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Justifying bitterness

1111

I have two significant concerns about Walter Smith’s comments yesterday. He spoke about the events which followed Rangers liquidation in 2012:

“There was no necessity for Rangers to be put down into the Third Division.

“That will always stay in Scottish football. There will be a bitterness in the Rangers ranks. It will be a massive motivation for the club. It would certainly be for me.

“How can they forget what happened to them? Nobody could forget that.”

I’ve spoken to people at Celtic about security concerns ahead of the weekend. The game itself will almost certainly pass off without incident, but what happens on the streets of Glasgow and surrounding towns is anyone’s guess.

You will hear nothing even close to inflammatory from Celtic, senior fans groups, or anyone who cares about the club’s fans and wellbeing. Justifying bitterness due to (mis)perceived persecution ahead of this fixture is inciteful.  I’m astonished Smith said this.

On his subject matter, let me give you an alternative scenario:

Newco Rangers are parachuted straight into the Premier League, hundreds of creditors are abandoned, they have a full squad of players and are not a penny in debt. They would have been out signing players within minutes of registration (they even tried to sign a player while still in administration).

With Oldco having won the league accumulating debts they would never pay in 2009, 2010 and 2011, Newco, free of legacy financial commitments, would have an excellent chance of winning again in 2013 and beyond.

This plan was one strand of Craig Whyte’s lunacy and it would have killed Scottish football. Celtic, and others, would have been left to consider, do we pay these millions of debts, or liquidate and spend the money on players instead? I had this very conversation with a senior figure in the game in October 2011, when the realisation of what Whyte was planning became evident.  Utter mayhem would have ensued.

The damage done to the Rangers brand of clubs by allowing Newco access only to the bottom tier was huge. It’s consequences are yet to be appreciated by most fans.  Newco may never win a top flight league.

But the question was not whether to impose a trauma on ‘Rangers’ or allow everyone to carry on as we had before, this was not an option. It was whether to allow the existing rules and processes to stand, allow responsibility for the enormous mismanagement of Rangers to be carried primarily by Newco, and have other clubs deal with the fallout, with or without a ‘Rangers’ club in the league.

Whyte’s plan replicated what he’d done in other industries, but it would have devastated Celtic in particular. We were beaten for years on the field by a team who could not pay their bills or correctly register their players, then we would be beaten again as they walked away from debts without consequence, which is why I wrote this article in October 2011 on the Prepack route for Rangers Newco.

Pretty much all of what I wrote about in that article came to pass, it had to be stopped (and you’ll never know the key movers in doing so).  Smith should consider if the boot was on the other foot, if he would be happy to allow his club to be subverted in the manner he suggests would be good enough for others.  It was simply never an option.

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  1. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    HUNTLYBHOY 86

     

     

     

    My Dad could supply a list of games between c1945 and 1964 which would have you reaching for the razor blades. Don’t encourage such nonsense,ffs!

  2. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    ROBINBHOY

     

     

    Reading the papers back in the day was how we found out what was happening in the world.

     

     

    Much of it we knew to take wi a pinch of salt,but we didn’t quite think they would lie to us so blatantly. That was the preserve of politicians.

     

     

    Now,journos and politicians are so mistrusted they might as well not bother. Hell mend them.

  3. The man with no surname’s comments are indeed indicative of the “We are the peepil” mentality that still pervades out of Mordor today.

     

     

    We’ll be at Muse concert Sunday night in Glasgow at the Hydro, were considering travelling up mid afternoon for a pre concert dinner and aperitif until I realised what else might be happening in Glasgow city centre that afternoon, carnage potentially!

  4. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    COSY CORNER BHOY on 13TH APRIL 2016 8:19 AM

     

     

    Great story , pal.

     

    I used to love games against Clyde.

     

    Incidentally , you must have been a better than decent fitba`player.

  5. Delaneys Dunky on

    P67

     

     

    My mother would never use the word hun. Her description would always be, “bitter Rangers fan, best avoided son.”

  6. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Paul I dont think we should dignify Walter Smith or his comments by answering his comments.It is clear to all including the Rangers fans that Glasgow Rangers were liquidated and the new team the Rangers gained entry to the lower league when it could be argued that they should not have.The constant nonsense we here from the tribute act and there fans about the same club is at best delusion and at worst a down right lie. H.H.

