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Ivorian link at work again, this time in Athens

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With three deals done, the pace of transfer activity at Celtic appears to be approaching relentless.  The Ivorian link will have been at work again, as news that we are interested in Olympiakos full back, Omar Elabdellaoui, testifies.  Celtic coach, Kolo Toure’s brother Yaya, spent half a season at the Greek club before leaving last month.

Signing players is always a risk, so getting a first-hand insight into how a player performs from someone who has worked with him daily for the last six months is a huge advantage.  Bear in mind, Elabdellaoui is just one of the right backs Celtic are considering.  This one could run a while.

Reports from the US that we have agreed a deal to sign 22-year-old left back Andrew Gutman are amusing, mostly as he was being trailed as a signing elsewhere in the city.  Great to see that as well as using our Ivorian links, we have plenty of connections at Scotland’s smaller clubs.  If he arrives, hopefully Callum McGregor will not see more action in that position.

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  1. succulentlambstinks on

    MIKE IN TORONTO on 11TH JANUARY 2019 4:22 PM

     

     

    Thanks again. It would obviously have to be without the 67 embroidery. Your link points to the embroidered one.

     

     

    Hopefully il find it.

     

    Cheers for your replies.

  2. eddieinkirkmichael on

    I went to St Pats in Dumbarton, a couple of ex Celtic players taugh there at the time. Peter Goldie being the one I remember most.

  3. mike in toronto on

    SLS

     

     

    Actually, if you look at the Toff sites, there is a 1970 Johnny Doyle version that seems to be what you are looking for….

  4. Jaysus Bhoys ye are all very gullible. Do ye read this site at all or do ye have the memory of a goldfish,

     

    Succulent Lamb Stinks, pollutes the blog with the most questionable posts constantly refers to Sinclair as Stink Hair calls Lustig Horrific etc etc. Stuff that no true Celt would post. Gets called out & disappears then turns with a nonsense post about looking for a 69 shirt for a mates 50th and ye buy it. Suddenly the Hun/Troll whatever has regained credibility, until the next time.

  5. EDDIEINKIRKMICHAEL on 11TH JANUARY 2019 4:40 PM

     

     

    I went to St Pats in Dumbarton, a couple of ex Celtic players taugh there at the time. Peter Goldie being the one I remember most.

     

     

    *Peter arrived at St Pats as I was leaving, he had some fitba pedigree, Vale Emmett, Duntocher Hibs and us before going south.

     

     

    His brother Frank also taught at St Pats and another brother Dick RIP lived out here, he was friends with my brother. Peter was allegedly first pick at the time of the 7-1 game but was injured that day and John Donnelly filled in for him.

     

     

    He was supposed to play in the 1956 Cup Final, he would have been the youngest Celt to play in a final, and couldn’t sleep the night before so went out for a walk, Silverton to St Pats on Cardross Road, the next day Sir Bob changed the side and Billy Craig who only played 9 games for us had the dubious honour.

  6. FTW,

     

     

    That Stevie Murray article was a brilliant read.

     

    If others dont mind I will post in all becuase often the Scotsman links are not available to all.

     

     

    Brilliant pictures in it as well.

     

     

    Its long , so scroll on past if your not wanting a 10 minute history lesson.

     

     

     

    TT,

     

    who was the jealous PE teacher, no names, but do you feel the same ?

     

     

    ——————————————–

     

     

    Interview:

     

     

    Steve Murray, the cultured midfielder Murray’s painting of Gordon Wallace’s winning goal in Dundee’s 1-0 victory over Celtic in the League Cup final of 1973 AIDAN SMITH Published: 23:27 Friday 11 September 2015

     

     

    Updated: 00:00 Saturday 12 September 2015

     

     

    As a player with Celtic and Aberdeen, Steve Murray had his own way of doing things. Today, he’s still the same Believe me, it isn’t terribly often when trying to track down a footballer from the old days that I’m directed to the “artist’s website”. I always thought of Steve Murray as a cultured midfielder when he starred with Aberdeen and Celtic, a man for painterly passages of play and fine-brush finishes, but when the image of a woman, dress falling off and flashing her buttocks, pops up it is something of a surprise.

