It’s all about Pot 3


Celtic have a strategic problem.  The great Neil Lennon European campaign of 2019 is slipping from our coefficient status, and we have done little of note since.  Neil’s team are the only Celtic side to win a European group, finishing above Lazio, Rennes and Cluj.  Four wins, a draw and defeat in a dead rubber in Romania required some breathtaking performances.

If we are to continue at the Continent’s top table, we need to get back to winning games in Europe.  This is remarkably difficult in the Champions League, although Neil and Gordon Strachan had a formula.  Thier teams defended, played to their strengths and gave us some of the most memorable Celtic games in the last 50 years.

Brendan Rodgers and Ange Postecoglou changed all that.  Pragmatism was sacrificed for purity as record heavy defeats arrived in droves.  It remains to be seen what learning has been achieved.

The threats and opportunities within this afternoon’s pots are not evenly distributed.  We could get Manchester City or Feyenoord from Pot 1, Inter or Porto from Pot 2, Milan or Red Star from Pot 3.  There are five current or previous European Champions in Pots 1 and 2, three in Pot 3 and we are the only one in Pot 4.  Liverpool, Juventus and Ajax didn’t make the cut.

If it’s Feyenoord and Porto, fair enough, let’s see what we can do, but for me, the draw is all about Pot 3.  That is where we are most likely to find a team with comparable resources and challenges, and therefore collect some points.

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  1. DENIABHOY on 31ST AUGUST 2023 6:24 PM


    Signing a top keeper before tomorrow night would be my number one priority. Won’t happen but it should have been at the top of the list in my opinion.





    Spot on. As the previous encounter showed us, makes the difference in games of small margins.



    Hart’s career at this elite level is over.



    Poor judgment by us.




  2. Excellent draw. No English, and no teams I’d expect zero points from. Third place very doable and a punchers chance at second.

  3. Anthony Joseph




    UPDATE: Celtic have rejected a £10m bid from Leeds United for midfielder Matt O’Riley.



    The Scottish champions have reiterated to Leeds that they consider him not for sale.















  4. happy with the draw – we can finish 2nd or 3rd IF we show some intention – we made over 25m this window and have sufficient funds to add 1st team quality to the squad. Will we EVER push the boat out and support the managers ambitions.

  5. Apparently first time we have played Feyenord since that traumatic night in 1970…….



    Revenge ya bassas




  6. Good draw from competitive perspective but plenty of Hooligans lie in wait.



    Delighted we avoided English teams these Battle of Britain headlines do my head in.



    Might be in a minority on this one but I think Window going well.


    Think at this stage we have 8 in and 3 that count out.


    The injuries are the problem not the window.

  7. RON BACARDI on 31ST AUGUST 2023 4:55 PM



    The boys guild team played on the ash pitch of OHR until St Columba’s was built and we moved to their red ash pitch.


    The school played their home games at New Kilbowie Park, home of Clydebank juniors at the time.



    *before you went tae St Pats and me actually I hasten to add they had a notorious pitch called the “Rockies” the right hand corner flag at the Castlehill Road end was level with the crossbar, I believe they were unbeaten for something like 25 years there and sir furious once commented that when he played for a very strong govan high side the only school the feared playing at was St Pats, his Renton born grampa possibly attended it.



    Anyway one Saturday a very young TT went in tae watch my brother playin for St Kessogs, they were a man short so I got thrown in on the right wing wearing a pair of sannies, I was still very small at the time, St K had a very good side and contained one EC medal winner(twice) plus another lad who went senior and actually injured a Celtic player who eventually lost his fist team place and so missed out on Lisbon, there were several others that played junior.



    So here I am playing on the fabled Rockies when I actually burst through, ran in on goal and toe poked it but the keeper managed tae save it at the near post, I can still hear the oul men watching through the railings calling him a big mug for no letting the wee bhoy score, that keeper also played in a Big Cup Final.



    The following year as I entered first year the Rockies had been replaced with a red ash pitch.

