Levein culpable for Hearts red card, keeping Toljan on his toes


Whenever the next History of Celtic is written, yesterday’s 1-2 win at Tynecastle will hardly merit a mention, but right now, it feels like a hugely significant night.  You, me and everyone else in the country know that if Celtic can win a game like that in the 93rd minute, they are going to win the league.

A few observations:

Passing the ball along our own 6 yard line was always likely to lead to conceding a goal.  It looked like an individual error but it was actually a systemic mistake.  Notwithstanding this, we need to stick with the plan.  Opponents pack tight against Celtic, anything we can do that will tempt them forward, like passing this deep in our own box, should be done.  The answer is to get better at it.

I was worried when I saw Jeremy Toljan substituted for Mikael Lustig, the latter a player Neil Lennon signed for Celtic.  The worry is that players will suspect that Neil is favouring one of this own.  Jeremy should be back in the starting line up on Saturday.

Just as important as not having favourites, is making sure players who are only here for a few months are kept on their toes.  If Mikael can be used to get the best out of Jeremy, use him.  We have seen a few defenders arrive from the Bundesliga (Andreas, Edson, Marvin) who never convinced they gave everything they had.

When Neil Lennon’s excitement at getting the job died down, his mood must have dropped at the realisation he would have to play such an unfamiliar central mid combination.

While there was a large period of the game when we had a man advantage but still did not dominate midfield, we saw three good individual performances.  Nir Bitton was at his deep lying best, even if he gave possession away twice by shooting from ridiculous distances.  Scott Brown’s contribution for the winner was delicious.

Pass of the night came from Ewan Henderson, who took the Hearts midfield out of the game with a 40 yard slide-ruler to Scott Sinclair for the opening goal.

Five minutes before half time I predicted Hearts would get a man sent off before the break (I have witnesses).  Craig Levein bemoaned Jamie Brandon’s recklessness after the game, but it was in keeping with the rest of his teammates until that point.  Hearts figured their best chance was to batter Celtic players into hiding.  Levein should consider his part in the red card.  It was a consequence of Hearts’ tactics.

The only concern on the night came elsewhere.  Hibs won their fourth game in succession, away and with 10 men.  Saturday’s Scottish Cup quarterfinal will be an epic.

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  1. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    JIMTHETIM53 on 28TH FEBRUARY 2019 10:57 PM


    Wish there was an all night Celtic radio channel. Music, chat, phone ins, interviews and no Hugh Keevins!






    Brilliant idea.



    ” Someone ” should pick that up .

  2. Macjay, If I was running it I would be hoping for you joining in on the phone-ins to add a bit of debate!

  3. SID on 28TH FEBRUARY 2019 6:16 PM



    Tontine Tim, Serious question. You say our European failed ex manager. Given his record is. CL group stage, finished bottom, CL group stage, finished 3rd last 32 Europa Last 32 Europa



    Just trying to gauge expectations, do you think our next permanent manager will better that record and do you expect him too? I’ve compared his record too Strachan and Lennys, very similar.



    Although both reached CL last 16, Strachan twice, both had one season where we played one tie in Europe, oot before the schools went back. Strachan also had the advantage of automatic qualification. Im thinking careful what you wish for.



    *I’m an oul haun on here and was at our first European game against Valencia, 2 years prior to this when I was in 1st year at high school my da took me tae Parkheid tae watch us play Sedan, who were no mugs BTW and would go on to win the French Cup that season, in the Anglo-Franco-Scottish Friendship Cup, down 0-3 quite a healthy crowd showed up and despite losing a very early goal plus a missed penalty by a young ten thirty we drew 3-3. Our team which had 9 current or future internationals also included 4 players who would go on to win Big Cup winners medals.