     

    Am I in the right place? Oh yes, because here’s a triptych inspired by the 1973 League Cup final with our man bidding for glory with Celtic, although that day the prize went to Murray’s first club, Dundee. The website reveals that he lives on Tayside and this is where I expect we’ll meet, perhaps with Murray in a spattered smock, mixing greys and browns to recreate the classic playing surface of 40 years ago, and with a beret atop that fine head of hair, which was always undisturbed by his endeavours on those mudheaps. Instead, he’s 5,000 miles away in San Clemente, California, so we must talk via Skype. Murray appears in a T-shirt, sweating from the 84 degree heat. He doesn’t look 70, an impression enhanced when he mops his fevered brow, revealing a wrist crammed with bracelets and bangles. Murray seems right at home in this surfer’s paradise, headquarters of both The Surfer’s Journal and Longboard Magazine, and you can imagine him roaming the beach, looking for the perfect wave, to paint if not to ride. But, as he reveals, a sad event has brought him here. “My wife died in January,” he explains. “Forty-five years Kathleen and I were together and she was my rock. We met at a student dance in Dundee. Some of the younger players who shared my digs wanted to go and as club captain I thought I’d better chaperone them. Well, that’s my story, anyway. “She had lymphoma for about 12 years which we were able to manage but then she started suffering from dementia and went downhill badly. I lost her, mentally, about two years ago so, in a sense, it was better that she went when she did. Our twins boys, Nicholas and Anthony, are schoolteachers who coach kids’ football in their spare time and recently I was helping Tony with Dundee’s under-14s. Our other son, Chris, runs an academy in San Clemente, so now I’ve come over here to see if he needs a hand. I don’t know what’ll happen next. I’m just living moment by moment.”

     

     

    With Celtic and Aberdeen engaged in a table-topping clash today, I thought Murray would make for an interesting subject, but didn’t realise just how interesting. Here’s an example: “Once with the Dons I came on a tour of the States. In Boston, while the rest of the guys were whooping it up, I was in the library, studying science through the Open University, and desperately trying to finish an essay on DNA.” A painter. A thinker. A man of deep religious conviction who went to church every day. A footballer with very much his own way of doing things, who worked with three of our game’s greatest managers, Jock Stein, Eddie Turnbull and Jim McLean, and has stories to tell about them, good and bad. His own story, though, begins in Dumbarton when he wasn’t even the most famous Steve Murray in the family home. “That was my dad’s name, too, and he played for the Sons. One of my most vivid childhood memories was of him letting me put on his shirt after a game at Boghead and it swamping me. He was a midfielder, too, and brilliant in the air.” The young Murray played all time, hoping he might come to be as good: “In the street, against a wall, play-time, after school until tea and every Friday night on the local cricket pitch until we got chased.” The house revolved around sport with Murray’s mother, Liz, a competitive swimmer and champion badminton player. “Mum taught me badminton which I’m sure helped my football – honestly.” When he wasn’t cheering on Mum with his sister, Betty, he’d watch Clyde. “Dad didn’t want me going to Celtic games because of the sectarianism. I remember him coming with me – possibly to make sure I wasn’t sneaking off to Parkhead – when Clyde were playing Third Lanark. Thirds were a superb side with all the players complementing one another. Celtic might have had better individuals but Thirds were a proper team and that stuck with me. Their manager was Bob Shankly who’d lodged with Dad when they were at Falkirk together, so I was introduced to him that day, a good few years before he’d sign me for Dundee.”