  7. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    MACJAY

     

     

    I believe his younger brother was even better. So he tells me!

  8. From the previous thread (apologies to those who have already read it and now need to scroll furiously haha)

     

     

     

    I haven’t posted for quite a while but I wanted to share with you all the results of a little task I set myself a few days ago. I’m approaching my 30th birthday (it’s not until August) but a lot of my friends have already turned 30 this year and one of them (who is music daft like myself) talked about the top 30 gigs that he’d attended in his lifetime and he shared it on facebook, his blog etc.

     

    It got me to consider what the top 30 Celtic games would be within the span of my lifetime. Now, I must state that I’ve only included games that featured when I first started watching Celtic and football in general. My first interest came through watching the 1994 World Cup in the USA and I didn’t really start following Celtic until the 94/95 season. As a result I haven’t included the 1988 League and Cup double or the 1989 Scottish Cup. I also haven’t included any defeats as although the 2003 Uefa Cup Final was a hugely important occasion that filled us with great pride it also provided huge pain that I have never really gotten over if truth be told.

     

    It was such a brilliant exercise to undertake and it made me realise yet again how lucky I am to be able to call myself a Celtic supporter. I have tried to place the games in order of importance (or in order of enjoyment) but don’t read too much into it; hopefully you enjoy the list nonetheless!

     

     

    30. CELTIC 3 – 3 Inter Milan 2015 (UEFA Europa League)

     

    The only Ronny Deila match that features in my top 30. I feel this is perhaps a somewhat generous inclusion but even though Ronny receives a lot of stick there was a period of games from January till March/April where we really did start to look like a proper team. This game epitomised the hope that was starting to spread throughout the support however whether or not we’ve progressed or regressed since then is a debate for another time. I understand it was a match we didn’t win but the atmosphere, the fact that it was Inter and the way the match ended made it standout for me. It was an emotional rollercoaster and we showed real character to fight back after some uncharacteristic errors from Craig Gordon. Apart from the Guidetti goal it was very pleasing to see the football leading to our first goal (if you watch it again it’s a fantastic move!)

     

     

    29. CELTIC 1 – 0 Barcelona 2004 (UEFA Cup)

     

    Another fantastic European night under the lights at Celtic Park. Alan Thompson’s goal gave us the advantage going over to the Nou Camp (I could quite have easily placed that match as well) and despite it being in the Uefa Cup it was still a victory over Barcelona, which was no mean feat (especially considering that some of the squad went onto win the Champions League just two years later).

     

     

    28. CELTIC 3 – 0 Shakhtar Karagandy 2013 (UEFA Champions League Final Qualifying Round)

     

    It wasn’t against a European football giant by any means but I can’t forget how much pressure the management and players were under and how much the media in this country were loving our predicament after the first leg. The performance and result was the perfect GIRFUY up to the media and all of the critics. The atmosphere and passion shown from the stands as well was crucial in helping us over the line.

     

     

    27. CELTIC 1 – 1 Spartak Moscow 2007 (UEFA Champions League Final Qualifying Round)

     

    Quite simply a fantastic match between two evenly matched teams who were desperate to qualify for the UCL. It was torture for the emotions but given that it’s the only European match I’ve seen us win on penalties (the Holy Goalie had one of his finest hours) it had to be included.

     

     

    26. CELTIC 5 -1 Rangers 1998 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    An outstanding team performance led mainly by the incomparable Lubo Moravcik and undoubtedly the highlight of the Venglos season. A young Henrik Larsson also performed exceptionally well that day.

     

     

    25. CELTIC 2 – 0 Lyon 2003 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    The actual three points itself didn’t result in qualification or any other special achievement but the overall performance and goals acted as a statement that Martin O’Neill’s side could play football of the highest calibre against the best Europe had to offer.

     

     

    24. CELTIC 3 – 0 Kilmarnock 2001 (Scottish League Cup Final)

     

    The first trophy of the Martin O’Neill era and one that allowed us to dream of The Treble (enough said).

     

     

    23. CELTIC 3 – 0 Dunfermline Athletic 2006 (Scottish League Cup Final)

     

    The first trophy of the Gordon Strachan era and the reason I rank it higher than the others already mentioned is because of the overall context in which the game was played. It was hugely important that the team put on a winning performance as a tribute to our Greatest Ever Player and thankfully they did.

