


    Some things should not be for sale , at any price.


    The Celtic jersey should never have been sullied by sponsorship …at any price.



    The Onlooker

  6. The only other football ground in the world that I can think of with the same dilemma as us over its name is the one shared by Inter and AC. Most people know it as the San Siro but it’s actually the Giuseppe Meazza Stadium. It stands in the San Siro area of Milan. Similarly, though no longer in existence, West Ham’s old ground was always referred to as Upton Park but many Hammers fans referred to it as the Boleyn Ground.

  7. From rutherglen we would say we were going ‘ower by’…as in “are you gaun ower by oan saturday?”


    But it doesn’t really matter what we call it, does it?

  8. Three ex Celtic left backs all started for their clubs last night . Tierney struggled against Mo Salah. Andy Roberston gifted a goal for Arsenal and Aaron Hickey got subbed after an eventful debut for Bologna






    Danny Fox CSC

  9. What’s in a name.




    What’s in a name? that which we call a rose


    By any other name would smell as sweet;


    So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call’d,


    Retain that dear perfection which he owes


    Without that title.



    Juliet CSC

  10. “Parkhead” is used to describe Celtic Park, so the word Celtic is not overused, and given continual prominence.



    In the late 50’s and early 60’s it was The Rangers that was used in the press at the time, strange they don’t use that now, wonder why?? :)).



    It’s much the same as Rangers new signing jetting in, were as Celtic’s was coming up the road or arriving.



    Does the Scotland National Team or are Cup Finals held in a stadium called Mount Florida?



    Celtic Park, is situated in Parkhead, Glasgow.



    Remember too Walter of no surname, and Mr Struth, never Bill Struth, or it was Boris and Corbyn never Johnson and Jeremy, small details but very relevant in the bigger picture as to how people perceive things, if you use Parkhead to describe Celtic Park, you’re not some big bad person, or less a fan, but you have totally fallen for the way they want you to think, por cierto.

  11. Really enjoying the Blog today.






    Enjoyed your posts last night. I don’t know if you have a source who gives you information about what is happening/ has happened inside Celtic Park and the machinations that have gone on between PL, DD, BR, MON, NL etc or if you hear, read snippets of information from a variety of sources and link them to events that have occurred and draw your own conclusions but I always read your posts. I don’t take them as sacrosanct but they are always worth a read and provide food for thought.

  12. While we’re on the subject of pet hates in the use of words – I’m weary of people that use the term Roman Catholic as opposed to Catholic.



    I’ve mischievously told people in the past that I’m an Irish Catholic and have no Italian blood that I’m aware off when they used the term. It didn’t go down well :)

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