     

     

    Murray very nearly didn’t get that far, with his secondary school, St Patrick’s High, stunting his interest in football and drawing – the latter also inherited from his father, a draughtsman by trade. “The PE teacher was, I think, jealous of Dad who was a pretty big name in Dumbarton and this guy used to kick me. Because of that I decided I wouldn’t play for the school team. And the art teacher didn’t like Dad either for some reason and marked me so low for a still life compared to a pal who couldn’t paint for toffee that I gave it up.” Thankfully, Jack Gilroy was on the staff, too. “He was a science teacher, but I never saw him in a classroom. He’d played for Forfar and got so involved with the school team that I think they changed his job. He got me in this wee gym for three-a-side games shooting at upturned benches and I went there every day until I left school. He organised outings to Scotland games, which were fantastic. He was my mentor and he taught me how to pass.” St Patrick’s had a fine football tradition. Sir Alex Ferguson, once of Govan High, admitted in his memoirs that they were the one team his otherwise successful side feared. School-mates John O’Hare and Nicky Sharkey were talent-spotted for Sunderland but Murray wasn’t really contemplating a career in football. “I didn’t think scouts were interested in me and only found out later that they were, but Jack had put them off, possibly so he could retain me as his captain! I certainly wanted to stay on at school for as long as possible, then study pharmacy at university. But, although I passed Chemistry and Maths, I failed English because I hadn’t read any fiction.”

     

     

    The teenaged Murray’s bible –when it wasn’t the Bible – was Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking, further evidence of his highly individual nature. Gilroy played a part in getting him his chance at Dens Park. “Maybe that was Jack making it up to me.” So was he daunted, at just 17, about suddenly finding himself on the same park as the European Cup semi-finalists? “No, not really. I’m a very serious person which is often misinterpreted. People think I’m shy but I’m not and, back then, nothing ever threw me.” The 17-year-old Murray had to impress at a public trial, Blues vs Whites, and managed to lay on a goal for Alan Gilzean. “The local papers wrote me up quite well. My boots had split beforehand and Jack could only find me some hockey shoes so I was head to toe in white. The headlines were all about the ‘mystery trialist’ and the ‘white ghost’. That made me sound like a character from a comic.” Well, he was in the right town for that kind of approbation. Murray’s Dundee were a decent side who twice got to Hampden only to lose to the Old Firm. Jim McLean was a team-mate and friend, although they’d fall out dramatically later. From there in 1970 it was on to Pittodrie. “Dundee had to sell a player for £50,000 every two years to balance the books and I was the guy who could get that.” He knew Turnbull from coaching courses which Murray, somewhat precociously, had attended as a young player. The Aberdeen boss offered his hand to shake on the deal but Murray wanted it in writing and was prepared to walk away if this didn’t come – proof he wasn’t the soft touch his quiet manner might have suggested, as Bob Shankly had discovered when Murray insisted he was entitled to £29 a week like the rest of the team. Bobby Brown, the Scotland manager, was another who misread the player. “He told me I was in contention for a cap but that I’d have to ‘come out of my shell’. I was annoyed about that. ‘Do you want me to clown around like the rest of them?’ I said. ‘I’m a serious fellow, that’s the way I am’. As far as I could see, Scotland had quite enough practical jokers.” Brown’s successor, Tommy Docherty, reckoned he was “not flamboyant enough”, and after that, with his family expanding and his studies getting more demanding, he asked not to be chosen by his country again. A shame, he admits. “The night of my only cap I had tears in my eyes.” Murray was hugely impressed by Turnbull’s methods and the psychology involved. Ineligible for the Scottish Cup Aberdeen would win in 1970, he wondered why the boss kept playing him in league games leading up to Hampden, especially one at Parkhead against fellow finalists Celtic. “He said: ‘Because with you in the team we’ll win and that’ll give us a huge boost.’ And we did. Another example was how he handled Joe Harper and Jim Forrest when they both wanted to play centre-forward and refused to pass to each other. Eddie managed to move Jim out to the wing because he was fast, although he gave him the No 9 shirt. ‘See,’ he said, ‘Forrest thinks he’s centre-forward.’” You can’t imagine Turnbull being able to pull the wool over Murray’s eyes like that.