     

     

    22. CELTIC 3 – 0 Hibernian 2013 (Scottish Cup Final)

     

    A victory that allowed us to achieve The Double in our 125th Anniversary Season. Neil Lennon and his team gave us a tremendous season and the final game in an all-green final just topped it off perfectly.

     

     

    21. Kilmarnock 1 – 2 CELTIC 2007 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    Although it was quite clear that we were going to be crowned Champions you don’t always know when and where it’s going to happen. The manner in which it was clinched (the Nakamura free-kick) was typical of a Celtic side who, under Gordon Strachan, kept playing till the final whistle and got their rewards for doing so. Of course Nakamura gave us so many wonderful moments (especially from a dead ball) but this was probably his finest moment for us…..in domestic football that is ;0)

     

     

    20. CELTIC 3 – 0 Benfica 2006 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    Like the Lyon game, it didn’t necessarily send shockwaves throughout Europe like some of our more famous wins against “bigger” clubs but the manner of the performance and the margin of victory means that it can definitely be looked upon as one of our most memorable Champions League victories. On a side note, a minor miracle of the evening was the fact that Kenny Miller actually looked like a proper footballer! He’s gone on to bigger and better things of course, scoring in cup finals against Peterhead don’t you know?!

     

     

    19. Spartak Moscow 2 – 3 CELTIC 2012 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    The game where we finally shook the monkey off our back so to speak. A quite thrilling football game ended with a last minute Samaras winner and it should also be noted that it was a fully deserved three points given the bravery shown in terms of getting on the ball and making things happen. A great night for the away support and one which ultimately proved vital in terms of qualifying for the last 16.

     

     

    18. CELTIC 3 – 0 Rangers 2012 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    The three points were not that actually that significant due to the fact that the League title was never in any doubt (especially after Valentines Day ;0). However in terms of gloating, goading, singing, banter etc it was probably the best game in living memory! The Four Horseman will forever be remembered and on the park, in what was the last ever Old Firm Derby, Rangers (in Liquidation) were humiliated!

     

     

    17. Rangers 0 – 3 CELTIC 2001 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    A masterful performance from O’Neill’s treble winning team which also included expertly taken goals by Moravcik and Larsson (the 50th goal of the season for our magnificent Swede). It was our most comfortable win (and the biggest gulf in class) I’ve seen at Ibrox during my lifetime.

     

     

    16. CELTIC 2 – 0 Rangers 2009 (Scottish League Cup Final)

     

    Although the capture of a League Cup is very rarely the most important part of any Celtic campaign this one was particularly sweet given the opposition. It was the only time I saw us win an Old Firm Cup final and therefore it sticks in my memory as a victory to cherish.

     

     

    15. CELTIC 3 – 0 Dundee Utd 1997 (Scottish League Cup Final)

     

    This match was not so much about the silverware (although it was hugely welcome) but rather the momentum that it built for one of the most crucial seasons in our history. The feel good factor that the victory generated throughout the Club propelled us to bigger and better things, just when we needed it the most!

     

     

    14. CELTIC 2 – 1 AC Milan 2007 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    Another special European night against the holders of the Cup in which we punched (yet again under Gordon Strachan) well above our weight. The actual match itself was quite a cagey affair but the climactic manner in which the three points were secured in the heavy Glasgow rain allows this game to be deemed a “classic”. Also the night when Dida became a Diddy!

     

     

    13. CELTIC 4 – 3 Juventus 2001 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    What…a…game! Moravcik, Larsson, Sutton, Agathe, Valgaeren, Lambert, Lennon…all outstanding in what was arguably one of the most entertaining games ever seen at Celtic Park. The opposition contained players such as Alessandro Del Piero, Pavel Nedved and David Trezeguet in what was a feast of attacking football, enough to impress any neutral. Happily for us it was the Hoops who emerged victorious, Chris Sutton’s volley being the highlight of an unforgettable night in Paradise! Had the result helped us qualify for the last 16 that year it would definitely have featured higher up on my list.

     

     

    12. Blackburn Rovers 0 – 2 CELTIC 2002 (UEFA Cup)

     

    No.13 was undoubtedly a more impressive victory against far better opposition however the importance of the Blackburn victory and the GIRFUY affect it generated cannot be underestimated. After the famous “men against bhoys” comment by Mr.EBT after the first leg it was widely believed within the media on both sides of the border that Rovers would go on to put us in our place. The performance and result that followed allowed us to dream of what could be achieved with the side O’Neill had built; a truly magical time to be a Celtic supporter (and of course better was to come).