    On a cold December night 4 years later I along with another healthy crowd watched us tie 0-0 with a super Barca side complete with the aging but still Mighty Magyar Sándor Kocsis, we were already 1-3 down from the first leg and away goals at that time did not count as double, but who cared it was a European night and the chance to see a living legend, I also witnessed one of the finest attacking full back displays in my young life that night by Uruguayan Julio César Benítez, the Jungle loved his exploits, a player that big Tam allegedly modeled his career on.



    Why am I mentioning this and what’s the point your saying to yourself, well European nights at Parkheid were special, especially during the Big Mhan’s reign, standing in the Jungle on a cool night the lights blazing down on the well manicured turf, the tannoy blaring out the likes of “Jet” by Paul McCartney, the Celtic end chanting “john greig’s a womble” mimicking a popular song of the time, these indeed were happy days in so many many ways in the ground I loved so well, and still do.



    And yet the last couple of seasons I’ve lost interest in them, just hoping we widnae get humphed, humiliated and embarrassed. That’s what the European flop has given us, Man City notwithstanding. Even the much maligned Mogga performed better winning away in Moscow and when dropping intae the Europa tying in Hamburg and Vienna and after being 1 up losing 2 late goals away to the eventual group winners Hapoel Tel-Aviv.



    I would be remiss if I didn’t compliment him on the 7 trophies, but only 2 are titles, WGS brought us 3 as well as 2 LC and 1 SC. NFL also won 3 plus 2 SC; even Ronny D won 2 and 1 LC and as we are all aware was robbed of a potential treble.



    Why did Buck manage to get 2 trebles, IMHO he was a stronger character to the quiet unassuming Viking and stood up tae the officials baffling them with his obvious intelligence plus it really was a 1 horse race, nae chauncey snarling in his face or naesurname cheating with spending OPM



    However, Europe s is the benchmark and that’s’ where he flopped, we’ll learn from that is up there with taking it on the chin, at least he won’t have tae worry about away games on the continent where he is right now down in the East Midlands.



    I don’t hold any ill will against him even though he shafted us the supporters of the club we all love and scammed us intae thinking he did. But that photie of him and his assistant laughing and joking at Lennoxtown the day after another contentious game where the smsm were all over us and his countryman was piling merr scheitd and lies on our support was a bit hard to take, it was possibly after he had told the players he was jacking it in and was trying tae steal our backroom staff.



    Come Sunday, come on the Hornets.

  4. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    JIMTHETIM53 on 28TH FEBRUARY 2019 11:09 PM




    By ” debate ” I presume you mean controversy .



    Hee hee .




    Seriously . Magic idea.


    A former teacher of mine , Jimmy Gordon , started Radio Clyde in `71 ?



    Stoatin`. Stoatin`. Stoatin `




    Great idea that all night Celtic radio, it would save me talking


    to myself when i’m on the rid biddy and the rest of the world is


    in bed.


    H.H Mick

  6. Asupporterwhogotlucky on

    macjay1 for Neil Lennon on 28th February 2019 11:20 pm




    A former teacher of mine , Jimmy Gordon , started Radio Clyde in `71 ?




    His mother was my primary teacher






    Your idea has me thinking what role certain posters would fulfill on the Celtic radio show and has me chuckling away.



  8. MACJAY1



    Don’t know about that lol.


    Just read Phil Mac’s blog there and apparently the moonlighter


    would have gutted our whole back room staff out if he had his


    way, but fortunately Damian and big John told him where to go .


    What an act of bitterness if true.


    H.H Mick

  9. Silver City 1888 on

    Sectarianism (sic) isn’t increasing again in Scotland. It’s increasing in sections of the Celtic support. It never went away in the fans of other clubs. The wider Scottish populace are predisposed to not noticing anti Catholic bigotry. It is common. It is casual. It doesn’t touch them so why would they notice? Mention the IRA or call a member of a club with an orange strip an Orange anything and there is outrage. Regardless of this double standard, sectarian songs have no part in a modern Celtic. Hate doesn’t promote Republicaism, Catholicism or Celtic. Win good.