     

     

    Murray has always liked how good teams are blended because stars who’re thrown together don’t always fit. The Third Lanark he saw as a boy were such a side, and he was part of careful assembly at both Dundee and Aberdeen. Even though he was the Dons’ record signing at £50,000, the headlines beyond the north-east were of the nature of “Steve who?” Quizzed on why he’d bought Murray, Turnbull tapped the side of his head and said: ‘Because he knows it.’ “I probably shouldn’t say this,” Murray continues, “but that Aberdeen team were more of an intelligent bunch. Bobby Clark was a qualified teacher and Martin Buchan was interested in languages.” Murray had his painting and the Open University; he always knew there was more to life, that he could do something else. But his Dons weren’t quite the perfect blend, being pipped at the post for the ’70-’71 championship. Maybe, jokes Murray, they were too cerebral with not enough rascals in the side. Then Turnbull left for Hibernian; Murray was crestfallen. When the Pittodrie board were reluctant to agree to his novel idea that they pay him a bonus anytime crowds rose above the average gate of 7,500 he seriously considered what “something else” might be. “A Dons fan who worked in the science department at Dundee University said they would be keen to offer me a full-time post.” While pondering this he called a press conference – a fairly radical thing for a player to do – to explain why he’d be leaving Aberdeen come what may. “Then I got a phonecall from Jim Rodger, the journalist, who was a confidant of Jock Stein. At first I couldn’t understand him; he was speaking in code about the ‘Duke’ and the ‘Bishop’. “That was a great press conference,’ he said, ‘and don’t worry, the Duke is very interested.’ Then the penny dropped.” Murray was thrilled to be joining Celtic and working with another terrific manager. “Jock told me I’d been signed on the strength of my performance for Scotland against Belgium [1971 Euros qualifier, 1-0 to us]. He said that game was the best Jimmy Johnstone had played for two years and that I could help him give Celtic two more. That was a compliment, I suppose.”

     

     

    The Stein-Turnbull rivalry still fascinates, how did they compare to one who played for them both? “I thought Eddie was perfect and couldn’t be bettered but Jock was brilliant in his own way and he had an aura that Eddie didn’t have.” Murray got off to the best possible start in Hoops, netting the late clincher in an Old Firm game. “A friend who was a hairdresser back in Dumbarton told me: ‘I was listening on the radio and when you scored I snipped this boy’s head’.” With Kenny Dalglish he developed an appreciation of each other’s movement that was almost telepathic. “We were able to find each other anywhere on the park.” Murray won a clean sweep of domestic honours with Celtic, producing cool left-foot finishes for both the Scottish and League Cups. A toe injury ended his career two years later; he was devastated. “I couldn’t watch a game or read a match report for the year after that. There’s a big white wall round my house and painting it on Saturdays I always knew when it was three o’clock and would say to myself: ‘I should still be playing.’ But I got over it. Right from the start at Dundee I said a little prayer every night, hoping to get to the top in Scottish football. I did all right, I think.” Murray, who’d demonstrated a sharp eye for numbers during wage negotiations, went into banking and did all right at that too before Jim McLean asked him to become his assistant at Dundee United. It was a mistake. “Jim could be difficult to get along with. I didn’t get bullied as a player but loads do and he was bad for it. I think we thought I had man-management skills which would counteract him not really having any but I was always having to put out his fires.” Then the pair had a big bust-up which resulted in Murray’s sacking, a court case and the ex-No 2 winning a £55,000 action. “I was banned from Tannadice and probably still am. When I went there to watch Chris play in a schools’ cup final I got asked to leave. I don’t think Jim would want to make up. That’s sad because he was a friend of mine and he’s not keeping too well right now.”

     

     

    Murray must be going. He’s sheltered from the heat long enough and now he must get on with some coaching. One-touch stuff, learned from a visionary teacher, with which he built his fine career, which he’s only too happy to pass on as a visiting emeritus professor of artful passing. “It wouldn’t be a career at all without Kathleen, who came to all my games and was always a marvellous support. When she was dying she said to me: ‘Go and coach the wee boys, it’s what you want to do.’ Near the end she thought she was holding me back. So right now I’m doing what she wanted me to do, and I’m doing it for her.”

