McLeish, THE Grand Conspiracy. Transformational Celtic


Knowledge gaps in football don’t last forever.  We discussed this last year when reviewing the advantage Celtic earned over others by investing in the Japanese market.  On evidence from three of the four players we signed from Japan before this window, the quality recruited from there outweighs anything we have been able to acquire from European markets.

You, me and the recruitment bods at every Premiership club know this to be the case.  It is also true that Japanese clubs and scouts know there is an emerging market in Scotland.  If you had a player to move on, you would test the water here.

And so yesterday this particular sun rose for Hearts, who signed 21-year-old striker Yutaro Oda.  The undisclosed fee is likely to be well short of £1m for a player who has made only 26 starts, giving a return of 5 goals.  It should be noted Hearts had a Japanese loaner from Manchester City for season 2019-20.

Hearts fish in a different pool from Celtic.  This is effectively true of every Scottish club, including Newco, who will always lose a player to Celtic, if we are sufficiently motivated.  Still, any Scottish club that actually has money to spend on players would be mad not to learn from the lesson Celtic have very clearly taught them over the past 18 months.

This could be the last window we have an effective knowledge advantage for the Japanese market.  The real lesson from Celtic in recent times is that these gaps exist and that finding and exploiting them is transformational.

I cannot let this go without comment.  Former Rangers manager, Alex McLeish said “We’d never head down the conspiracy rabbit hole.” In response to Martin O’Neill’s unflattering comments about Scottish referees.

Those who earlier went down the conspiracy rabbit hole were able to uncover grand scale disguised renumeration during McLeish’ time as manager at Ibrox.  He often fielded entire teams with “improperly registered” players.  The conspiracy to hide second contracts extended to over 50 players and officials.  When uncovered, it led to Rangers liquidation.

As much as anyone involved in Scottish football over the last 100 years, McLeish knows the truths that lurk down conspiracy rabbit holes.  No wonder he doesn’t want to go there.  How refreshing it would be if any of these dozens of characters still peddling their thoughts to the media were asked to open up about THE Grand Conspiracy in Scottish football.

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  1. bigrailroadblues on

    Gentlemen start your engines….The mighty Glasgow Celtic are playing Saturday at 5.30. What time are our fellow overseas Tims watching the match?

  2. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Celtic Forever has done a nice job of pulling together a montage of VAR incidents.



    On Twitter and YouTube. Worth a look.



    Interestingly, and comments from others call this out, the piece misses three contentious decisions.



    Motherwell assault on Starfleet and Dundee United assault on Giakoumakis (both much worse than upgraded red card tackle on fat boy).



    Blatant handball in Sevco versus Hearts.



    No slight intended toward Celtic Forever but these three misses are indicative of the scale of the issue.



    Just ELEVEN matches into VAR’s life ?



    … we’ve already lost count !!!

  3. garygillespieshamstring on




    The SFA will be hammering us retrospectively for the “John Greg is a …. “ rewrite of “brown girl in the ring “ from the late 70s.


    Nine point deduction.

  4. @Ron B ..Catchin up…..Keep well sir…..As recent times have shown you are made of strong stuff.


    Enjoy your sunny break … And make new memories…











    Best wishes and prayers to you Sir!



    Hope your holiday is wonderful!



    Take care.

  6. Just googled it mate …yesterday……


    i feel 2023 is the big year to say goodbye to the 60’s legends……




    Just home from work and catching up on the news. Seeing Man City lost down south made me smile.



    Jeff Beck



    As a child, he sang in a church choir, and began playing guitar as a teenager, getting his first instrument after trying to dupe a music store in a hire-purchase scheme. “There was this guy, he wasn’t old enough to be my dad but he offered to be my guarantor. He said, ‘I’ll tell them I’m your stepfather’,” he told the New Statesman in 2016. “Within a month, they’d sussed out he was nothing to do with me whatsoever and they snatched the guitar back. My dad went along and explained that we couldn’t afford it – so they waived the rest of the payments and I got the guitar.”

  8. @Mick1888…


    Erz Mick….long time ..Ye managed your fitba skills behind that wheel yet??/


    Back in the day …..Season 05 06.. when big John stuck that winner up the minis..


    You …We…were all exstatic……..Whit happened mick?


    Get back on board good tim ….






  9. Aipple hard working man…… good on you .


    He came to Bham one year ..and that night he blew us all away…


    Played the guitar like a a piano..if you know what i mean….


    We thought we were guitarists……we left like beginners…..




    It’s a funny thing. Have always been “into my music” but I couldn’t name the last new band I discovered. I’ve enough in the back book to keep me happy. Am I getting old?

  11. ‘@Aipple…..Naw never old…….just lost lol..The back book is our memories..


    The new book ?/ my granddaughter says ..granda…..olivia….this .olivia that…


    and i listen…..Then i say wow this girl can sing……..and we boogie…


    Then i play lazy sunday afternoon ..and my ghirl is moving…..


    Not Too old and not Too young……….