     

     

    11. CELTIC 2 – 1 Rangers 2008 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    The league championship looked all but done after a disappointing home result to Motherwell in April however what transpired next was one of the greatest comebacks in our history. The game where everything seemed to turn in our favour was the midweek Old Firm game that was won in the most dramatic of circumstances when Vennegoor of Hesselink rose to head home in the dying seconds. This was after Nakamura produced one of the greatest goals ever seen in an OId Firm game to put us 1-0 up earlier on in the game. Quite simply had we drawn the game then the league was gone and the euphoria that accompanied the winning goal will never be forgotten. The defining moment of the 3-in-a-row era in my opinion.

     

     

    10. Dundee Utd 0 – 1 CELTIC 2008 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    Once again it wasn’t a classic match by any means but after the passing of one of the greatest ever Celts in Tommy Burns it was pivotal that the Championship was won and dedicated to him and his family. ‘Helicopter Thursday’ was as emotional as it was joyous and the Celtic support once again demonstrated its class in paying tributes to Tommy. On the pitch it was the climax of what was an incredible comeback by Strachan’s men, who looked down and out only a month earlier. Of course it is also worth mentioning that the result confirmed 3-in-a-row, a feat that had only been achieved twice before in our Club’s illustrious history.

     

     

    9. CELTIC 3 – 0 Hibernian 2001 (Scottish Cup Final)

     

    In any normal circumstances a Scottish Cup triumph against Hibs is perhaps not our biggest achievement however in the context of the 2000/01 season it was massive. Quite simply, beat Hibs and we would secure our first treble since the Stein era. The confidence within the support that The Treble would be won gives you an indication as to how much pride and belief Martin O’Neill had instilled in such a short space of time. One of the most one-sided cup finals you will ever see resulted in a 3-0 victory for O’Neill’s men, capping off a perfect season in the Hampden sunshine.

     

     

    8. CELTIC 1 – 0 Airdrieonians 1995 (Scottish Cup Final)

     

    Again, context is everything. Certainly not our greatest ever triumph by any means but arguably one of our most important. It had been a long 6 years since Celtic had last lifted silverware and the final in 95 was the chance to put that right. It was also imperative that the outstanding work done by Tommy Burns as our manager (against a financially doped rival) was rewarded with a trophy. It is a travesty that this was the only silverware won by Burns and his hugely entertaining side however it is one of the most cherished victories in a period of our history that was unbelievably tough. (It was also the first trophy I saw my beloved Celtic win ;0)

     

     

    7. CELTIC 2 -0 Rangers 1998 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    The New Year’s derby of 1998 was a victory that seemed to galvanise both the support and the team in our quest to Stop The Ten. Goals from Burley and Lambert (a remarkable strike in a game of such importance) gave the Hoops a pivotal three points and it seemed to put significant doubt into the minds of our fiercest rivals at just the right time. It was arguably our most important derby win of the 90s and the one that ultimately proved decisive in stopping the ten.

     

     

    6. Boavista 0 – 1 CELTIC 2003 (UEFA Cup)

     

    Henrik Larsson’s winner in this match is quite possibly the goal that has been most celebrated in my Celtic supporting life thus far. The cheer that reverberated around my house was heard three doors down and it was the victory that finally put us back on the European map as we had qualified for our first final in over 30 years. Boavista were not the most well known side in Portugal but they were an extremely tough and streetwise opponent. It seemed that we’d perhaps blown our chance by not securing a victory in the home leg but there was still an air of confidence within the Celtic support given how the team had performed in previous rounds. The King of Kings proved to be the difference (once again) and despite not managing to win the final with Celtic he finally achieved the European title his career deserved with Barcelona in Paris three years later.