  7. thomthethim for Oscar OK on

    I assume the new Belfast Celtic will be presented with the honours of the old Belfast Celtic.

     

     

    If no’, why no’?

  8. mike in toronto on

    Corkcelt

     

     

    SLS may or may not be a hun … hell, some on here may think I am … hell, who knows, maybe they are right, and I just never realized it.

     

     

    I try to give everyone the benefit of doubt on here … and, as I have said before, whether some on here is or isn’t a zombie is not important to me … if they make a good point, it doesn’t become bad just because they are a zombie … similarly, lots of silly points on here dont become good points just because the person who made it is a good tim.

     

     

    this is one of my favourite stories about Thomas Aquinas ….

     

     

    Thomas was a quiet, studious young man who became the butt of the jokes of his classmates who gave him the nickname “the Dumb Ox”. One day he was called to the window by his classmates who told him that a cart being pulled by a donkey was flying down the street. When he came to the window, they laughed at him because of his naïveté. Thomas said he would rather believe that a donkey could fly than that a Dominican could lie.

     

     

    I try to give CQN’ers the benefit of the doubt … I dont always succeed.. but I try.

  9. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    This could end up being a historic window to rival those of the high turnover summer ones of 1997 (not actually a window in those days of course, and some arrivals were after the season had started) and 2010.

     

    It’s almost four windows rolled into one if you consider the two “failed” ones of last year and also bringing forward summer signings to get them ready for the qualifiers.

     

    The Tierney injury/surgery throws in an extra complication. Difficult to get someone of quality, knowing KT will be first choice when fit. Maybe this is where a loan would work better?

     

    We need a high “hit rate” with these signings, but we also need to work on the issues that have cost us points. If we drop anything like the same number of points in the second half of the season we will likely come up short.

  10. Very Noble Mike, but if there are guys on here who I believe are anti Celtic and their motive is to disrupt the blog or cause division amongst the Celtic Supporters, then I will call them out every time.

     

    There was a blue nose on here for many years called Edward Ursus if I recall his name correctly. He never hid from who he was, he never tried to disrupt the blog . He was an interesting guy and was as welcome as the flowers in May.

     

    Maybe into the future you just might keep an eye on Mr. Succulent’s contributions, he may behave for a bit when he reads this exchange but he will revert to type in due course, You can make up your own mind then, I have taken note and my mind is most definitely made up.

  11. every now and again, CQN will , imho, return to form, and give a day of education, an insight, a memory of something wonderful, or just teach me something and I think wow.

     

     

    thats happened with the Stevie Murray art. I had no idea.

     

     

    Painting the pope, jock. jinky and the tay bridge, not end to end , but on a canvas.

     

     

    Everyday should be a school day, this was.

  12. Edward and Willie Millers tache were wonderful contributors on here.

     

     

    Often wonder how they are. And which them persons well, not their teams, but them as individuals.

     

     

    Sorely missed for alternate intelligent viewpoints.

     

     

    there i said it.

  13. right offski, duties call.

     

     

    its friday night, no football to ponder, will it be a fireworks and insults night or gentle music and goodwill,

     

     

    check back in the morning for the next episode of CQN THE TRANSFER WINDOW SESSIONS

  14. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Clearly Celtic are doing something right judging by the reaction of Sevco spin doctors.

     

     

    Or did the hard of thinking believe that the recent emergence of “Celtic are rubbish” links from Sevco News on Newsnow Celtic is a coincidence?

     

     

    Or Stinks’ appearance on CQN?

     

     

    In other news today IS the day for King and the cash appearing.

     

     

    And it is after 5pm.

     

     

    Tumbleweed.

