Lagerbielke arrives not a minute too soon


Celtic’s summer spend continued yesterday with the arrival of 23-year-old Swedish central defender Gustaf Lagerbielke from Elfsborg for a reported £3m fee.  At 1.93m, Gustav is tall, 8cm taller than Cameron Carter-Vickers and Maik Nawrocki, only Christopher Jullien (1.96m) was taller in recent times.

Across the squad Celtic are a small team.  Purists who still marvel at that Barcelona side will tell you they were the best team ever and the shortest European champions of the 21st century, so height does not make a difference if you are good enough.  You will, though, remember that Celtic scored three goals against Barcelona in our 2012 Champions League games, two were from high crosses.  At the very least, we need tall central defenders, if not full backs and strikers.

When all are fit and games really matter, Maik and Gustaf will compete for a spot beside Cameron.  Normally, I would be reluctant to push a new arrival straight into a big game, but Sunday is worthy of consideration.  Cameron retired at halftime after straining a hamstring at Pittodrie, he is not out of contention for the trip to Kilmarnock.  He is, however, so critical to Celtic, if he misses the important games next month, it would be a huge blow to the club.

If this was a league game, I would have no hesitation in playing both new central defenders, it is early enough in the season to be able to take a risk.  Our League Cup is, however, on the line.   I dont’s subscribe to the ‘It’s only the League Cup’ view so cherished by losers.  If Celtic were knocked out of a cup tournament in August, it would give an unwelcome boost to everyone else in Scottish football.  Fragile managers would see their chance of survival by winning a few more games and collecting some silverware.  Brendan has a big decision to make.

Welcome to Celtic, Gustaf.  Your arrival is not a minute too soon.

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  1. Paulsthroughball88



    Ref Engerland rugby



    That’s very funny.



    I am sure an eminent KC could help them win the legal battle to prove it.



    The draw really is so helpful to them that they literally only have to win 2 tough matches to win the cup.



    A semi final and a final v one of France / All Blacks / Boks / Ireland may sound tough but Engerland will have played no one of note by then. Only Japan / Argentina / Wales whereas the others will have played at least 3 brutal contests. Eg Ireland would have played Boks / Scotland and France or All Blacks before England. Similarly the Boks would have played Ireland Scotland and France or NZ.



    It is the most ridiculously unbalanced draw ever.



    Apart from this weeks Scottish league cup of course.

  2. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Good morning CQN



    Great read back. Brilliant posts.



    My nibbles if I may.



    Jack Butland.


    Undeniably decent pedigree.


    Questionable fitness.


    Sevco resource management is a “punt” business.


    Not all punts fail.



    Gene – agree with your earlier sentiments.


    Well done Hibs and Hearts.


    I think Hearts have a chance of reaching a group?


    Hibs don’t – if they can get a draw out of Villa in one of the legs they’ll do well.



    PTB88 – I rarely commit to certainty of any kind about future events. No one knows.



    … but I don’t think you need worry about England winning the RWC.

  3. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Transfer window wheeling and dealing is fascinating.



    Fabrizio Romano’s Twitter provides decent snippets but not full picture.



    He’s the front man for a network of hacks across Europe – which is why he NEVER publicises Celtic incomings.



    His network don’t know jacks**t and don’t want us to get exposure.



    Compare and contrast with Sevco. If they signed a remittance for an order of toilet paper he’d announce it.

  4. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Amusing though how “excited by the project” has made it into the lexicon of players signing for a new club.



    All lovely and fluffy but, at the end of the day, fundamentally



    … it’s still just one guy telling 11 guys on a rectangle of grass (or carpet) how to kick a ba’

  5. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Towards end of this window I’ll be interested to see if either or both of Liverpool or Man United can create financial capacity to secure Sofyan Amrabat from Fiorentina.



    12 months ago, doing the deal would have been a breeze.



    Then the pesky guy goes and has a great World Cup …



    .. and Chelsea spend £170m in two young midfielders.

  6. If anyone has a spare ticket for Kilmarnock on Sunday .


    I would gladly buy it .


    I was unsuccessful in the ballot.



  7. paulsthroughball88 on




    Not worried at all, just trying to highlight the absurdity of attempts to add the combined total of trophies won by 2 different clubs eg, Sevco and Rangers (1872-2012).



    It’s my second attempt at pointing it out, I had previously said we could add Aberdeen’s 4 top tier titles to ours to overtake the imaginary ’55’.



    No hurry anyway, Rangers won’t be adding to their total, and Sevco are still trying to overtake Motherwell in terms of league titles.

  8. Magic to see Stephen Welsh extend his contract. Great move for everyone. I hope he gets a chance to shine under Brendan.

  9. I agree Welsh should be given a chance. I reckon he’ll play on Sunday. Oh, and on the signings front I suggest priority is a GK and LB. In every other position I think we’re strong enough. New deals for Reo and Abada vital.

  10. FASSREIFEN on 18TH AUGUST 2023 11:25 AM



    We haven’t replaced Jota’s X factor and I think our midfield is all a bit same-y and in desperate need for some athleticism and creativity. Despite early optimism and a valid view that we might repeat the 3 in on the last day, I think we are leaving ourselves with too much to do for Europe this season in trnsfer business.



    It’s no transitional year, despite what some would say. We should be aiming for an improvement on last year’s underwhelming outcome there.




  11. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    PTB88 – cheers.



    Looking forward to RWC actually.



    Gut tells me it’s the Southern Hemisphere again.



    All Blacks look great.


    South Africa improving in time for tournament (as always)


    France form is a worry


    Ireland need to find a way of navigating the tournament – nearly men a few times.

  12. paulsthroughball88 on




    Yeah, I’ll be watching, selectively during the group stages though.



    Think you’re being generous to Ireland regarding near misses – still to get past the quarter final stage, though 2 very tight games lost at that stage vs Australia and France.

  13. paulsthroughball88 on




    Sorry, misread ‘nearly men’for ‘near misses’.



    Not quite the same thing.

  14. The Rangers vs Greenock Morton | Viaplay Cup Ticket Information



    Club News 04/08/2023



    The club can today confirm that we have received our allocation of tickets from Rangers for our match on Saturday 19th August. We are pleased to say we have received 2,600 tickets and a large part of the reason for this is the excellent backing we took to Parkhead in January.






    The Ton have shocked us in the past. I am informed they are playing well and have been scoring goals, allthough beaten last week,



    they couldnt could they ?

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