     

     

    5. Liverpool 0 – 2 CELTIC 2003 (UEFA Cup)

     

    Despite the Boavista game undoubtedly being more important due to being the Semi-Final of the competition it wasn’t an enjoyable tie whatsoever. In fact, it was one of the most excruciating games you could ever watch due to the nerves involved, the prize at stake and the knowledge that the Club might not get into such a position again during your lifetime. The Liverpool tie however was completely different as a supporter. There was so much to enjoy in seeing these two clubs go toe-to-toe over two legs of football. The first leg (similar to Blackburn before it) had seemed to give the English side the advantage however a magical Celtic performance masterminded by Martin O’Neill saw us progress by two clear goals. The first was an incredibly clever free kick by Alan Thompson who anticipated that the Liverpool wall would jump. The second was simply a world class thunderbolt struck by John Hartson, undoubtedly his best and most important in a Celtic shirt. The performance and result reverberated around not only the UK but across Europe and it was the moment when the support realised that this team might just be capable of winning a European trophy for the second time in our history. At that particular moment in time we were probably the best side in Britain and the fact that we ended the 02/03 season without a trophy is quite mind boggling.

     

     

    4. CELTIC 1 – 0 Manchester United 2006 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    The result and what it meant in pure footballing terms (our first qualification from the UCL group stages) was hugely significant but just as eye-catching was the manner of our victory and who it came against. I must have watched the Nakamura free-kick over 1,000 times in the last ten years and it brings a smile to my face every time. It is my one of my favourite ever Celtic goals (and the fact that it came against Man Utd and Ferguson is even better!) Of course we had heroes at both ends of the park that night and the Boruc save produced just as big a roar as the goal itself! Another quirky aspect of the night was the fact that Gordon Strachan didn’t even realise we had qualified until informed by the interviewer! It was a timely reminder that we could still match the best that England had to offer not only over one game but over two (a 3-2 loss at Old Trafford earlier in the group means that had it been a two-legged affair the Celts would have progressed on the away goals rule)! Huge credit to Strachan who had banished the demons of Artmedia Bratislava and restored our credibility in Europe while at the same time cutting the wage bill and overall debt level. He was a clever coach who ensured on many occasions that his team exceeded its assumed capabilities, particularly at Celtic Park. Along with the 3-in-a-row season this was his finest hour as Celtic manager.

     

     

    3. CELTIC 2 – 1 Barcelona 2012 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    The biggest and best night during Neil Lennon’s reign as manager on what was also our 125th Anniversary (you couldn’t make it up eh?) Taking on Barcelona, who were widely regarded as the greatest club side on the planet, would be a daunting task for most sides but the Celtic team and supporters relished the challenge despite the massive disparity in resources and player quality. The organisation, work rate and passion demonstrated by Lennon’s team was a joy to behold and despite not being as free-flowing as Jock Stein’s Lisbon Lions there was still an element of beauty in the way this victory was achieved; through sheer bloody-mindedness. Wanyama and Watt etched their names in Celtic folklore, as did “La Gran Muralla” who produced a string of remarkable saves (before feeling sorry for the best player in the world and finally letting him get on the scoresheet in the dying minutes). It was a night that made you so grateful for Celtic and once again the reputation of our Club and in particular the support was revered all over the world.

     

     

    2. CELTIC 6 – 2 Rangers 2000 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    It was Martin O’Neill’s first Old Firm Derby. He was up against a Rangers squad who had won the previous two league titles at a canter. How would he perform under the pressure of his first real test as Celtic manager? How would his team play? Could he lay down a marker for the rest of the season despite it only being the end of August? What followed was one of the greatest demolitions of a Rangers side ever witnessed (and probably the best ever start to an Old Firm Derby for the Hoops). Celtic steamrolled their rivals with a power and confidence that defined the Martin O’Neill era. The significance of the result and the manner in which it was achieved could not be underestimated. O’Neill made both players and supporters feel 10 foot taller. He possessed an aura that drove the team to incredible things, winning The Treble for only the third time in our history (while becoming only the second manager to achieve the feat). He was quite simply the most important appointment the Club had made since Jock Stein and arguably the man who more than any other drove Rangers to suicide in their bid to keep pace.

     

     

    1. CELTIC 2 – 0 St.Johnstone 1998 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    I firmly believe that for as long as I live a Celtic side will never have to play under the same amount of pressure that was placed on the shoulders of the players who took to the pitch to face St.Johnstone on Saturday 9th May 1998. Drawing or losing was simply unthinkable and I shudder to imagine how long it would have taken our Club to recover had we blown our chance to Stop The Ten. Despite being so young at the time (11 years old) I understood the significance of the match and given the fact that I had never witnessed a Celtic title win (too young to remember the Centenary Season) I was desperate to do so. I’ve been told by others who were present just how tense the stadium was however thankfully Henrik curled in a wonderful effort in the opening stages of the game to (partially) settle the nerves. Harald Brattbakk scored the second goal on 72 minutes and in that moment the supporters knew the team were not going to throw it away. I will always admire Wim Jansen, Murdo McLeod and the playing squad for what they achieved that season. It was so much more than a Championship win, it was a release of almost 10 years of unbridled pain and frustration. It genuinely felt like Good triumphing over Evil and it acted as a catalyst for the success we were to go on and enjoy come the turn of the century, no longer in the shadow of the Govan mob.