     

     

    Hail hail

  15. mike in toronto on

    Corkcelt,

     

     

    I’m a laywer, remember? Nobility isn’t a word that I hear too often! :)

     

     

    I have, in the past, objected to things that people have posted, so I am not suggesting that you dont have the right to feel how you feel, or express those feelings….

     

     

    I have spent my life, trying to fight the good fight … and, growing up, Celtic was always part of that good fight …so, I do get upset when I see the club not fighting the good fight …

     

     

    doing what I do for a living, I dont always have the choice of being on the side of the angels, but I have sort of made my peace with that (doing what I do has allowed me to raise Fiona, and give her a good life … so, if the price of that is a good chance of me spending eternity in the fiery place, then I’m okay with that) …

     

     

    so I have to fight enough in my day to day life , so when I am on CQN, I try to (i) do the right thing, but (ii) not fight with others (disagree, for sure, but not fight) ….

     

     

    so, I will say thank you for your comment about being noble, even if I”m not sure that nobility has too much to do with it … more like trying to hold on to the vestiges of sanify and humanity I have at the end of the day.

     

     

    :)

  16. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    MIT – I’ve always enjoyed that story ….

     

     

    but

     

     

    ….. show me a Sevco supporter who is also a Dominican !!!!

     

     

    Hail hail

  17. succulentlambstinks on

    CORKCELT on 11TH JANUARY 2019 4:57 PM

     

     

    Excuse me. I am no Hun I assure you.

     

     

    And my question is valid regards the 69 shirt.

     

     

    So if you can’t offer any help regarding my question then please butt out. Thankyou.

  18. thomthethim for Oscar OK on

    Looking forward to welcoming back a fit Nir Biton, with added muscle, due to a year in the gym behind him.

     

    Should be like a new signing!

  19. Stinks a Hun or a Troll is what I said.

     

    Your last post was unusually polite so if I have you in a good mood could you please explain your motivation for constantly referring to Sinclair as Stink Hair.

  20. succulentlambstinks on

    CORKCELT on 11TH JANUARY 2019 6:01 PM

     

     

    Well my apologies if I offended you. Red mist.

     

    I know Sinclair was tremendous the 1st season which makes it harder to accept his constant poor form this season. But yes I admit to being wrong in calling him names on here.

     

    In future I shall continue to express my opinions but using plyrs correct names.

     

    Now I hope you can refrain from calling me a hun or a troll in future or attacking valid requests for help. Thankyou.

  21. Well Mr.Lamb like every other Poster here, including myself, we all leave ourselves open to criticism or attack when we post. It’s the way a Blog works.

     

    I cannot imagine any genuine Celtic Supporter would constantly call a Celtic player by a derogatory name, I note your apology but I remain cynical as to your motivation.

     

    I will look forward to your future posts & reserve the right to comment or criticize if I believe it is warranted.

  22. succulentlambstinks on

    CORKCELT on 11TH JANUARY 2019 6:20 PM

     

     

    Agreed. I offer my hand to you.

     

     

    Now can you help me with my enquiry hunting down a retro 1969 top ?

  23. It’s a cultured,open Celtic blog and we must expect sleekit huns like this…………it’s remarkable that when one takes a wee break anither character pops up.

     

     

    Aye

     

     

    Too obvious.

  24. Chairbhoy

     

     

    Thanks for the detailed reply, looking this is not me looking to get wise after the event, nor saying it was easy to qualify for the UCL. What I am saying was if you compare it to the Times when we had to beat Rangers to the league to even enter the qualifiers, then could draw teams like Arsenal in the qualifiers…

     

    …the almost guaranteed entry to the UCL qualifiers and the relative ease of the “champions route” gave us a huge opportunity.

     

     

    Since the turn of the millenium, we were knocked out of the UEFA by Bordeaux and CL by Basel (leading to Seville) and we qualified for CL against Ajax- all 3 big teams. However in 03/04 we only had to get by Kaunas and MTK Hungaria to make group section. In 04/05 we got direct entry to CL group for winning the title and the following year, we lost to Artmedia. So that’s 3 years with big-ish team competition and 3 years without.

