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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  1. Hebcelt: I very rarely post on here anymore, so I’m not sure what you mean about learning from mistakes.



    I think Armstrong is a reasonable SPL player but thats about it. He now way warranted the MOTM on Wednesday…Brown was absolutely immense and deserved it.


    Just watch SA over the next few games and see how often he abandons his position. You might change your mind on him.



    My opinions are just that and anyone is entitled to think differently.



    Anyway, all the best to you and hopefully we will be celebrating an Armstrong hat trick by the end of the game tomorrow :)



    Hail Hail

  2. Thomththim



    Good story and reflections on TC



    I remember he subsequently became a bit of a cult hero after all the early stuff and the Jungle regularly chanted “TC”



    A good player, and a great club servant….. not Lions class but there’s a few in that category!

  3. Dublinbhoy…



    Interesting re Stuart Armstrong.



    It’s a pity he is having to play out wide. I don’t think that’s where he wants to be!



    We do seem to specialise in wide midfielders who don’t want to be wide midfielders!



    Equally it seems always our ‘wide’ players drift inside, either because they don’t appreciate how to position themselves or (as seems more likely, however bizarre it sounds) they have all been following the coaches instructions!!!



    Now as far as Stuart himself is concerned I am a huge fan of him as a footballer. Athletic, intelligent, aware and alert. The epitome of a modern player.



    He has only been with us a few months and as time goues on I’m sure he will make his mark.



    If he is not tempted to move on….a future Celtic captain.



    Just my assessment which is not infallible lol




  4. Pedro needs to go into his office and shred Derk’s contract, and tell him his services are no longer required.




  5. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Nye Bevans. We should all feel disturbed by what has gone on and as equally important in my book is the cover up.The men and women involved were supposed to lead the congregation in how to lead there lives in order for the congregation to gain eternal life. Now many of them were committing horrific sexual assaults against weaker members of the Church while preaching on how to lead a holy life.Now if they truly repent they like anyone else deserve forgiveness but they should no longer hold the trusted position of priest or bishop or nun etc. I believe if there is no follow up from todays report the apology will be a hollow token.

  6. BVCeltic Clique????


    Who are you? Been in three times in the afternoon and not met any of you till today!


    Been told that you only appear on Celtic match days and the odd weekends.


    Serious drinkers or just journeymen??


    Thank god I met the bold Richie today. who made it all worthwhile, otherwise i would have


    decided to giive the BV a massive bodyswerve!




    Kilbowie Kelt. Haven’t seen you posting for a while, Maurice.


    I know you don’t agree with a lot of what is now the dross on CQN but just let us know that you are OK.



    Hail! Hail!




  7. “He now way warranted the MOTM on Wednesday…Brown was absolutely immense and deserved it”








  8. Dublinbhoy-as Justafan and a few more have posted ,Stuart is playing too wide,from a Bhoy who is at CP,Armstrong is unplayable at Lennoxtown.Play him in 1 ,centre mid or behind the striker,he will be a snip for £2 mil IMO.HH

  9. glendalystonsils on

    TALLYBHOY on 18TH AUGUST 2015 7:44 PM


    Pedro needs to go into his office and shred Derk’s contract, and tell him his services are no longer required.



    Would that be the services we haven’t had because he’s never fit?



    I read before Derk kicked a ball for us that he was coming to us with a very poor fitness record. Now,I’m not a highly paid football scout, I’m just a guy sittin’ in the hoose chattin about Celtic on my laptop,but it sure as heck would have put me off signing him.







    – See more at:

  10. 67 European Cup Winners on

    Not sure if its deliberate or just how it is !!


    Since RD arrival we have bought GMS SA DB SA and the keeper who’s name escapes me – also can’t remember if he bought anyone when he first arrived ?? All good tried and tested first team players BUT none we will sell for £10 million


    Previously we got Forster Wanyama Hooper even Virgil But to get those diamonds we also bought Derek B Stephan S Jo Berget and a host of other not very good players


    So has RD decided to play safe or is he a better judge if a player. ??


    67 ECW

  11. Nye Bevans' rebel soldier on

    JFH……….once again I agree,I find it a very difficult subject


    but the church must cleanse itself.

  12. Bada Bing





    Lots of work for you out here?.NEBOSH ,that means(Never Ever Be On aSite Here).lol.


    I will tell Mark your qualified


    Good luck.HH

  13. glendalystonsils on

    I don’t think Ronny will deviate from his habit of starting Ciftci in European games tomorrow. It’ll be interesting to see what he does domestically when Ciftci has served the remaining two games of his ban.

  14. SIPSINI on 18TH AUGUST 2015 7:32 PM


    Not tomorrow mate. Coatbridge with my Mhates, a bite to eat and a few Guinness before heading in.


