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January 2020 a window of the margins

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The January 2020 transfer window closed with Celtic signing Patryk Klimala and Ismaila Soro, while Lewis Morgan and Scott Sinclair left the club.  In addition, Eboue Kouassi and Jack Hendry, as well as several youth players, left on loan.

With two left wingers out (or on their way out), Mikey Johnston’s injury on Wednesday set the club off looking for cover for that position.  If we continue to play three at the back, this will be less of a concern, but Neil Lennon’s other regular formation, with four at the back, requires two wingers.  It will be a couple of weeks before Mohamed Elyounoussi is back to full fitness, so James Forrest will carry much of the burden until then.

My big concern is in central defence.  We have the headcount in this area, but the two covering players, Jozo Simunovic and Nir Bitton have endured another season of injury, we are vulnerable.  Hatem Elhamed plays both right and centre back, so should be able to provide cover.  Like Moi, he is working towards full fitness. You can chart your own expectations on when he is Hatem is back and Jozo is next injured.

Ismaila Soro is likely to be used sparingly over the next few weeks as he adjusts to living in northern Europe, but I have hopes for him.  We need a player we can rely on when Callum McGregor or Scott Brown need a rest.  Patryk Klimala looks to have pace and a directness in front of goal.  He will give the manager options.

Despite the hero-status I attach to Scott Sinclair, those who have left contributed next to nothing this season, so should not be a miss between now and May.  The transfer window litmus test: Stronger or Weaker, will hopefully be passed.  What we know for certain is that we will not be significantly stronger or weaker.  This was a window of the margins.  Given the importance of this season, that fact is frustrating.

We now have our squad for what will either be our second nine-in-a-row season and possible fourth consecutive treble (!), or something considerably less glorious.  They are the strongest squad in the country, with the best manager in the country, do not bet against them.

The job starts with three consecutive games in Lanarkshire, the first time in our 132-year history this is the case (if I momentarily stop claiming Glasgow as part of the County).  History is ours for the making, let’s get it done.

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414 Comments

  1. FR. MCGREER on 1ST FEBRUARY 2020 12:54 PM

     

     

    Bless me, Father, but if you find the author and the content so repellent, why do visit such a site? P suggest you read St Augustine – again?? CQN is a dangerous occasion of sin for you, Father.

  2. Hi Paul67,

     

     

    “Despite the hero-status I attach to Scott Sinclair, those who have left contributed next to nothing this season, “

     

     

    Well there’s a fact…

     

     

    We would have beaten Rangers had his face fitted better – IMO

     

     

    Getting rid of a winger that contributed hugely important goals and assists during those legendary treble, treble years, in a window where we were desperately seeking to bring in a winger…

     

     

    MMMMMMMmmmmmmmmmmmm – Willo, eat your heart out!!

     

     

    I’m aff oot to watch the rugby…. win – win!?

     

     

    Hail Hail

  3. So many posts stating how they are going to react when and if Celtic lose the league.

     

     

    Not one post stating how they will react when and if Celtic win this league.

     

     

    Am I entitled to raise an eyebrow in April when after 9 months of calling out ” Celtic – you’re rubbish and are gonna lose this league”- you are going to turn round and say “Celtic, I love you! I always knew you’ld do it!”

  4. Morelos and mxKenna not fallen out yet? He’s the one defender that really bullies the wee rat.

  5. Back to football.

     

    And cheering on Aberdeen.

     

    My enemy’s enemy is my friend………..At least for today.

  6. And guess who has just scored for Prezton NE.

     

     

    Yes you guessed. Scotty Sinclair.

     

     

    HH.

  7. Whenever I watch the Huns, I just wonder how the hell we let them boss us in Hampden & at Celtic Park.

  8. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    Wish Scotty every best wish in the world.

     

    Fresh start could mean the world to him .

