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Last season’s Celtic edge over the line

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Shortly after Elfsborg cracked one against the crossbar last night I quickly scanned the Celtic team and had a thought.  For the second season in a row we are taking on the Swedish champions but we’re missing two of last season’s big performers and none of this season’s new signings were ready for action.  In short, this was Celtic 2012 minus Wanyama and Hooper. No wonder we looked unstructured.

Joe Ledley brought some vision to central midfield when he arrived, hopefully banishing the Brown-Kayal partnership to hidden corners of our mind once and for all.  Anthony Stokes playing at the front of a wide diamond was equally effective.  With the signing of Amido Balde, bids in for Kevin Doyle, and the addition of a wide-delivery-expert Derk Boerrigter, clearly Neil Lennon has a different plan for the months to come….. so there’s no real need for me to state the obvious.

Defensively we looked solid after a shaky opening few minutes.  I’m not the only one who was a bit nervous about Efe Ambrose after he was (again) caught underneath a long ball, but he settled quickly.  As we know to our cost, being great for 87 minutes is not how Champions League reputations are made, you are judged on your how vulnerable you become in your weak moments.

I said yesterday that Samaras and Commons were the two players who could cope at this level, which became plainly obvious during the game.  Georgios was the one player who frightened Elfsborg, they either swamped him with four defenders or fouled him before he got near goal.

Kris is simply the most intelligent footballer we have.  He is not the fastest, will never have the best stats, but he understands how games are won and is able to act accordingly.  Without these two players Celtic would be distinctly vanilla.

Thanks to those who sent over their 1254125 Great Scottish Run details, I’ll have them on the page later.
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  1. Greenwells Glory on

    Hi Ghuys, Salve salve;-

     

    Just took up Bt offer for free sports the very nice young lady informed me that it is free for 12 months (ESPN too) and that they are planning to keep it free for their broadband customers after that. I advise you to check it out.

     

    Greenwells

     

    Corripe Cervisiam

  2. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Quonno. I think fella you have hit the nail on the head if we do not qualify for the CL group stages it will be down to poor forward planning as we knew the likely hood of both Wanyama and Hooper leaving but really waited until it happened to bring in replacements very negative indeed. H.H.

  3. blantyretim

     

     

     

    14:06 on 1 August, 2013

     

     

     

    And our goal came from a right footed cross from izzie.

     

    ——————–

     

    He shold do it more often,

     

    Last night I noticed Sammi Having a wee go at Izzy for not releasing the pass early and Kris letting Tony Stokes know he shoul have crossed earlier instead of taking a touch.

     

     

    I like leaders who ask for more of team mates (in a good way) :))

  4. The Token Tim on

    TallyBhoy,

     

     

    therein lieth the difference.

     

     

    We have real supporters with a few plastics thrown in. But the numbers are small in terms of members.

     

     

    They have few clubs with real supporters as it were. But plastics in the thousands.

     

     

    To give you an idea, for a couple of years I occasionally visited the Kuala Lumpur CSC in Malaysia to watch the games. Probably around 40 members or so, almost exclusively ex-Pats. Usually only around 15-20 for non-huns game.

     

     

    The Liverpool SC in KL – 10,000 members. Almost all Malaysians.

     

     

    TV Money talks.

     

     

    HAIL! HAIL!

     

    Token

  5. The Token Tim on

    Livibhoy,

     

     

    been meaning to ask you. Did you used to post under a different name?

     

    Begin with a C and end in 8?

     

     

    Or am i taking 2+2 and making 5?

     

     

    Suppose its better than taking 50,000 and making 500,000,000! :-)

     

     

    HAIL! HAIL!

     

    Token

  6. I certainly won’t be happy if we do sign Kevin Doyle…..at 29 he has no re-sale value, another no goal scoring forward – another with no real pace. has Lennon learned nothing from the hapless waste of money Murphy.

     

     

    If our scouts cannot source someone of better quality that this, then I’d suggest something wrong – badly wrong.

     

     

    But no point in signing someone like Finboggossan (I wish) if we do not have players (Commons / Rogic apart) who can see a run and make an accurate pass. Too many runners (half paced with the head down & long aimless punts) for any striker to really make an impact.

  7. Ellboy - I am Neil Lennon, YNWA. on

    chairbhoy

     

     

    14:52 on 1 August, 2013

     

     

    Cheers for the detailed reply and I agree with 95% of what you say. In fact it’s pretty much bang on with the way I see it too and probably most others also. The only part in which we disagree on is Kevin Doyle. A few years ago i would have said yes but now at this time if he is bought? Then he should be no more than a reserve striker. I also agree with you in regards to Wanyama, as he in my opinion has the ability to be one of the worlds best. Hoops on the other hand while very effective for us will never be a world beater. So out of the two of them and if we show some ambition, then IMV Hooper should be easier to replace.

     

     

    Showing ambition isnt Kevin Doyle – I’d much rather stick with Tony Watt, push Sammy through the middle or even try to convert James Forrest into a striker. Also if he does come in, then what does that say about Amido Balde? He might be big and raw but for £2 mill, he should be ready and able to fulfil a similar role.

     

     

    I think we all see where we need to strengthen and it’s not by numbers, no we need better quality. Derk looks to be one that will do that for us, I just hope we’ve identified one or two others in a similar mold.

     

     

    HH!

