Leigh, Efe, Mikael, Dedryk and Jozo



I got my wish last night, that Leigh Griffiths would reach the 40 goal mark for the season, and what a great goal it was too, memories of Love St ’86. Also delighted Leigh was aware-enough to mimic Henrik’s ” five zero” gesticulation when he reached 50 in 2001.

40 goals for Celtic in a season is a very rare achievement, as Paul John Dykes pointed out this morning, it’s now only been done 13 times in 128 years.  Jimmy McGrory (four times, three in a row) and Henrik Larsson (three times, two in a row), are the only two who have achieved this more than once in their Celtic careers, so Leigh knows what he needs to do next season to get a really special place in the history books.

As for the other pertinent points from last night’s game in Perth, I can cut Stefan Johansen some slack. McDiarmid Park was a farmer’s field not so long ago, and St Johnstone’s first goal looked like it came as a result of a plough intervention.

Efe Ambrose is another story. Last night’s decision to challenge (Logan Bailly) for a ball inside his own six-yard box was inexplicable but consistent with his general awareness this season. When the new manager is in place, someone inside Lennoxtown needs to find the earliest possible moment to sit him down and play the Efe highlights video.

We have a good central defender in Erik Sviatchenko (club captain in the making), and one who could become so in Jozo Simunovic. If Jozo gets himself fit for July we should be well-placed for the qualifiers, but those two aside, we are struggling in central defence.

Out of contract Charlie Mulgrew is in the latter stages of his career, but can be trusted to do a job without causing unnecessary alarm every week. Mikael Lustig’s days as a rampaging full back may be limited by his persistent hip issues, so playing as auxiliary central defender, as he often does for Sweden, works on paper.

I’d be far from confident facing Champions League qualifiers with Efe or Dedryk Boyata, who could still makes Belgium’s Euro’s squad, but if Jozo’s fit, signing a right back, with Mikael covering central defence, feels like an appropriate use of resources.

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  1. BIG WAVY on 12TH MAY 2016 1:14 PM



    Dudu scam.



    Unless you are very sure of yourself, tread warily.

  2. Ruggy



    I said average at best, not below average. True he did have a decent run, but I don’t think I heard anyone


    calling for him to be captain a la Erik Sviatchenko?



    I have an inherent distrust of the players we sign that are injured on arrival, Jozo Simunovic has a history, so did Derk Boeriggter!!!!!!!!



    Not that I’m comparing them, and reckon Jozo will get plenty of game time once he’s fit.



    I’d be looking for another CB because the cover doesn’t instill confidence O’Connell Ambrose, Boyata, or Mulgrew who is also injury prone



    At least two of them could should be moved on?




    I text a few of the bhoys on here earlier.. Mate in the works mates were in Glasgow airport this afternoon heading for a stag weekend and met Brendan Rodgers and got their photos taken with him.



    Mate text them back…prove it… A minute later the photos came through.



    Obviously up for some reason. HH

  4. Neganon2



    There are many things discussed on here that are over my head.


    Football, and Celtic is my interest, and from a purely football perspective, it would certainly make sense to me.


    But we will let Mulgrew leave for free, then spend 1.2 million signing Gavin Gunning, or some useless c@nt from Dundee Utd

  5. An Teach Solais on

    WINNING CAPTAINS. @ 6.39 pm



    Great news about placing advertisements in newspapers of influence.


    I for one am IN


    Please give details of the account to which monies are to be sent asap.


    Better to have the funding in place early to be ready to seize the day!!!!


    Hail, hail y buena suerte.

  6. BSR….


    Boyata will be kept.


    Again I see him merely as cover / back-up.



    Funnily I thought Boyata was starting to put a string of decent performances together. This was before the semi final. Where he was rank rotten, then limped off.



    Not sure he warrants the benefit of doubt through his injury. But the guy has been liability at times, particularly in the early season.



    Ambrose needs no comment. Show him the door, like yesterday.

  7. It might work if our next manager could be a combination of Roy Keane and Brendan Rodgers.



    Roy Rodgers maybe?





  8. Neganon 2



    They will be given every opportunity to contribute and I can assure you that I will let you know if they do.



    When enough pieces of the jigsaw fall into place you start to see the picture.

  9. My daughter sat her National 5 Maths exam today.



    The exam is in 2 parts Non Calc (Non calculator) and Calc (Use of calculator allowed)


    She said the first part was not based on course work and was a bugger. The second part was fine.


    If your child sat the exam today and agrees with this the attached is a petition asking the SQA to review the pass mark (as was done with Higher Maths last year).


    If you child is a genius, please ignore.



    Over 5000 signatures so far, so some kids are not happy.





  10. Geordie Munro on




    Is everyone in your house a potty mouth?







  11. As my very dear friend KoJo would say, If I were king I’d appoint Davie Hay as manager with Henrik there to learn and take up the ropes as and when. I’d appoint Ronny as Academy director.