  10. MELBOURNE MICK on 28TH FEBRUARY 2019 11:31 PM



    Just read Phil Mac’s blog there and apparently the moonlighter would have gutted our whole back room staff out if he had his way, but fortunately Damian and big John told him where to go . What an act of bitterness if true.



    *and some posters are still sticking up for him and blaming PL. As the song goes “There Are None So Blind As Those That Will Not See”

  11. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on




    The whole business with Brendan is so sad.


    Is it possible he was unaware of the reaction of Tims everywhere ?


    He just didn`t give a damn about loyalty .


    The absolute antithesis of what most of us feel is the essence of being a Tim.



    Although that opinion varies .



  12. What is the Stars on



    As you know I defend Lawwell a lot on here.


    But I must admit to feeling a bit uneasy with all the Rodgers bashing.


    Ok he deserves a lot of it.And I have enjoyed it…but last Sunday he was a hero.


    He remains a good coach,he won 7 straight trophies.


    I would rather we forgot about him than bad mouth him.


    Of course I wont practice what I preach.

  13. Asupporterwhogotlucky on

    macjay1 for Neil Lennon



    Mrs Gordon was a fantastic teacher.



    I also remember the very early birth of Radio Clyde, when it was obvious they had no large collection of music, and they used to say “if you want a certain record played, send in your record and we’ll play it”.



    The live shows Tiger Tim etc, were also prone to several funny phone-in mishaps (as they were live) i recall TT asking a caller if he liked Abba, and the caller said “Aye ahd gee that blonde yin …”







  14. WITS



    Yes he was a hero but would we have thought the same if we


    knew then what we know now?


    H.H Mick

  15. JIMTHETI53


    Sensible people like Auldheid and BRTH not whats needed on Celtic radio in the wee small hours.


    Everybody would be lulled to sleep with their reason and dulcet tones.


    We need rebel rousers like CANAMALAR and AWE NAW in those hours.

  16. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on




    I remember hearing about the request for ” records “.



    T.TIM :-)



    Tom Ferrie I used to see at Celtic Park.


    Told me about his quiz questions to the listening punters……



    Q. On what ship did the Mutiny on the Bounty take place ?


    A . Eh……………Was it the Spanish Armada ?



    Jimmy taught me Latin.


    Not an easy gig. Caesar`s Gallic wars.


    Not totally riveting.

  17. From bbc coverage of the press conference introducing Lenny and Kennedy…



    Celtic assistant manager John Kennedy was asked about whether he had the chance to go with Brendan Rodgers to Leicester City but played down such a suggestion.



    More from Kennedy




    Celtic assistant manager John Kennedy: “When Brendan was leaving, he asked me to be prepared to take the team and see where it went from there.




    “It quickly evolved to the situation I’m sitting in now where Neil has asked me to be his assistant manager and I’m delighted just to do that.




    “We’re in a crucial moment – timing wise it was difficult for people to understand and get their heads around. But behind that, there’s a lot of stability in the club.




    “That’s why Neil will come in and do a terrific job because of the support he will have behind him





    Not a popular opinion to hold on here right now but that’s fine by me.


    Some posters blind or otherwise seem to be in a rush to assume the worst of the villain of the hour.



    Difficult to know exactly what went on prior to Brendan leaving but read what Kennedy says, seems to be at odds to the rumour that he was asked to go to Leicester.

  18. Fan-A-Tic, They might be a bit contentious, how’s about Bernadette Devlin and Paisley’s son giving us the low down on football in the North?

  19. Melbourne Mick on




    Caeser’s Gallic wars.


    Was that when Big Billy and the Lions played St Etienn 8-))



    O.k ghuys nice chattin, Celtic top is on and out to hunt a happy hun.


    H.H Mick

  20. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    DBHOY on 1ST MARCH 2019 12:02 AM



    ” Some posters blind or otherwise seem to be in a rush to assume the worst of the villain of the hour. ”



    No blindness or assumption required.


