Insights from strategically huge window


Having rested nine players from Sunday, last night’s result and performance was inconceivably good.  There were several star performers but I thought Anthony Ralston and David Turnbull put in shifts that may go below radar, but were both outstanding.

Callum McGregor made the most of his freedom to move forward to catch the County defence sleeping at a corner kick.  The unlikely amount of space he had inside the box was punished with remarkable simplicity.

Giorgos Giakoumakis did what Giorgos Giakoumakis does.  He was a handful for the home defence throughout, taking some industrial treatment in the process, but got his goal and could have added more.

Sead Haksabanovicat hasn’t played in 12 weeks and only signed with Celtic a week ago.  I did not expect to see him until near the end of September and, during the game, was adamant his was on the subs bench only to help him integrate with the squad.

I am happy to put a caveat before what I’m going to suggest, specifically, this Celtic team could make you or I look good, but what an impressive 15 minutes we saw of him last night.  He is direct, can cross and shoot, and was always available.  He is a player.

You and I have been doing this stuff on deadline day for a long time.  Never have we been so chilled out.  Never has the Celtic squad looked so complete.  Never have the “just one more player would guarantee the league” brigade been so prosaic.  In that time, we have seen a lot of great Celtic teams, several sides that progressed to the knockout stages of the Champions League and completed four trebles.

For years, Callum McGregor played more football than any other player on the planet.  He coped admirably, but this did his development and longevity in the game no favours.

Oliver Abildgaard is a defensive mid in the peak of his career who may become the third capture from our development club in the east.  Whether he arrives or not, you have never seen as comprehensive a Celtic squad.

One more thing, as Columbo used to say.  I am very familiar with the precarious finances across the city, which continue to underpin our second successive Generation of Domination.  But even I’m surprised at their lack of transfer spend so far this window.  Has financial realism finally reached Ibrox after 34 years of havoc?

Let’s not tempt provenance, there are hours left and all this strategic stuff will feel inappropriate if the result doesn’t go our way on Saturday (it will only feel that way), but despite A Europa final, Champions League group stage and all those player sales, this window indicates the depths of their problems.

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  1. PeterLatchfordsBelly on

    I had actually forgotten about Mark Lawwell, which is telling in itself. I did say when he came in that if he’s good enough for Ange that will do me. Looks like he’s doing a good job on all available evidence.



    PS the asset stripping of Rubin Kazan is so smart in every respect, including the bottom line.

  2. CaddingtonCommon on

    Just read back. Great to have all football talk.


    Re CalMac, IMO he is one of the main reasons (AP aside) that we are where we are at this moment in time.


    Hail Hail


    Stay Safe

  3. P67 — yes we are doing well but you have to go and waste it with your fandan / happy clapper / board friendly hyperbole — if we could repeat the 2013 miracle of VVD and JD turning up then it might be warranted but please try and keep it real.



    OA — he must be a sign that football is about to disappear down a rabbit hole.


    He has a series of highlight reels that wouldn’t get him a game for RC.


    No matter we need more energy and presence in the MF.



    In AP we trust — might fire up JMcC and get him thinking about football rather than his latest building project(s).



    Big Jimmy buying a new computer, firestick and gallons of beer for me tomorrow. Happy days ya old scattercash! 🍻🤣




    I am more than happy to buy you Gallons of Beer mate…..But I will NOT let you have a shot on my new computer.





  5. P67 — we need a CB starter to finish off a very successful summer.


    Getting one of the B Team CF’s up to first team speed would be great as well.



    RC game — the ball was needing oxygen after 93 minutes.


    It was kicked stupid from the off.



    All action game — where do RC get all their big fermer / egg chasing types?


    Every sub was bigger than the last — all that was missing was the cage.

  6. Sky saying MJ is off to Vitoria Guimaraes on loan. No mention of an option to buy. Good luck, Mikey.

  7. Panic over Re lost passport for Warsaw trip !



    Good for Mikey J to get the chance to grow up a bit in a decent environment in northern Portugal. Nice club.



    I remember a great away win there back in the days when that rarely happened. Late 90s ish. Excellent trip only slight snag was John Clark ( who was kit man at the time ) hadn’t checked out the size of the opening for the kit hamper to get onto the plane. This team plane was delayed heading out by 2 hours whilst an alternative selection of smaller kit hampers were located.

  8. I see the Huns new star Lawrence is out for 6 weeks which I would have thought might trigger some transfer action.



    So the vile Arfield will be getting more game time. Or the detested ( by them and us ) Jack perhaps ?

  9. Normally there is a BBC Scotland thread on deadline day Re transfers. Funny they don’t seem to have that today.

  10. Bullie Clifford Gilmour.



    Actually been at Chelsea now for 6 years (already)


    be fair to him, first 3 seasons spent classed as Chelsea U23 squad.



    Total First team games between Chelsea and Norwich loan – 50 games in 3 seasons (fifty)



    £10 million Chelsea to Brighton.



    Having come to Chelsea from Sevco on a development fee, I would doubt they would get a windfall sell on fee, I might be wrong,



    but seriously 10 million, if only he had stayed with ra ragers.




    he has 15 caps for scotland an awe.

  11. AN DÚN on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2022 4:46 PM


    SKy Sports reporting their understanding that the huns will not be adding to the squad today.






    I hope that’s true – it will create massive hun rage as they have become so used to indiscipline and largess.



    Can’t bothered looking but I assume FF will be awash with entitled tears…

  12. I’ve been asking for a defensive midfielder with physicality and Height for months. So happy that Ange and I see eye to eye. He’s building a team with familiarity in terms of friendships and language. – very important to get players settled in!



