Implicit backing for Neil after a long 48 hours


It was a long 48 hours before yesterday’s statement from chief exec, Peter Lawwell.  He explicitly acknowledged “hurt, disappointment and frustration following the team’s recent results”, but the implicit backing was there for “Neil, the players and the backroom staff”.

I have been critical of Neil’s decision in recent weeks, team plans change every hour but we do not appear to know how fix the fundamental problem.  What actually is wrong? is a harder question to answer than it appears.  It was not playing three at the back (or four), nor was choosing one player over another.  If only it was as simple as a solitary scapegoat in the team.  There is bigger question: Is the problem actually the manager?

It could be.  Responsibility to fix team structure certainly lies with Neil, but there are doubtlessly other things going on that few of us are aware of.  Neil carries the can, but he would be gone if the board thought that was all there is to the story.

Winning the league is going to take a huge effort this month and successful recruitment next month.  Having been denied the opportunity to scout players during the spring and summer, a great deal of work has gone into preparing for January.  Do the club have faith in this work?  Would another manager ‘put his name’ to those targets blind?

Your recruitment strategy goes out the door with the manager.  My suspicion is the club weigh the need for squad additions higher than changing the manager.  These are the questions that separate those who are paid the big bucks from those who write blogs.  Thankfully……

Celtic: Fifty Flags Plus One, an anthology of how Celtic won each of their league titles, is available now.  Starting with our first title in 1893, it details how Willie Maley brought consistent glory, then the sparse successes over four decades before Jock Stein arrived in 1965 and the more contemporary wins since.

It will rekindle memories you had forgotten and give insight into how the leagues were won.

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  1. Why would we need more squad additions when there are so many we don’t play?



    Looks like they want to string this out until January, when it’s oh-so-difficult-to-sign-quality–players. And by then the 10 will be gone, John Kennedy will be caretaker and there’s no point spending until a permanebt manager comes in.



    If you never were a cynic, this crowd would make you one.

  2. Hazard


    Ralston Julien Welsh Taylor


    Turnbull Soro Laxalt


    Frimpong Griff Eduoard



    Julien , only because no-one else.

  3. Bhoy From The Boyne on

    What will the atmosphere will be like Sunday if we don’t beat St.Johnstone….or any other games this December which is highly likely given our form.

  4. BIG WAVY on 2ND DECEMBER 2020 2:17 PM



    It depends on whether the SFA adopt the same criteria as the bodies in England



    Hopefully they see that there’s a problem in the EPL that doesn’t exist up here, with clubs like Chelsea signing up a heap of young players from abroad with no real expectation of them ever making the first team squad

  5. Is there even a shred of direct evidence that PL signed players other than the mischief making comments made by BR in his final few days.



    People are listing screeds of past and present players . Surely one of them would make a comment that they only met the manager after they were signed.

  6. squire danaher on

    Team selection for tomorrow night?





    Frimpong Jullien Ajer Laxalt


    Broon McGregor


    Christie Rogic Edouard





    Time for this shower of frauds to get their collective fingers out and play for their manager who they all insist at every opportunity they all still love.

  7. Go tell the Spartim on

    Would you trust any of the current “scouting team” to get decent additions in January



    So what happens if we capitulate even further by then answers on a postage stamp




    You mean, let’s ignore the evidence that there is? The hard evidence? I can think of at least two players – Shved and Arzani – who he knew nothing about but were foisted on him. That’s two we KNOW of. I don’t believe for one second he would have signed Malumba, the ex Killie boy.



    That’s Rodgers. Lennon? There’s no direct evidence but at least one newspaper has said that he didn’t want Duffy, and we can ignore that because of the source – although Lawwell gave his last sit-down interview to that paper and briefed them on the board’s stance this weekend.



    But the circumstantial evidence is piled up the Celtic Park windows, the sheer number of players we’ve signed who the manager’s didn’t start and haven’t used … tell me that Rodgers and Lennon were involved in the process and signed off on some of these guys and I’ll tell you the moon is made of cheese.



    And if you need further evidence, Paul’s article today makes it plain that the manager’s involvement in scouting and signing is minimal and that no reputable coach would accept that policy.



    It’s a fact. I regard it as a fact. I don’t even question it any longer, I accept it as one of the realities at Celtic Park.




    “In short, no wonders who’s hand is up my arse.”



    I am now. Who’s is it?




    As I mentioned earlier, I do occasionally enjoy your posts and writing style. Just cut down on the “In short, no wonders who’s hand is up my arse.”






    RC on 2ND DECEMBER 2020 2:25 PM





    Ralston Julien Welsh Taylor



    Turnbull Soro Laxalt



    Frimpong Griff Eduoard



    Julien , only because no-one else.



    I’d pay to get in to watch,

  11. I would also ask Paul 67 to rescind the red for Big Jimmy.



    It take 2 ( or 4 as the case may be ) to tango. I have seen much, much, much worse on here over the years.


    EG : The moonhowler shift used to be x rated, so much so that moderators had to be introduced.



    These are unprecedented times and the blog is not immune to mental health and isolation issues.