    That’ it.



    Hail Hail




  12. Ray Winstone's Big Disembodied Heid on

    SFTB. Well if you’ve only got one trick that’s a good one to have.

  13. Like no other on



    Child number 4 sat Nat 5 today. Currently on suicide watch.


    Petition signed. On every device.





  14. McPhail Bhoy on

    An teach RTÉ? You’re having a laugh their go to guy for Scottish football is Roddy Forsyth he’d assure them that there’s nothing to see here!

  15. blantyretim is praying for the Knox family on

    Geordie Munro


    From this morning


    I take it it runs in the family




    Good man!



    My wee girl is very upset and angry.



    She’s studied really hard plus we had a tutor for the last 6 weeks . The improvement in her class work and confidence was massive.



    Now completely destroyed.



    I’ am angry too and considering what I can do as a concerned parent.

  17. Over 7000 signatures now.



    In less than 4 hours.



    Who makes the questions up?



    Something obviously not right.




  18. sixtaeseven - Gardez la Foi on

    My boy (who is French/Scottish) was watching aul’ Didier Deschamps announce his squad for the Euros.


    What an embarrassment of riches for France, says I.


    Aye, says he – commiserating with his ol’ dad, Pity Scotland only have the embarrassment…



    Ach, just as well I’ve got two or three teams to follow at the Euros.



    Scotland are still eons away from participating in any of these tournies – merci encore, les blazers au cinquieme etage de Hampden





    FRANCE (hosts of EURO 2016):


    Goalies :


    Hugo Lloris (Tottenham/ANG), Steve Mandanda (Marseille), Benoît Costil (Rennes).



    Defence :


    Bacary Sagna (Manchester City/ANG), Christophe Jallet (Lyon), Raphaël Varane (Real Madrid/ESP), Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal/ANG), Eliaquim Mangala (Manchester City/ANG), Jérémy Mathieu (FC Barcelone/ESP), Patrice Evra (Juventus Turin/ITA), Lucas Digne (AS Rome/ITA).



    Mid field:


    Blaise Matuidi (Paris), Paul Pogba (Juventus Turin/ITA), Lassana Diarra (Marseille), Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle), N’Golo Kanté (Leicester/ANG), Yohan Cabaye (Crystal Palace/ANG).





    Olivier Giroud (Arsenal/ANG), Antoine Griezmann (Atlético Madrid/ESP), André-Pierre Gignac (Tigres/MEX), Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich/ALL), Dimitri Payet (West Ham/ANG), Anthony Martial (Manchester United/ANG).



    Benzema (sex-tape) and Sakho (drugs) out, but Ben Arfa could still make it if he screws the nut…



    SCOTLAND (for summer friendlies):




    Scott Bain (Dundee), David Marshall (Cardiff), Allan McGregor (Hull)





    Christophe Berra (Ipswich), Gordon Greer (Brighton), Grant Hanley (Blackburn), Alan Hutton (Aston Villa), Russell Martin (Norwich), Charlie Mulgrew (should be resting…), Callum Paterson (Hearts) Andrew Robertson (Hull), Lee Wallace (Sevco)





    Ikechi Anya (Watford), Barry Bannan (Sheffield Wednesday), Oliver Burke (Nottingham Forest), Darren Fletcher (West Brom), Shaun Maloney (Hull), James McArthur (Crystal Palace), John McGinn (Hibernian), Barry McKay (Sevco), Matt Phillips (QPR), Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth), Robert Snodgrass (Hull)





    Steven Fletcher (Marseille), Chris Martin (Derby), Ross McCormack (Fulham), Steven Naismith (Norwich)

  19. Like no other on



    You would think after last year’s Higjher maths debacle this kind of thing wouldn’t be happening again. My girl’s exactly the same as yours – tried her hardest and and is just devastated. This will affect their confidence for all the exams they’ve still to sit. Main protest would surely have to come from the schools and teachers, but I’m not holding my breath.



  20. An Teach Solais on



    I am sure that if sufficient Irish based Celtic supporters phoned in to Radio Donnybrook phone-in programmes some publicity could be generated. No point in using UTV owned channel. Any suggestions are better than sitting around moaning and groaning IMHO. Le meas.

  21. Thunder Road on




    If you were king, it would be a touch ironic as Kojo’s opinion 2 years ago, was that Davie Hay was too old for the gig and it required a younger person.


    Remember it well as i felt it was an ageist attitude and had a wee moan at him about it.


    btw……at the time id said id like Davie to be in charge, so it might not be such a bad thing if you were ;)




    If you look at some of the comments on the petition teachers have commented how difficult it was.



    As you say the knock on effect could be damaging too, thankfully that was my daughters 4th exam out of six.



    I will be in touch with the school tomorrow to get teacher feedback and will decide what I could do next.