  9. SETTING FREE THE BEARS FOR RES. 12 & OSCAR KNOX on 1ST FEBRUARY 2020 3:51 PM

     

    So many posts stating how they are going to react when and if Celtic lose the league.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Not one post stating how they will react when and if Celtic win this league

     

     

    —–

     

    They will celebrate and then say… we won’t win 10..

  10. 67 European Cup Winners on

    Common sense tells me:

     

    We have the best squad in Scotland and the best team always wins the league – the league table never lies and all that

     

     

    Reality tells me:

     

    We are one foul (like Ryan Livingston) one honest mistake (like Clancy Hibs) or one galvanised Hun (like 29 Dec) from throwing the league away

     

     

    Fine Margins tell me:

     

    There is nothing between the contenders yet one contender is on the bread line the other is sitting on a mountain of cash why/how have we ended up with Fine Margins

     

     

    How many times have we been in a position to win 9 in a Row – then the obvious opportunity to go and do 10

     

    We all know the answer to that

     

     

    So why do we allow our competitor to believe that they are contenders and for clarity they are contenders

     

     

    IMHO – Arrogance – perhaps Peter has taken a liking to succulent Lamb

     

     

    If Celtic do not win the league PL must go

     

     

    Just for clarity I believe PL has been brilliant for celtic – but not winning the league with a Cash pile greater than some small countries is tantamount to gross negligence

     

     

    Fingers crossed Peter that Neil digs you out of a hole

     

     

    67ECW

  11. “Our club is not being run correctly , a blind man can see this. We are in the middle of our 9 IAR season…”

     

     

    Just read the snippet above…and while scrolling,

     

    read a few compliments of the whole post.

     

     

    Is it a cryptic crossword clue?

     

     

    According to that contributor then

     

    unparalleled success equals failure.

     

     

    Can you imagine having him as a boss?

     

    Bad enough he’s in charge of a keyboard never mind a football board.

     

     

    T

  12. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    ” So why do we allow our competitor to believe that they are contenders and for clarity they are contenders ? ”

     

     

    We didn`t allow them. They took the initiative away from us. On the day . And the second time.

     

    It`s sport. It happens.

     

     

    Everything to do with Lennie , his back up and the players.

     

    Nothing to do with P.L.

  13. Have the bookies given odds on a Hun penalty award?

     

    My prediction is for an award in the 85th minute for a Morelos dive.

  14. MACJAY1 – i can’t argue with you. I remember laughing after the league cup. The thinking was we had got out of jail like they used to do in the Tommy Burns era. Rope a dope.

     

    I said to some family friends with a blue allegiance, we would beat them easily at CP. We would not play that badly or passively again. We would set up differently to win the midfield and OE would be on from the start.

     

    The fact that we did play almost as badly lies at the feet of Lenny and his players. Nothing to do with PL.

     

    Many on here have repeatedly said none of their players would get into our first XI.

     

    You pick a team on merit. On those two showing, 8-9 of them would have been in the combined team of the day.

     

    After a few weeks off, our players look refreshed, theirs don’t. We are accustomed to dealing with several injuries, they are not.

     

    If our players play as they can for the next three months, we will win the league. If they play like they did in December then it is a lot less predictable. Much depends on how Lenny sets them out.

  15. i'vehadtochangemymind on

    Yeah, it’s definitely frustrating p67. Why do I feel like we’ve signed ship loads of players and have fupp all options. We can do it but need a bit of luck not to lose every single chuffing player we have to injury. The Huns are better, we know that now but they’re not good and very reliant on a narrow first 11.

  16. Corkcelt, your seeing a different Huns team to the one that played us. Before the break they were flying, all that has changed, their stats are much, i mean drastically worse. Amazing difference the break has made.

  17. 10 to go . Logging off time for me, If these pricks score a late winner, I don;t want to see them celebrate,

  18. Paul says “Ismaila Soro is likely to be used sparingly over the next few weeks as he adjusts to living in northern Europe”.

     

    Wonder how the Israeli teams manage to play in any of the Eurpean tourneys with such a change to be overcome.