    We need to help our own, not kick them when they are down.



    So Paul 67 this chump asks you to please reconsider.




  12. James Forrest @ 1240



    Regarding Paul67 showing his readers some respect:



    He allows you to post a link to your blog even though you are continually giving him grief, and I’m pretty sure you have received many readers off of Paul’s back.



    I think it’s maybe time you learned a bit about respect.



    Peace ✌️



    P.S I’m not sure if you will get to read this as I’m sure I read a few days ago you were never, ever coming back on the blog again!

  13. I am worse than James Forrest with my `Cheerios` then I am back on again minutes later !!


    Ayway, this is not football related ( directly, anyway).







    Any views on changes which will ( or not) occur because of the latest news on the Covid vaccine?

  14. Will anyone be surprised when Laxalt’s early promise peters out as he becomes used to Celtic’s training and coaching methods?



    In Lenny’s current stint, he has not made one single player that I can think of a better player. No signing has made a lasting impact. Pretty much all of the established players are regressing. No one is coming through.



    But let’s give him more money to spend.

  15. Greenpiñata



    I concur. Even though his dug, that I thought was a dug, was a cat!



    HH jg

  16. Geebee.


    The point that I was making is that if sevco are good enough to beat Porto then they are good enough to beat hamiton, Ross county, st mitten etc. I don’t see them dropping a lot of points. If we drop another 10 points between now and the end of the season then they have to drop 15.

  17. garygillespieshamstring on

    Will James Forrest be cancelling his season tickets or asking for refunds as he urges the rest of us to do or is it still the case that he wasn’t going to games or have a season ticket?

  18. Neil Lennon…



    For 20 years, I have done everything in my power to bring success to the club and the fans,”



    “That is not going to change on the run of a bad month or people being upset by my style of management.



    “It only takes a flick of the switch. I think we are lacking a little bit of confidence, a little bit of belief. But it can turn around very quickly and then it is baby-steps after that, build, build, build, build.

  19. So lets say 10 players have been signed by the Chief exec and foisted upon the Manager.



    Why is there ZERO direct quotes from player or Manager on this subject. I would have thought there would have been at least one person would have made a comment.

  20. Deniabhoy,



    Laxalt is an absolute workhorse with no discernible attacking qualities as such.



    That is exactly what his scouting report would have said as we are getting exactly what we bought.







    Well I’ve heard Lennon, Delia and Rodgers all say that they know how the club works.



    I know Rodgers didn’t particularly LIKE how that side of the club worked.



    But it would be mad to do a job and not know the conditions under which you were taking it.



    So perhaps that’s why they never complain?

  22. There is a massive and ongoing debt of gratitude owed by so many to Neil Lennon, Peter Lawwell, Brendan Rodgers, Dermot Desmond, Ian Bankier et al……and I’m not talking about history making trebles, or 9 in a row repeats.



    I’m talking about where the club is now, the organisation, the performances and the plans for the rest of the season.



    As if by magic this small group have ensured a huge increase in the volume of leaders/posts/comment on the internet. It has probably enhanced beyond the realms of desire, the reputation of some; it has seen a massive uptake of synonyms, similes and metaphors for “you useless bunch of tw…”. Oxymorons and personifications have exploded in imagination and variety.



    So many are due a ‘A’ pass in English Language thanks to those in charge and on the park.



    Advertisers are rubbing their hands in glee as well as 5 hits a day in an era of unalloyed success have been vanquished and it has appeared at times that DOS attacks on websites and blogs are underway as thousands upon thousands race to throw bodies on the bonfires of the vanities.



    Celtic’s performances of late may very well, in this miserable epoch of viral assault, have save the commercial sector from utter oblivion.



    Just a thought….don’t get angry with me…I’m a wilting wallflower.



    Meanwhile my word of today is “Retromingent” which means being able to urinate backwards…..Surely of use in some analyses of Celtic’s pronosis.



    Hail Hail




  23. NOTTHEBUS on 2ND DECEMBER 2020 2:49 PM


    ‘So lets say 10 players have been signed by the Chief exec and foisted upon the Manager.







    Why is there ZERO direct quotes from player or Manager on this subject. I would have thought there would have been at least one person would have made a comment.’






    Players wouldn’t necessarily know, and managers contracts would prevent them from saying.

  24. garygillespieshamstring on




    My memory is that is that you stated on your blog that you had stopped attending games a couple of years ago. I assumed that is still your position.



    Sincere apologies if I am wrong in that.

  25. Seems it does arouse some interest from the Authorities if a football club is not paying its taxes:-



    ” The Scottish Premiership club has called in forensic accountants to carry out what they call a “thorough review of a number of areas of its operations”.



    The Paisley club which is currently 11th in the top tier of Scottish football, said it has informed both HM Revenue and Customs and Police Scotland over the irregularities.



    St Mirren chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick said that the club will “be co-operating to the fullest extent with any investigations.”



    It comes as St Mirren has been moving to become the latest fan-owned football club through a unique link-up – the first of its kind in the UK – between the club’s supporters’ trust and one of the country’s biggest charities. “

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