     

     

    In 06/07- direct entry to Group Stage again, 07/08- one qualifying match vs Spartak Moscow got us Group Stages, after pens. 08/09- direct entry again and 09/10 we got by Dinamo Moscow only to be beaten by Arsenal.

     

     

    10/11 saw Braga knock us out at the first tie (3rd qualifying stage) and Utrecht knocked us out of Europa qualification

     

     

    11/12- despite losing to Sion we fluked entry to Europa League

     

     

    From 2012/13 onwards we have not had to face any big boys at the qualification stage.

     

     

    So the picture is one of mixed advantage and disadvantage. We play more qualifying rounds but won’t face a big 5 league team, but Arsenal, Basel and Spartak account for only 3 years of the past 17. Most years we only had one qualifying hurdle to make qualifying (and failed with Artmedia and Braga). Now, with 3 or 4 hurdles to overcome, you get more chances to fail, so I cannot accept your point about it being easier.

     

     

    The point about having to overcome Rangers is moot, because it does not make the CL riches any more or less guaranteed- you still have to beat all the other peripheral clubs aiming to be Pot 4 cannon fodder. Despite Rangers pressure, we have won 13 of the 18 leagues since the Millenium and they managed 5 only, the last in 2011.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Now I stated this on here six seasons ago. I predicted something that should be easily achievable it went something like this over five years…

     

     

     

    UCL qualification 2 Seasons

     

     

    Europa qualification 2 Seasons

     

     

    Europa after New Year 2/3 Seasons

     

     

    Failure 1 Season

     

     

    And yet you call it failure over the recent period when we got 4 CL Group Stages in 7 years (2nd, 4th, 4th and 3rd), including a last 16, and 2 Europa League post Xmas campaigns and only one season of failure, 2015/16, where we got knocked out of CL by Malmo and finished 4th in our Europa Group.

     

     

    We seem to have met the target you outline but now you call it failure.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Ok, now my point at the time was we should budget over a cycle to be a tier 3 UCL Club, that the money we would generate from Europe and player sales would allow us to achieve that…

     

    If we invested in the team in that way the chances are we would have, in reality done much better…

     

    Weeminger (another sorely missed poster) and I would oft cross swords on this. I believed I was right the, with the benefit of hindsight I’m even more convinced.

     

     

    We have not reached the point of being a tier 3 CL team. The entry of 4 or 5 teams from each of the big leagues will militate against that target being reasonable. Yet teams like Olympiacos, Basel and Porto have made a better attempt at this than us. As I pointed out with the advantages of larger populations and larger TV deals, mostly. The difficulty of not having a guaranteed league can be overplayed- Basel have won 12 titles this millenium, Olympiacos- 15 and Porto- 10 (Benfica- have only won 3 titles but outperform us in Europe -begs the question how advantageous a title win, easy or otherwise, is). These clubs are finding their leagues as easy to win as Celtic do- that does not explain their better CL performances.

     

    Hindsight cannot have convinced you of the merit of your approach because it has never been tried and never been tested. All you can reasonably deduce is an awareness of the limitations of the alternative model that has been tried. I cannot foress a situation whereby your hypothesis can be put to the test until Celtic find themselves in a more advantaged position

     

     

     

     

     

     

    You refer to the above as speculating to accumulate, that would not be my take at all, this is investing in the best team we can reasonably afford and maximising potential…

     

    …what I do call speculating to accumulate is the dozens and dozens of players we brought in (avg: £2M a pop) that failed to make a contribution to the first team (or the development squad in most cases) using precious Club resources for nought.

     

     

    And yet, we reach a situation where Edouard is our only fit forward for too long. We have been in similar shortage situations with defenders> The advocates of a tighter squad with a higher wage never factor injury and suspension into their thinking, beyond the “just throw a reserve into the breach” line. We will never get past the days of needing to buy journeymen to supplement the stars. It has been so in all teams at all times- only the fees paid for the journeymen have changed.