    How do you keep them happy? Well, clearly from yesterdays performance from the second picks, they are fully involved in the game planning and preparation – the transition was seamless. Also, being in 4 competitions helps too for game time. No player is guaranteed a start , this competition will keep their levels high.



    Looking forward to Saturday – my only concern is the ref. Ange instructions will be to make him an irrelevance.

  13. After the Kilmarnock keeper was named in Sky’s TOTW,Sky are leased to announce,Manager Of The Month,


    Jack Ross.

  14. Half man / half poultry / complete muppet @ 4.59



    Who’s asking you?



    Midnight Express — the musical.


    Away and start writing it.


    Something useful.

  15. BURNLEY78 on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2022 4:38 PM


    So funny


    When we go through a tricky spell or don’t deal with a situation as fans might like we keep hearing Lawwell hand is behind everything and he is still involved. When it is good we hear it is because he is not involved.


    Same for his son. Who has something to do with recruitment in and moving players out I believe ?


    This seems to be an area most seem happy with but his name seems to never get mentioned.




    It seems obvious that Lawwell isn’t involved.


    We are now being run in a modern ambitious way.


    Biggest indicator?


    All the signings are first team ready.


    No projects signed.

  16. If Sevco sign no-one today you have to wonder how they would have reacted if they had lost to PSV and ended up in the Europa Cup and much less prize money accumulated.



    Van Bronckhorst predicted ‘crazy times’ for his club at the end of the transfer window.


    I don’t think that implied signing nobody.


    I can’t see him being happy with his board.

  17. Had a weelook on FF



    This seems fairly representative of the mood:




    I get what you’re saying but it’s not just Bassey and Aribo is it?


    We sold Patterson and loaned out Zukowski meaning we have an untested 19 year old as cover for Tav.


    We’ve resorted to playing Barisic who hasn’t been good enough for a while now, while our £5m replacement for Bassey warms the bench. We’re playing a DM at CB because we let Balogun go and signed a career-long crock in John Souttar while even our fan media can’t decide what’s wrong with Davies.


    Arguably our best player Morelos can’t even be arsed to get himself fit or stay on the park and has to be sat down and spoken to like a wee boy while the media hear everything about it.


    It’s alright saying how many players do we expect but we are a couple more injuries away from being fucked while that lot could probably put out two separate starting 11s and still see off most of the league.


    Every time we get into a position of strength we fall asleep at the wheel.

  18. SFA statement –


    Applications for the position of SFA compliance officer should be submitted via applicants’ local lodges and not direct to the SFA

  19. LAMBERT14 on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2022 5:59 PM



    “No projects signed.”



    I’m not sure what you class as a project but three summers ago we signed Frimpong and Connell, two summers ago we didnt sign any projects.



    Last Summer after PL left we signed Shaw, Orhughide and Connell.

  20. Who knows whether we’ve changed our model or not since last Summer. I think its unlikely, stupid almost given the silly fees that clubs pay for young promising talent.



    You only have to look what happened with Bassey to see projects are a worthwhile gamble.

  21. Big Wavy…thanks for the highlights reel on the big Dane. Guy looks like a very nimble tank 😂 Mibbe prone to diving in but he does hav a sweet left peg…would prefer he could peel a tomato with it & not open a can…saying that he wouldn’t b coming to us if he could 🤔




  22. CELTIC40ME on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2022 6:30 PM


    LAMBERT14 on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2022 5:59 PM


    “No projects signed.”


    I’m not sure what you class as a project but three summers ago we signed Frimpong and Connell, two summers ago we didnt sign any projects.


    Last Summer after PL left we signed Shaw, Orhughide and Connell.




    The problem arose when the club was signing projects and squad players at the expense of first team ready players.


    All 3 projects you mentioned were agreed while Lawwell was CEO.


    For every project who became an intrinsic part of the first team, ike Frimpong, we signed a dozen who done nothing.

  23. JIMTIM, I’d wait until the announcement before accepting that it’s a pure Loan , I’m not sure we can send money to Russia now so in Haka’s case it wasn’t an option to buy it was an obligation to buy at a later date.



    Celtic40me You are correct about Shaw & Urhoghide but Connell has been knocking about for a bit longer.

  24. Celtic40me



    I think the difference is that Ange is directing the strategy (no DoF pish) and Nicholson is setting budgets/closing deals



    During The Horror, we had lost the plot on value purchases and had a nominal coach who picked the team with a scratch card. No manager in him



    Still amazing that we sold the farm like that. I will forget but never forgive



    Checked again today on the official site; Lennon isn’t on the legend list; Bonner is😎

  25. Bournemouth vs Forest is interesting



    One has a sustainable model and happy to flip/flop between leagues



    The other is going hell for leather for past glory and mortgaging on top League sustainability



    I lived in the East Mids for 15 years and the rise of Leicester was unexpected; Derby seen as Championship and Forest similar



    Great if Forest stay up, Derby regenerate but no-one likes Leicester (shitehole)

  26. Ok what’s been happening ya buncha scruffs?



    The reason Sevco have not spent one thin dime since beating PSV is because the CL rewards are all future money. There is no such thing as a UEFA advance and as far as I am aware, they still do not have a line of credit. So it’s jammy today and jam tomorrow down Govan way.



    Billy Gilmour undergoing a medical at Brighton. They couldn’t even bag one of their own on loan.

  27. The EPL has spent more than £1bn on transfer fees for players outside England



    A large amount will have gone on big fees for players from the other big 5 leagues but there’s still a lot of money going to teams from the smaller leagues.



    It would be silly, for a club our size and with our reliance on player trading for income to ignore that.



    Premiership teams dont sign players from leagues like ours over the age of 25. We need to sign players and flip them within a shorter time frame but the rewards are greater than they used to be.



    Ignore it and our competitors in our own league and others who we compete with abroad Gian a significant advantage over us over a period