     

     

     

    Honorable Mentions (ones that narrowly missed the cut)

     

     

    Rangers 0 – 2 CELTIC 2011 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    Two goals from Samaras gave Neil Lennon one of his best results as Celtic manager however the league slipped away following a poor defeat up at Inverness.

     

     

    Barcelona 0 – 0 CELTIC 2004 (UEFA Cup)

     

    The performance of young David Marshall resulted in Celtic knocking out the Catalan giants 1-0 on aggregate, a stunning achievement.

     

     

    CELTIC 3 – 0 Motherwell 2011 (Scottish Cup Final)

     

    Neil Lennon’s first trophy as manager and it provided the team with the confidence to go on to bigger and better things during the next few years of Lennon’s tenure. As Lennon had promised, the ‘thunder’ was well and truly back!

     

     

    CELTIC 4 – 3 Dundee Utd 2013 (Scottish Cup Semi-Final)

     

    A quite brilliant semi-final seven goal tussle that was eventually settled in extra time. Granted there was some shocking defending on our part but there were also some fantastic finishes (Kris Commons) and plenty of excitement.

     

     

    Hearts 2 – 3 CELTIC 2006 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    A great game of football that epitomised everything good about Gordon Strachan’s Celtic, fighting back from 2-1 down to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat thanks to a double from Captain Stephen McManus.

     

     

    CELTIC 2 – 1 Shakhtar Donetsk 2007 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    After being 1-0 down goals at the end of either half from Jiri Jarosik and Massimo Donati gave Celtic the most dramatic of 2-1 wins, contributing to their second successive qualification for the last 16.

     

     

    CELTIC 2 – 1 Spartak Moscow 2012 (UEFA Champions League)

     

    Gary Hooper and Kris Commons scored the goals that carried Celtic into the last 16 for the third time since the European Cup became the Champions League.

     

     

    Kilmarnock 0 – 6 CELTIC 2012 (Scottish Premiership)

     

    Just an utterly ruthless performance by Neil Lennon’s side in wrapping up the league title after our closest rivals capitulation (both on and off the park) after having led the league by 15 points earlier on in the season. The football on show and the goals scored were a privilege to watch.

     

     

    CELTIC 1 – 0 Rangers 2011 (Scottish Premier League)

     

    Joe Ledley scored the winner from a bullet header to see Celtic finish 2011 on top of the table after trailing by 15 points only a few months earlier. It was an outstanding night for the team, the support and the manager, who was having to deal with issues off the park that were incomparable with any other manager in Scottish football history.

     

     

    CELTIC 2 – 0 The Rangers 2015 (Scottish League Cup Semi-Final)

     

    Ronny Deila led his Celtic side to their first Cup final after defeating the three year old lower league Club from across the city. The victory was crucial for Deila as he may not have survived had his team failed to see off the plucky underdogs from Govan. As it turned out the win acted as a springboard for Deila and his troops to complete the domestic double of League and League Cup in his debut season.

     

     

    Manchester United 3 – 4 CELTIC 2001 (Ryan Giggs Testimonial)

     

    OK, so it wasn’t a ‘competitive’ fixture but there’s no way you would have known that had you watched it! It was a feisty affair that quite clearly both teams were desperate to win. In a stunning end-to-end game (in which even Neil Lennon managed to score!) the Hoops emerged victorious against a star-studded United side that were fresh from winning the English Premiership. It was certainly a feather in the cap for O’Neill and the players.

     

     

    Hope you all enjoyed my 30@30 list, although I’m sure you will all likely hold your own opinions about which games should be ranked above others etc. At a time when there are so many issues surrounding the Club and Scottish Football as a whole it hopefully serves as a reminder to us all just how much joy Celtic has brought to our lives.

  9. Delaneys Dunky on

    Robin

     

     

    They Hibs and Dundee Utd fans can be a bit mental. :)

     

    Enjoy Muse, looking forward to seeing them in Spain in July.