     

     

     

     

     

    .

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As far as the Billionaire shareholders are concerned, I wasn’t suggesting that they put money into the Club, this was simply a foil Against those who perpetrate rich corporate, Arab or Oligarch ownership leads to success. It’s also worth pointing out the financial stability and opportunities they bring.

     

     

    I don’t get the point. The billionaires on our Board have supplied stability. What are they a “foil” for exactly?

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Instead of the PLC hording money to spend awaiting the invitation to a “better” league, we could spend that money on the football club, there by enhancing our chances of an invite and when it comes utilise this skill set and financial muscle to do a bit of financial engineering to get us competitive and reap the rewards when that time arrives, we would need to restructure our finances anyway.

     

     

    And what if the club has been told- keep your fanbase up, improve your stadia and surrounds and hold on to your current ranking , and you will be in our thinking dfor the breakaway league?

     

     

    What if it was the exact opposite of what you assume?

     

     

    I would think Desmond and Lawwlll have an ear closer to the ground than we have as to which way it is best to jump

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The failure of TV money and quality in Scottish Football is down to…

     

     

     

     

     

     

    …Scottish Football, Celtic are a key element in that, in their own right and as part of the old firm. “

  25. Absolutely scunnered at KT injury, a result of weekly assaults that 90% of the time go unpunished. He’s not the only victim of this thuggery, several of our players have been crocked this season alone by perpetrators who commit the offences because they know there’s a good chance they will escape penalty (at the time). Edouard and Broony have missed games because of this, the guilty parties are allowed to complete the game against us and are (occasionally) brought to book and serve bans against our competitors. Dolly Mendez?

     

     

    The statement last week was welcome but long overdue. ( does anyone think the sfa will grant Celtic their request?) Brendan has been brilliant but is far too diplomatic about calling out the assaults and plain wrong disciplinary decisions.

     

     

    McGregors kick, Naismith’s assaults, Boyatta’s red card and many more. Sevco have been pressuring the refs and the sfa since the opening game and seem to be getting their way. How many sevco games has Collum refereed since they brought the game into disrepute?. We have been far too passive and the sfa/ refs have cottoned on to this. The frequency and brazenness of these calls is increasing every game. We are miles ahead of every team in the country including sevco but we are sleepwalking into a situation whereby their challenge becomes relevant enough to threaten stealing our champions league place AGAIN. Sevco are gash and don’t even deserve to be in second place but if left unchecked the decisions will become even more outrageous. We know this because we’ve been here before.

     

     

     

    Rant over.

  26. JOBO BALDIE on 11TH JANUARY 2019 3:33 PM

     

     

    Good afternoon, friends.

     

     

    After the break, –

     

     

    Celtic play St Mirren, Hamilton and St Johnstone all at home followed by a trip to Perth then home to Hibs. Should be at least 13 points.

     

     

    Sevco travel to Kilmarnock and Livingston, then home to St Mirren, then away to Aberdeen. be doing very well to get more than 7 points

     

     

    Kilmarnock are home to Sevco, away to Aberdeen, home to Hearts, away to Dundee – maybe 6 points?

     

     

    Aberdeen are away to Hamilton, home to Kilmarnock, away to Hibs, home to Rangers – I’d say 7 – 9 points.

     

     

    So in this short period, the 2nd, 3rd and 4th teams all play one another.

     

     

    By then, 6th February, we will have a much clearer idea of whether there is still a title race. At the moment

     

     

    we are still 2/7 to win the league (on bet365). In 4 weeks time I expect we’ll be more like 1/20.

     

     

    —————————————————————

     

     

    Thanks for that encapsulation, jobo.

     

     

    No excuses for Celtic – never mind the MIBs, it’s wide open for us to outplay the dross and gain a formidable lead over the rat pack.

     

     

    Couldn’t have hand-picked a sweeter run of games.

  27. Setting Free the Bears…. at 5:47.

     

     

    Good attempt … but I was only counting the surname.

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