Malmo vulnerabilities and likely game-plan


Since winning at top of the table Gothenburg on 12 April, Malmo have played 9 away games. They beat Lithuanians, Zalgiris, their first Champions League opponents and won at 8th placed Gelfe, but they could only manage draws away to 13th Falkenberg, 15th, Orebro and 16th (bottom) Atvidaberg.

They lost away to 8th placed Gelfe, 11th placed Kalmar, and Salzburg in the previous Champions League qualifying round. They think they can perform miracles at home, but confidence and form on the road is at rock bottom. One away win in over four months of domestic football is nothing short of a crisis for the defending champions – and they play through the summer in Sweden.

Not only that, but they are without two suspended players on Wednesday. Midfielder, Enoch Kofi was ordered off against Salzburg but Malmo’s biggest worry is the suspension to talismanic striker, Markus Rosenberg.

Rosenberg, 32, re-joined Malmo last year after a career which took him to Ajax, Werder Bremen, Racing Santander and West Brom. He’s scored in each of his last three outings, including one against Salzburg and one against Gothenburg.  It’s no understatement to say there is real anxiety at his absence.  Rosenberg’s form has masked a fragility which only a month ago brought innuendo from the coach, Age Hareide, and chairman, Hakan Jeppsson.  The latter claiming the total value of the team was less than its constituent parts, with Hareide making oblique comments about where his players’ thoughts lie.

The more I learn about them, Malmo sound like they could crack under some sustained Celtic Park pressure.

They know lots about Celtic and, with form and suspensions, they will come to mix it physically and plan to break with pace in the hope of snatching a goal. Such is the difference in their home and away form (the have won their last four home games, scoring 10 and conceding only once), a two goal defeat tomorrow night would be viewed with encouragement in Sweden.

Malmo are aware of Celtic’s threat in the air, specifically from set-pieces.  They will deploy three central defenders in a back five, in an attempt to subvert the way Qarabag and Inverness were overcome at Celtic Park recently.  One of the central defenders is certain to be Kari Arnason, 32, who left Aberdeen after a single season three years ago, on a free to then-League Two Rotherham.

This, together with a desire to break with pace, will be the essence of their game plan.  They expect Nadir Ciftci to lead the line.  If he does, the biggest part of his evening may be to occupy a clutch of defenders, creating space for others to exploit.

Kalmar have won only twice since beating Malmo in May.  Jo Inge Berget opened the scoring for Malmo in the 11th minute, but the champions collapsed late on, under pressure from Kalmar and their 7,800 fans.

We’ve faced Swedish champions twice in the last four years.  Kris Commons scored the first goal in each of the ties.  The script is written, Celtic.

Tomorrow we’ll talk about Hareide’s belief that the threat from Celtic comes mostly from the stands, not from the players……..

You’ll have noticed it’s back to school week.  There will be a collection of old/used backpacks and school bags for Mary’s Meals to take to Malawi, outside Celtic Park, before the St Johnstone game on 29 August.  If you have any lying around, hold onto them and bring them to the game, I’ll remind you closer to the time.

We have another bumblebee top to give away, courtesy of Magners.  Competition will start and end tomorrow, so look out for it!

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    Shocking stuff,mate. I hope the b…..s who did it are well-pleased. And well seen-to once they get caught.



    Strange not to read about it in the rags,eh? I understand that is the usual for desecration/damage to an RC church.

  2. BadaBing



    Congratulations on your NEBOSH Results



    I done mine a couple of years back and know how hard you need to work for it


    You should go and try and get the diploma



    I was too old to push myself



    I was coming up for retirement age and unwilling to try for it




    Hail Hail




  3. RobertTressell on 19th August 2015 11:29 am



    I’ve just watched the highlights. They actually celebrate at the NW Lower corner, so the opposite corner which is in the photo is the away section. Which was empty.


    I think we all owe a debt of gratitude to MR PASTRY for revealing the fiendish plans of those evil fifth-columnists,The Celtic Supporters Trust.



    It is only thanks to fearless and tireless effort by him and those like him that disaster has been averted. Obviously with their plans revealed,the CST will be forced to call off their plans which would inevitably have destroyed our club within days.



    We are not worthy of him.




    No you will not read nor hear of this in the press


    You only hear about the Ibrox bus front page news


    Hail Hail




  6. Good morning all!





    Just logged for some information as I am sure some of you will know. Have been trying to phone Celtic Park for this and most of you will know what that experience can be like.




    Is the Kerrydale lounge open to ordinary season ticket holders this evening?

  7. embramike says "the Huns are Deid" on

    Paul Brennan ‏@CQN 1h1 hour ago





    CelticTransferTalk ‏@CelticTT 2h2 hours ago





    Officials from @SouthamptonFC have traveled to Glasgow for talks with Peter Lawwell over centre half @VirgilvDijk #CTT



    Interesting … but tonight – any win with a clean sheet will do – COYBIG

  8. BMCUW 11.38



    one should point out to it that there would be no Celtic today if it were not for the actions of minority matter how much corporate branding there is of Celtic,the name belongs to the fans.It is ours.


    The importance of democracy within a large PLc is vital,and it must extend to minority interests as in the case of The Celtic Trust proposal on the living wage or Resolution12.


    i hope our board backs both resolutions,leaving none of them parked.




  9. The Croation signing does not make sense – won’t he be cup tied for the Champions League having already played for Zagreb?

  10. Just been to the Doctor, he has diagnosed that l have viral bronchitis, take paracetamol and linctus, OK says l, will that mix with Miller and Magners Doctor said l don’t recommend that, so told him l would start tomorrow as l was going to see the Famous Glasgow Celtic tonight,he just shook his head and smiled

  11. Hunderbirds are Gone on

    Contrary to the general opinion on here, I think Nah Dear Shift Key will start tonight.


    And really contrary to the general opinion on here I think he will score.



    The previous 2 statements I THINK. What I KNOW is that he will have a better chance with everyone’s patience and support. Griffster to come on and score too.



    NahDearShiftKey£19MillionProfit CSC

  12. Italian msm reporting that Pedro is joining Chelsea for €30 million.











    Have you started early on MALORBHOY’s Magners and Miller?



    I so hope you are right,of course.




  14. embramike says "the Huns are Deid" on

    OVERSEASBHOY on 19TH AUGUST 2015 11:58 AM


    The Croation signing does not make sense – won’t he be cup tied for the Champions League having already played for Zagreb?



    UEFA regulations allow players involved upto and including Play Offs to play for another team in the group stages



    42.07 As a rule, a player may not play in a UEFA club competition (i.e. UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League, but not UEFA Super Cup) for more than one club in the course of the same season. Exceptionally, however, a player who has been fielded in the first, second, third qualifying round or the play-offs of the UEFA Champions League or UEFA Europa League is entitled to play in the UEFA Champions League or UEFA Europa League for another club as from the group stage.

  15. Malorbhoy



    good to hear your going to the game,sounds bad viral bronchitis etc,,am hoping security dont check me for’a bottle’ tonight i dont know if i could do without my Benylin!! :-)


    hope it gets better soon




  16. Thanks for that. What about Scott Allan – is he ok after having pllayed in Europes other premier comp for Hibs!

  17. Afternoon off, and in an anticipatery mood as I head home to get organized for CP tonight.



    Imo, Charlie must start tonight – his versatility will be needed, as I believe the game could change dramatically, depending on who scores first.



    Cifti WILL start- hope Kris does also.



    Hopeful, not confident – how can we be otherwise?



    Hail Hail for a memorable winning night.

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