  10. Excellent article Paul.

     

    Re reading your predictions from 2011, how precient.

     

    You certainly are one of those clever clogs ole Dontbrattbackinanger refers to often.

     

     

    EC67

  11. The Battered Bunnet on

    Smith’s comment are little more than a dog whistle to the mob.

     

     

    Irresponsible at best. Reprehensible in all other circumstances.

  12. saltires en sevilla on

    Huntlybhoy

     

     

     

    Superb list of games.

     

     

    Agree with almost all of them maybe have Boavista away above Liverpool away.

     

    Attended both and believe me the aftermatch celebrations in Oporto outshone and outlived the one in Liverpool

     

     

    More than a few Grown men cried that night!

     

     

    On holiday sur med at the moment, so might offer you a wee list dating back to early 70’s (going to games since ’67 but far too young to remember much more than the players as icons)

     

     

    HH

  13. If? And hopefully there isn’t, any trouble, Smith should be taken to account on that article it’s downright trouble making and bang out of order, I can only imagine if an ex Celtic manager came away with that tirade, Lord almighty he would get ran out of town, but as I said the SMSM have to take blame as well, it’s just that people not right in the head will read that and act on it unfortunately, it’s mind games that are definitely not needed.

  14. 67Heaven .. CHALLENGING THE LIE ..I am wee Oscar...... Ipox belongs to the creditors on

    Huntlybhoy86

     

     

    I feel WGS delivered the decisive blow….great post BTW

  15. CultsBhoy can not relate to Celtic Board ambitions on or off the park on

    Inevitable the minute Newcomer reached the top level of Scottish football that certain mouthpieces who have held their tongues would have their say. I suspect Smith , Souness will only be the start of it. I welcome their views as equally inevitable that cats will come out of bags the more they open their traps.

     

    I also wonder if breaking the conspiracy of silence will lead to recriminations among those involved when they start to turn on each other. There is no doubt some, maybe many of them have been mugged off, taken advantage of through placing blind faith in each other. Murray will be most vulnerable as doubtless he is the key protagonist in stitching his fellow Huns up.

     

    I think those taken advantage of have matured and now realise that their reputations have been ever tarnished through naivety. Nothing like highly competitive ‘WATP’ mentalities being scorned and made a fool of, to incite retribution.

     

     

    On a personal level I’m looking forward to watching the chaos that is about to ensue.

     

    I’m equally pleased that Smith is clearly eaten up by bitterness, guilt, anger, false injustice etc.

     

     

    Bring on the rest…and most importantly lets rub it in on Sunday.

  16. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    Let’s be honest about this whole Smith statement nonsense.

     

     

    Cos nonsense it is,nothing more. Had he come out with his pish in any other country in the world-including every banana republic you care to mention-he would have been ridiculed,thrown to the lions.

     

     

    Here,he is lionised. Big difference. Small minds.

  17. Saltires en Sevilla,

     

     

    That would be great to read!

     

     

    I deliberated quite a bit over the UEFA Cup games and to an extent I agree with you (I just remember the games being torturous to watch!) In terms of importance the Boavista game wins hands down but for pure footballing enjoyment I think Anfield edges it.

  18. saltires en sevilla on

    Smith primed McCoist for his sleekit comments to Lenny. ( watch the video again!)

     

     

    Consider all the advantages he had as a manager – 100’s of millions spent on EBT enhanced players, a compliant press and Mibbery at it’s finest.

     

     

    Still, he couldn’t come close to Jock Stein for humility, style, quality or class.

     

     

    Bitter, dangerous man. nursing his wrath to keep it warm…

  19. ballymenatoybhoy on

    not sure why we are giving Walter air-time – OF has been toxic and always will be – end of! Ur either in or out and I am in! And yes as NL rightly said Scottish football needs Rangers back and also the Hibs and it would also be nice to see Falkirk up there 2! Hah! move forward is what I say – some are stuck in the goldfish bowl! And I would love to see the paranoia fade away 2 but then I guess life and celtic would be 2 boring! Oh yes and nobody is perfect not least in some elements of Celtic! I hate this perfect world which we are being shoved in2 – 1 little example is yellow 4 taking ur top off & potentially in LG’s case a RED if u do it 2wice!! Love is blind & I love celtic yes even the imperfections and the paranoia amongst seemingly quite a few of U! I also respect all opinions – think you know mine now. On another point funny how we don’t hear the clammer for Alan Stubbs to be our “saviour” anymore – how about we switch to Peter Houston – and yes that Moyes lad has a great tradition of winning silverware – so fickle we can be – however would rather be fickle than perfect!! Any day! Hail Hail!

