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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. thankyou

     

     

    heil heil Adi… or should that be aldi ?

     

     

    smiley germans are no daft thing wit harm could a braw wee Forfar loon do them thing

     

     

    Braw

  2. NEUSTADT-BRAW

     

     

    👍

     

     

    Aldi & Lidl better not be gettin punted 😉

     

     

    Bro & law loves their stuff

     

     

    Never mind…GB will tell EU how its goun to be now as they can control everything….eh …..apart from…everything.

     

     

    😄

     

     

    HH

  3. aye it should be a laugh ….cos they are really geared up for the twats twits and tossers …me I am going back to ma roots ….so an Irish passport for me …I will be well dead before the SNP remember what they are there for …

     

     

    smiley we have the Celtic …fullstop…..thing

     

     

    Braw

  4. Plastic pitch, eh.

     

     

    Hamilton home record:

     

    Played 12, Won 3, Drawn 2, Lost 7.

     

     

    Doesn’t seem to bother too many teams. Why should it bother us?

  5. David17

     

     

    Thanks for that! He didn’t recognize them last week and this week individual errors. Poor kid. Surely Hibs can’t do one midweek?

     

     

    —————————————–

     

     

    Celtic Mac

     

     

    Always enjoyed the 5’s pitches but getting the full or half big pitch was always fun. Enjoy the game, been 25 yrs since I was there. 

  6. HH ist verboten heir …und 88….

     

     

    smiley hail hail the Vegetarian thing

     

     

    brew off the day is Bitburger Pils …awfy easy to drink thing

     

     

     

    Braw

  7. When our nearest rivals drop points we are happy. Not enough beers to be estatic, but happy.

     

     

    When we win ( hopefully) tomorrow I will be happier.

     

     

    When we beat Copenhagen i will be really happy.

     

    If we make it to Gdansk I will be delighted.

     

     

    If we win in Gdansk and win the 9 I will be estatic.

     

     

    If we win the 10, I will be euphoric.

     

     

    HH.

  8. A wee slip up from thems today means nothing unless we do the business tomorrow afternoon. Let’s hope the players and manager feel in the mood to do some damage to build up some pressure.

     

     

    HH

  9. Tomorrow is huge.

     

     

    Don’t give the Huns an inch !

     

     

    7 points clear and 14 games to go after tomorrow if we win !

  10. Results wise January has been terrific. February looks as busy as December, and just as important. Hopefully our two new signings get some good game time over the eight matches scheduled, and Ely and El Hamed become available, it could make all the difference to how our season pans out. Be great to have three strikers available for the rest of the season. Many, rightly drew attention to the number of away games we face, but if we gain ground, or make progress while we are playing them, our collective confidence will only grow. While bottles crash.

  11. The manager and players, I hope, are very clear that they need to ignore other results and focus on every game as it comes along.

     

     

    We supporters can do the speculating.

     

     

    I thought of their three games at home they would struggle most to Hibs. I still think they might.

     

     

    Of our three away games I am most concerned about tomorrow. Memories of getting absolutely cheated there when Jamesy F got sent off still linger.

     

     

    Hopefully we’ll turn up and blow them away but a last minute 1-0 win will do the job too.

  12. Manure game ends as it begun. 0-0

     

    Liverpool lead by 22 points, when will bookies pay out?

     

    Moyes leads West Ham into the relegation zone.

  13. Depends on how Hamilton line out.

     

     

    Playing against a team with 11 men behind the ball (which is likely how they will line up) is a lot more difficult on a plastic pitch than it is on grass

     

     

    The other teams in the league don’t come up against that

  14. prestonpans bhoys on

    Huns put on their new signing, Hagi didn’t show anything apart from a wild shot off target. The Swiss, I only ever wanted to play for Rangers*, lad had a one to one against goalie and was saved, offside too.

     

     

    Nothing to fear here, here we go 10 in a row👍⚽😉

  15. Funny old thing football.

     

    Totally outmuscled on 29th, initiative handed to the huns, modest transfer activity, yet here we are 4 points clear!🤷🏼‍♂️

     

    I’d have bitten your hand off for that.

     

     

    Broken sevco crest on early editions of the Sunday Mail, as the 1 point in 6 club lurches towards crisis?

     

     

    HH jg

  16. Prestonpans…..

     

     

    smiley is it no braw being a Tim thing

     

     

    hope your no alone thing !

     

     

    Braw

  17. The Blogger GM 7.15ish

     

     

    Peter & Neil are happy for one reason

     

     

    They are Celtic fans ….

     

     

    Plenty on here aren’t happy and probably some will never be happy

     

     

    Am in the Neil Lennon camp

     

     

    Not the spend spend spend spend spend brigade …

     

     

    We have a terrific team & a winning football team and the Celtic fans that want better players …. blah blah blah ,. Benkovic … Wanyama … remember these guys actually left Celtic

  18. BHOYLO83 on 1ST FEBRUARY 2020 7:29 PM

     

    Depends on how Hamilton line out.

     

     

    Playing against a team with 11 men behind the ball (which is likely how they will line up) is a lot more difficult on a plastic pitch than it is on grass

     

     

    The other teams in the league don’t come up against that

     

     

    ————-

     

     

    Ye see, that’s a great point. To which I would ask…

     

     

    If it’s a good tactic

     

    Why don’t Hamilton do that against all the teams at home and improve their record?

     

    Why don’t teams playing against Hamilton do that?

     

    Why don’t we do that? (Of course we want three points, but surely we are better on the break than Hamilton are).

     

     

    Also, I’ve seen us struggle just as much against 11 man defence at home on grass.

     

     

    Plastic or not, we have the weapons to break them down. Long distance shots, tic-a-tac-a on the edge of the box, slide rule pass in behind, corners, free kicks…

     

     

    The ref may have more of an influence than the pitch I fear.

  19. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    THE BLOGGER FORMERLY KNOWN AS GM on 1ST FEBRUARY 2020 7:13 PM

     

    The happiest men in Glasgow town will be Peter Lawell and Neil Lennon.

     

    ================================================================================

     

     

    No happier than me and other Celtic supporters.

  20. Mr Dunblane …..I hope your doing a braw job …and no annoying the special wan!

     

     

    smiley may she always shine(and make the big important stuff) things thing

     

     

     

    Braw

  21. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    GFTB and Macjay1 – echo your views.

     

     

    The Blogger – I see your point. But, if Neil and Peter are happier than I am then I am happy for them.

     

     

    Some days are joyous – e.g. when we win a trophy, a big game, or just a wee game with a last minute goal.

     

     

    Some, like today, are enjoyable for other reasons. Chuckle chuckle