    Very disappointing for the kids.



    Best wishes to your child for the remaining exams.



    Kids are so resilient. I hope!

  23. Philbhoy



    The Minx’s bhoy was sitting Maths today too. I think there’s a fair chance they’ll lower the mark for each grade if enough people sign the petition.

  24. The SQA will adjust the criteria for achieving the different levels, as they always do, to take into account the content of the Nat.5 Course, degrees of difficulty of individual questions, candidates’ responses and the average marks scored.



    A petition or complaining that the maths Exam was too hard will not be a factor for lowering the pass marks.



    Similarly, as has always been the case, if the exam is considered too easy, again using the same criteria, then the pass marks will be adjusted accordingly.



    SQA CFC.

  25. The Battered Bunnet @ 9:42 am






    I disagree with your view that SPFL managers “have been mighty slow in working out how to defeat our wide open defence”.




    Quite the contrary actually. Pretty much every team sets up the same way against us, and largely it works.




    I saw ‘largely’ because it works to the extent that they get chances to score according to the system used, and these chances follow the same pattern, but the key difference is that the finishing is generally not good enough.




    Were standard SPFL clubs to have strikers of the standard of the teams who have beaten us in Europe, our system would have been toast long ago.”





    I started with the most robust evidence available i.e games lost or drawn to those that tactically found us out. Until the league was won, only 3 league games saw us fully found out and losing all 3 points-



    Aberdeen in Sept.


    Well in December


    and Aberdeen again in February.



    We lost each of those games by 2:1 – hardly a doing. Both Aberdeen losses wre at Pittodrie- only Well beat us in the league at CP.




    on 8 occasions, their tactical cocksuredness caused us to drop points in 8 games:-



    Killie (a) – August


    Hearts (h) – Sept


    Killie (h)- Nov


    Hearts (a) – Dec


    Hamilton (a) Feb


    Dundee (h) – March


    Dundee (a) – April


    Ross Co. (h) – April



    In the course of those draws we conceded 2 goals to Killie in the away match, 2 to Hearts in the away match. Both Dundee draws were 0:0 and we lost 1 goal to Hamilton and Ross. Co. We dropped 4 games at home and 4 away which may be a surprise if you expect most of the trouble to happen when we are away.



    On 25 occasions out of 37, we failed to get mugged by the opposition that knew how to play us. Yes, unlike last year, with the same soft defensive system, we lost more goals- 31 so far only 7 fewer than Hearts though they have one more game than us to play (tonight). That might be evidence that opposition managers have gradually learned to find us out or it may be evidence that several pairings of CB have failed to achieve what Van Dijk/ Denayer managed last year. Certainly European teams found us out in both these seasons so I will cite that as evidence that the Scottish coaches were slow and slower to find us out.



    There were two preferred ways of setting up against us:-



    Version A- Park The Buses


    Version B- Park The Buses but have an occasional go once you’ve turned the crowd.



    Very rarely- I’d say only with Hamilton at CP and Aberdeen (on all occasions) was there a more adventurous or pressing approach. Ross County were expansive once and got beat.



    It is one thing to devise a style that you think will discomfit Celtic. In all 37 games we have played, the managers have had that intention. Making it work for them is a different matter and they mostly failed because while they were considering how to discomfit us, we were discomfiting them at the other end and we managed that on 86 occasions so far.



    That is the harder evidence. You assert that we have conceded more chances. Do the stats on chances created against us reflect that? If there were so many chances created and not just looming large in our frightened subjective memory, we should see that reflected in the stats for Shots on Target and shots off target by the opposition. Are they palpably poorer? Are they palpably poorer over both seasons of RD’s system of play? Or are they in keeping with previous seasons?



    Leaving aside the proven hard evidence and the yet to be established softer evidence, your final point about strikers is an argument akin to “If your auntie had baws…” type. If the opposition managers did not have the strikers to effectively implement their system then why the hell were they asking them to? That’s more wishful thinking than tactically outthinking.



    After all, who were the great Legia strikers who found us out?- I can’t recall a name.


    Who were the superior Molde strikers? Jo-Inge, our reject?



    No, we lost to more astute European coaches and midfielders- there were no Lewandowskis or Larssons fielded by those Polish and Swedish teams.



    I stand by my argument re the quality of SPFL coaching.

  26. Philbhoy on 12th May 2016 7:29 pm



    Thanks, exactly as my son described it, signed.

  27. Congratulations to Anthony Ralston on his Celtic debut last night. I’ve known the Bhoy since he started primary school alongside my daughter and our paths have crossed many times since. A credit to his family and a dream come true for him. I hear he still can’t believe it’s happened…







    Olivia has signed the second petition too and we’ve passed it on.






    Between both petitions there is now more than 10,000 signatures. What sort of numbers are required before the SQA would review the pass mark



    Also, who makes up the questions? is it practising teachers?

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