    Keep the Faith!


    Hail Hail!

  15. Still feeling strangely confident that our game against Malmo is a good match up for us.



    Ronny’s starting Euro 11 usually picks itself this year with GMS, SJ and SA backing up Ciftci.



    I have a wee notion that Leigh might get the nod this time but I expect James Forrest to be kept in reserve until their defence tires a bit after an hour.



    Whatever we do, the tie is unlikely to be over after 90 minutes and we need to keep our important guys (Gordon, VVD, Izzy and Broony) fit until we achieve qualification.



    We will need to rest and rotate a few for the United game at the weekend.

  16. Glendaly,



    Interesting indeed.



    And a fairer time to judge him too Imo.




  17. *AGM Living Wage Resolution*



    Fellow Tims, the Celtic Trust will once again be aiming to put a resolution before the board of Celtic at this year’s AGM which will seek for the club to become an accredited Living Wage employer.



    To have the resolution put before the board we require a minimum of 100 shareholders to support it. Many of you have done this previously when Canamalar et al sought signatures for the Resolution 12 issue.



    To comply with the Companies Act all signatures must be actual and not electronic.



    So what can you do?



    Well, if you’d like to see Celtic become an accredited Living Wage employer then mail me at and I’ll send you a copy of the form.



    Support the founding principles of our club.

  18. glendalystonsils on




    Agreed, it will be easier to judge Ciftci with a run of games in the SPFL. Apart from anything else he will be fitter and more match sharp.

  19. Justafan, Bada Bing



    I think the captain needs to be tough bugger and i do not see that with SA…he may develop that side of himself but at the moment he is Mr Nice Guy.



    SA may be fantastic in the hole behind the strikers but I do not see Ronny dropping Johansen who to me fits that role.



    I know this will annoy the hell out of some on here but to me the best player in the position that SA fills is Anthony Stokes but Anto is not a Ronny signing so has been frozen out. And before anyone says it, no I don’t just think that because he is a fellow Dub!



    Hail Hail

  20. thomthethim for Oscar OK on










    He’s still at CP every home game working for Celtic hospitality.





    BSR/ tully57,



    Delighted to hear that from both of you.



    That was around the time when a mood of entitlement descended on a section of our support.


    The joy previous generations had was in being able to follow Celtic.



    It really was win, lose or draw pre Jock.



    Every success he gave us was won. It was not a right.



    Many of us today would do well to think on that. Harrumph!

  21. Dublinbhoy,



    Stokes isn’t being frozen out cos he’s not a ronny signing.



    Broony, lustig, vvd, johansen. Bitton etc are all first picks and are not ronny signings.

  22. Nye Bevans' rebel soldier on

    Goodnight Timland.



    Fell asleep in the chair,late night the morra so away


    tae bed.

  23. Bada Bing



    Congratulations on your NEBOSH been there so know what you went through, in the game so will keep my ear to the the ground

  24. glendalystonsils on

    Some goal by Memphis for Man U 2-1. Brugge playing the way I expect Malmo to play against us tomorrow……well organised in defence and dangerous on the break. It will be all about what we do though, and I expect us to be well up for it.

  25. Dallas Dallas where the heck is Dallas on

    Tommy Callaghan scored our third goal, and it was a cracker, in our 4 2 win versus Basel in the 1974 European Cup quarter final. I will be forever grateful to Tid for that goal.



    We went through 6 5 on aggregate before playing a horrible team in the semi final.



    The Basel game was the first time I had ever been in caught in a fans surge in the Rangers (IL) end. The crowd was given as 72,000 but there might have been a few more in that night.



    On a sad note from that game, George Connelly, broke his ankle , ruling him out of the 1974 world cup.

  26. Geordie Munro:



    I admit, I was being a little facetious with that comment but I do not believe Stokes will get another game unless SA gets injured or suspended. That will be shame as Anto is perfect for the left midfield position.



    Hail Hail

  27. Dublinbhoy….



    I will admit I was never a Stokes fan though to be fair he has generally exceeded my expectations.



    However his great inconsistency is really a poor reflection on his professionalism.



    He is or perhaps was the best at interplay with Izzy and in that regard we agree.



    But….that was then and this is now. His time at Celtic is over and I think that is fair. No harm to him at all but we’ve had his best and he won’t get better IMO.



    BTW I think this should also apply to Chaz Mulgrew.




  28. Hamiltontim on 18th August 2015 8:07 pm



    are you going to the game tomorrow?



    If yes and intend to get to the corner bring a form and I’ll sign mine there for you




  29. thomthethim for Oscar OK on




    My four who I thought would not thrive under Ronny, were, Sammi, stokes, Mulgrew and Commons.



    Nothing since has changed my mind.



    KC is still there until someone, possibly Allan, takes over.