  20. The Battered Bunnet on

    “Whatever part of my club is dependent on Rangers I am willing to lose.”

     

     

    One of the most resonant and influential assertions of the day.

     

     

    Around 80% of Celtic supporters subscribed to it. The SFA apparatchiks have hung their coats on the 20% who didn’t.

  21. I like many others will have noticed that since “they” have been out of the top flight, there has little or no violence surrounding games in the SP Hell, none! Must be a coincidence,eh.

     

    I have taken a bet with an English friend who is caught up with all the hype and have given him 3 goals of a start, money in the bank methinks.

     

    The sheer arrogance of newco is way beyond staggering and really oor Wattie should be put before the firing squad.

     

    Hail Hail

     

    KINGLuBO

  22. THE BATTERED BUNNET on 13TH APRIL 2016 11:30 AM

     

     

    Hopefully our slow sales for Sunday will finally make the SFA wake up to the fact they backed the wrong %-age.

  23. weebobbycollins on

    Huntlybhoy…I’ll do another list when I’m turning 60 and we can compare them…see you then ;0)

     

     

    Aye, and it will come around quicker than you think….forget the future–remember the past–live in the present.

  24. BLANTYREKEV on 12TH APRIL 2016 6:28 PM. From last thread .

     

     

    —————————–

     

     

    An absolute gem of a post my friend . As many will know I live in a tiny Ayrshire village , a village where everyone knows everyone . Where banter between both sets of fans was friendly . Not anymore I have notice a real bitterness emanating from the Sevco,s . Something never seen in this village before . If that’s happening here ,then serious trouble is brewing . Anyone going on Sunday stay close , safety in numbers .and pray celtic give them a thumping ,then maybe they will walk away before the end . HH

  25. 67Heaven,

     

     

    You may well have a point. WGS did a remarkable job in helping us win trophies and make a mark in Europe and he managed to do so with a fraction of the money that Martin O’Neill had available to him. I think both managers were perfect for the Club in their own respective time periods. Strachan would have struggled to have had the same impact as O’Neill did in 2000 and yet I don’t think O’Neill would have coped as well as Strachan did with the task he was faced with in 2005. Both men were tremendous for the Club!

  26. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    JIMTIM

     

     

    I used to have some cracking “discussions” about football wi my mates in Kilwinnining.

     

     

    Since they went bust,not one mention has there been*

     

     

    They know,and they know we know. They also know they’re still FUBAR’d.

     

     

    *actually,there was one. In the early days of Green. One of them told me “Charlie’s got you on the run,we’re back!”

     

     

    Who says you canny drink a pint while pishing yerself laughing,I can multitask wi the best of them. He’s never mentioned it since.

  27. WeeBobbyCollins,

     

     

    Given the way this world works and some of the adversities that life can throw our way I probably shouldn’t tempt fate by assuming I’ll be around to compose another list!

     

     

    Anyway, all my thoughts and energy is focussed on urging the team to a League and Cup double…bring it home Ronny!

  28. My “wee” brother is looking for a family friendly pub in the Blackpool area where he can watch the game on Sunday with his sons (4 & 6) can anyone help please?

  29. traditionalist88 on

    People tend to forget we took a big support to last years semi-final.

     

     

    Celtic fans will support the team. Our enemies would love us to walk away, to coin a phrase. That would be a nice side benefit for them.

     

     

    For now the panic they have over Res 12 speaks volumes.

     

     

    Put them in their place on Sunday. The new Glasgow derby won’t resemble the ‘Old Firm’ when the realisation dawns that they will struggle to compete with resurgent Aberdeen and Hearts.

     

     

    HH

  30. Bmcw. Thanks for the reply . Previous to the past couple of years , a tandem left the village to go to snake mountain , and there was a seat on it . Now a few have left the golf , fishing , bowls clubs to make an appearance . Even Some who couldn,t tell you what was in a ball have started going . I am proud to say we have maintained a supporters club in the village since it’s foundation in 1968 , and still going strong . No art time fans in this village . HH

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