  8. All these Asian fans for these EPL clubs are only supporting these teams because they watch them every week. There is no loyalty to the club. How many switched to Real madrid when Beckham went there? We have proper supporters world wide who are Celtic daft. They are much more than just fans watching games they live and breathe the club. They have established supporters clubs. They contribute on blogs and forums. They have ties in Scotland or Ireland. They buy official merchandise. How manny EPL fans in Asia and the like buy official merchandise? All dodgy shirts.

     

    I have been in India where there is zero interest in football. Almost none at all. They have around 10 llive EPL games every weekend and they would rather watch cricket. If you want to buy a football jersey it is a months salary. No way they are going to buy one even if they were interested.

     

    I have also been to Kenya and they are football daft. They support the clubs who have African players. I was there before Wanyama but took 50-70 Celtic jerseys with me. Kids were fighting over them.

     

    If Celtic can perform at the top level in the CL we will gain new supporters but for a Scottish club our support is frightening world wide. There is no other club I know of who has scarves/jerseys in almost every city in the world in at least one bar.

     

    Celtic are huge!

     

     

    LB

  9. The Token Tim on

    SOAL,

     

     

    is that the stats for numbers of supporters clubs in Australia for Celtic and Chelski respectively??

     

     

    HAIL! HAIL!

     

    Token

  10. The Token Tim on

    SOAL,

     

     

    thought it must have been, given the thread running in the blog just now.

     

     

    HAIL! HAIL!

     

    Token

  11. The Token Tim on

    Livibhoy,

     

     

    no probs.

     

    Thanks for reply.

     

     

    HAIL! HAIL!

     

    Token

     

     

    2+2=5 CSC

  12. Joe Filippis Haircut

     

    15:13 on

     

    1 August, 2013

     

    Quonno. I think fella you have hit the nail on the head if we do not qualify for the CL group stages it will be down to poor forward planning as we knew the likely hood of both Wanyama and Hooper leaving but really waited until it happened to bring in replacements very negative indeed. H.H.

     

     

    Someone actually agreeing with me.

     

    I must be losing my touch.

  13. I really doubt we will sign more than two new players.

     

     

    We will hopefully get a new striker in before the Champions League Play Off round and provided we qualify we will get one more midfielder.

     

     

    Do we need a defensive midfielder or a playmaker more??

  14. I can’t do the link – thing on my I-phone.

     

     

    However google .

     

     

    Man U 4 , Celtic 0 – Michael Hanscom

     

     

    Then read the thread.

     

     

    TT

  15. Token

     

     

    That’s the nature of the beast I’m afraid.

     

     

    We all know that Celtic have a worldwide fanbase, with CSCs scattered all over the globe. As you rightly point out many CSCs have few members, mostly consisting of expats or members of their families who were born in the country where the CSC happens to be based.

     

     

    Contrast that with the Asian phenomenon where, literally, millions ‘support’ the likes of Chelsea, Man Utd, Liverpool… by dint of watching them on TV every week competing in the (so-called) ‘best league in the world’.

     

     

    HH!!

  16. Colm @cohcfc

     

    Celtics new signing has 1st Press Conference. Journalists ask about Rangers. Celtic should escort these journalists out the door.

  17. The Token Tim

     

     

    The points were originally about a Celtic v Rangers match abroad and that we would embarrass them with a bigger support. It went a bit bonkers after that.

     

    Rangers are deid anyway!

     

     

    LB

  18. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    The Battered Bunnet 12:32

     

    Also interesting to note that the overseas fan base is set at 50,000 worldwide, of which only 1000 were in contact with the club. Charles Green’s genius was in transforming these 50,000 into 500 Million at a stroke…

     

     

    I guess if you work 27.4 hours a day anything is possible…..

  19. Celtic’s new signing Derk Boerrigter brought a little colour to his first media conference, accidentally saying Rangers’ league position is “s***t for them”.

  20. ASonOfDan

     

    15:35 on

     

    1 August, 2013

     

    Colm @cohcfc

     

    Celtics new signing has 1st Press Conference. Journalists ask about Rangers. Celtic should escort these journalists out the door.

     

     

    Shouldn’t let them in the door more like it.

     

    They need us far more than we need them.

  21. When I came to Ajax I played very good but because of a back injury I played less games. When I got back I was on the bench but thought I was too good to sit on the bench. I want to play every game here

  22. Paul 67,

     

     

    If Lennon knew the season was kicking off so early why was there not a plan of action?

     

     

    I can only assume it was paying wages that didn’t need paid?

     

     

    everyone blames Lennon but like us all we abide by the rules if management.

     

     

    the fact here is simple……. Pay as little as possible to maximize profit…..

     

     

    signing players is not easy, I accept that BUT don’t sell unless you have replacements. That we have not done which infuriates me more……

     

     

    they all KNEW…

     

     

    SPC

  23. I like his modesty…

     

     

    I’m a left winger, I’m very fast, good dribbler, good crosser and with a good shot.

  24. The Token Tim on

    TT,

     

     

    sort of sums up the “plastic fan” nicely does it not?

     

     

    Size of a soccer field indeed!

     

     

    HAIL! HAIL!

     

    Token

  25. Brian Healy @Brian_Healy

     

    If the Ibrox roof is in such a bad state, where are the paratroopers going to abseil from when the next Armed Forces day comes around?

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