  8. I’d happily sell O’Riley for £15m. x10 on our investment. About right.



    Buy an upgrade for £10m. One who can actually strike a ball & run a bit.



    Give the beancounters £5m for their beloved balance sheet.



    That’s how you do it.




  9. We will have our work cut out in that group.


    Three attractive destinations to visit .




  10. Big Wavy


    I would have taken 10 million for O’Reilly and bought a decent keeper. Hope they come back in with a better offer.

  11. bigrailroadblues on

    Palma and Yang on Sunday : “Well I’m standing next to a mountain, I chop it down with the edge of my hand”.

  12. Tom McLaughlin on




    Was there any combination of 3 teams where we wouldn’t have our work cut out?

  13. TINYTIM on 31ST AUGUST 2023 7:02 PM


    Big Wavy



    Who would you buy for £10m?












    Oh yeah…….forgot you can’t critique the club’s transfer policy unless you possess a dossier of 25 well-scouted global footballers.



    Ah well, 20 versions of Kwon it’ll have to be sir :(




  14. MARKIEBHOY on 31ST AUGUST 2023 7:02 PM


    Big Wavy


    I would have taken 10 million for O’Reilly and bought a decent keeper. Hope they come back in with a better offer.





    Far too rich for our guardians fella. We only paid for a database that goes to the £4.5m tab.




  15. I’ve seen us beat Lazio in Rome. I eas there when Atletico beat us in Madrid.


    Whats Rotterdam like ?

  16. “STEBHOY on 31ST AUGUST 2023 6:42 PM


    Will we EVER push the boat out and support the managers ambitions”



    ….and will you EVER post and unqualified positive post?

  17. Glasstwothirdsfull 12.24



    Your usual negative perspective



    What in our history in Europe this past 40 years would you say was positive then ? I am assuming 02/03 was a failure as we lost to a lower ranked Basel in the qualifier so I am guessing any other campaigns have been failures ? Aside from Neil’s in 13/14 ?

  18. Given what we recieve domestically, these are massive payouts per game. Literally our TV revenue for a season for a win.



    Group-stage wins €2.8m



    Group-stage draws €930k




  19. “TINYTIM on 31ST AUGUST 2023 7:02 PM


    Big Wavy


    Who would you buy for £10m?”



    Presumably someone much better than the 15 million Matt O`Riley :-))

  20. I’d rather keep matty but……



    Hatate would have been. My preference to stay.




  21. Snake Plissken on




    I reckon that was the game where Di Canio was brought down by Gough in 1996 for an obvious foul.



    Whoever that ref was will be the culprit.



    It won’t be McCluskey because he DID give a penalty in the cup at Celtic park against thems.

  22. What is the Starz on

    We are a Pot 4 team for a reason.


    Nice cities to visit though.


    Can’t see us getting many points ..maybe a couple of home draws..but you never know

  23. HOT SMOKED on 31ST AUGUST 2023 7:21 PM


    “TINYTIM on 31ST AUGUST 2023 7:02 PM



    Big Wavy



    Who would you buy for £10m?”



    Presumably someone much better than the 15 million Matt O`Riley :-))





    You better believe it. 2 guys in PSV’s midfield were bought for 5m & 7m. Latter goes for 34m soon.



    Both better players than Matt, who I like and who will have been a good example of our trading model.




  24. bigrailroadblues on

    By jove, you fellows like to argue. I don’t mind, I’ll haud the jaikets for yer skwerr go.😄

  25. 3 horrible clubs with pretty nasty fans to play. None of the places appeal to me either but I will probably end up going to all 3.



    Weirdly all beatable but equally we could end up with no points.



    Loving that the malcontents on here have not been seen since we signed a few players.

  26. That awkward moment when two weeks after saying you’re leaving, by the boss, James McCarthy is still sitting in the LXT cafeteria scooping out his muller light….




  27. “My agent told me there was contact with Rangers, but when I knew of Celtic’s interest, I was only decided on one team and I wanted to come here.”