    The damn cheek of Brendan .



    ” I`m off , John . Maybe you might fancy taking over . In the meantime .”

  21. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    MELBOURNE MICK on 1ST MARCH 2019 12:10 AM



    Billy was always a pleasure.



    Caesar wisnae.



    Enjoy your day .


    Watch out for the Matildas. Sam Kerr . Magic wee player.

  22. Melbourne Mick on




    Just caught your post before i went.


    I just ask myself ” would a real Celtic man like the late great


    Tommy Burns do to us what the moonlighter done ”


    Nae chance.


    H.H Mick

  23. Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan on

    fan-a-tic on 28th February 2019 11:55 pm






    Sensible people like Auldheid and BRTH not whats needed on Celtic radio in the wee small hours.



    Everybody would be lulled to sleep with their reason and dulcet tones.



    We need rebel rousers like CANAMALAR and AWE NAW in those hours.





    Can I just say thanks for calling me sensible …….

  24. Mick



    I can’t disagree with that.



    It’s the vitriolic nature of abuse, stoked by unsubstantiated rumours online that’s being thrown at him that leaves a bad taste for me, that’s what I’ve got an issue with.




  25. He is dead to us. Let’s move on.


    God bless Lenny for stepping in..he is a legend.


    Songs debate.


    Let’s go to a party ..be rude talk about stuff you shouldn’t …make yourself unpopular.


    Now I am first generation Glasgow Irish ..half from norn iron


    I understand the armed struggle . I disagree I am a bit John Hume ..good Friday is sunningdale for slow learner’s.


    If I went to a party I want to be popular.


    Club open to all.


    I don’t want to make people I like be uncomfortable..they don’t like ira songs..maybe one of their family was killed by them.


    There are more than enough good Irish songs that don’t upset our neighbours.


    The old boast ..your kids will be Celtic fans…not if some of our existing fans make it hard for them to love us.


    What about some of the greatest Celts ever


    Jock Danny king Kenny and broony..are you supporting them.



    Sing Grace good Protestant men to continue our irishnees.bit remember I always want Danny to feel comfortable..he is us ..he is greater than all of us..this is a rant.


    Think lads what you do and whom it affects

  26. Melbournemick here its warm down your way this weekend, I will be in Melbourne for work two weeks today.



    talking about rumours.


    I was told on good authority that John kennedy was PL’s man, was made clear to him at 1st that Pl would give him a back room role when he got injured and that he was to be PL eyes and ears on training ground



    makes sense as we all wondered what he done as he was not the defensive coach




    I was told by same source that BR( know now as the snake0 knew this and kept him away from the inner sanctum, the snake kept him away from main training sessions .




    did not know what to take at the time with that info, but when I was getting my photo taking over the Celtic crest at reception at Celtic park at the same time as Celtic were training in Dubai, who walked down stairs but the bold Mr kennedy, it all feel into place.



    I do think that all rumors concerning the snake are coming from the office of peter lawell , he has a uncomfortable transfer window opening in 12 weeks time and needs a lot of smoke screens to keep that balance sheet health ( dembele money stays put)

  27. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    TIPPBHOY on 1ST MARCH 2019 1:46 AM



    I wouldn`t like to go to work and be serenaded with the Sash , the Billy Boys and Fenian blood.



    Is it just possible that Scottish referees get hissed off when they have to listen to our renditions ?


    At any other private venue , O.K.


    Sung them myself and will do so again.



    At the game , totally unhelpful and counter productive.


    NOT in the interests of Celtic.

  28. F.U.B.A.R.bhoy on

    It’s 3.20. and I’m having trouble sleeping. I keep hearing the words ‘I hope you die in your sleep Brendan Rodgers’ and its being sung by so-called Celtic supporters. I’m disgusted. Did we sing that when Kenny left? Or Jimmy? Or Henrik? Nah, its over for me. Our young supporters are worse than huns. oot.