  12. Mr “unsurpassed in their dignity” in their handling of contentious situations saying “we would never, ever scrutinise the integrity of the officials” has proven to be untrustworthy and unethical himself.



    After a successful playing career, where big Billy coveted him and put numerous offers in for him where he has allegedly said he would have signed for us he went into football management with Motherwell his first season saw him take them to second in the Premier Division behind naesurname’s ebt side, however, he failed to build on this success and the next two seasons were spent in relegation battles, he then did a midnight flit to take over at Easter Road, he was never welcomed back tae Fir Park for the manner in which he left and is despised there.



    He then took a struggling Hibbee side which was relegated in his first season and guided the Leith louts back to the Premier League at the first attempt by winning the First Division championship, they consolidated in their first season back in the top division, finishing mid-table and reaching the Scottish Cup semi-final, the following season they started very strongly, eventually they had to settle for third place and a Scottish Cup final appearance, this performance attracted the attention of bigger clubs, including West Ham United and Deidco, as I said his work at Easter Road had NOT gone unnoticed, and he was linked with several moves to England, before he was appointed as Deidco manager after being seen having lunch with bader while still Hibs boss, so another midnight flit took place



    He was an instant success at deidco, but as we all know all his success was ebt fueled and not as a result of his own talent and when their worsening financial state saw many of their top players leave plus MON tactfully finding him out, he was consequently put under pressure from fans after his poor signings and a record run of seven consecutive Old Firm derby losses to us.



    He did regain the title from our grasp with another group of ebts as well as the Hibbee team no showing up on the last day including their captain who was going to them on a bossie and never crossed the halfway line that afternoon and headed intae the season full of hope again spending other people’s money but suffered a series of poor results between September and November, this included a club record of 10 games without a win, however a good European run saw bader announcing his support for him in December and they went on a good course of results in December and January.



    That run of good results came to a sudden halt when they were defeated 3–0 by Scott Brown inspired Hibbees in the Scottish prompting protests outside hades against both mcurine and bader and it was announced that he would be standing down as manager at the end of that season



    As seems to be the norm in the land of the templars he immediately was given a position with the BBC and Setanta Sports until the following January when he took over as the national team manager from naesurname who had bailed out on them to return to hades succeeding the highly touted polly leguen, like he had done with Motherwell and Hibs he bailed out of that gig after only 10 games taking the position at Birmingham but only after he went on his jollies to the WC draw in South Africa, however just like at Easter Road, he was unable to save them from relegation.



    He did on the final day of the season take Brum back to the top flight, following their success during the 2009–10 season, he agreed a new three-year deal with the club in September 2010 and 5 months later led them to victory in the League Cup, however, a poor run of form followed the League Cup win and they were relegated to the Championship on the last day of that season the directors confirmed he would keep his job and would be expected to return the club to the Premier League at the first opportunity, again in true mcsleekit form he quit St Andrews on 12 June 2011 by email.



    5 days later Aston Villa appointed him as manager, aye 5 days after leaving their local rivals there was much controversy surrounding his appointment as Brum claimed he was still under contract and filed a complaint against Aston Villa to the Premier League while Villa claimed he was a free agent, Villa fans protested outside Villa Park and anti-mr integrity graffiti had to be removed from outside Villa’s training ground, he led Villa to 16th place in the Premier League, avoiding relegation by two points, and set an unwanted club record of only four home wins, his contract was terminated the day after the season ended, the reasons cited for his termination were the poor results and style of play used throughout his term as manager.



    18 months later he was appointed manager of Football League Championship club Nottingham Forest, 6 weeks later, after a 2–1 defeat to former club Birmingham City on his first return to St Andrew’s, he refused to commit his future to Nottingham Forest and claimed he was unhappy 3 days later he left the club by mutual consent.



    18 months after that he McLeish he was appointed manager of Belgian club Genk, it was reported the following March that he would leave Genk at the end of the Belgian Pro League season, as the club had failed to qualify for the Championship play-offs.



    Next up was Egyptian Premier League club Zamalek, after a series of poor performances he was sacked on 2 May with ten matches of the season remaining.



    Then on the following February he was reappointed Scotland manager but was sacked after only 14 months following a 3–0 defeat by Kazakhstan.



    A charlatan in the dugout and yet was allowed to take charge of the scottish freemason association sporting wing not once but twice, aye even after bailing out on them, unsurpassed dignity my chorus and verse.

  13. Jeezo trawling thru back catalogue…….some great posts as always..


    St Stivs..@H Lubo great link…..

  14. Aipple on new years eve..i was 70..boooo.


    Anyhoo my daughter gave me a superb night…..


    Also i was presented with two albums……After the gold rush…


    and They only come out out at night…..How well do they know their dad???


    every generation….x





  15. AIPPLE on 11TH JANUARY 2023 11:49 PM



    TONTINE TIM, Enjoyed that



    Thanks I enjoyed writing it as I always saw him as a phoney

  16. My friends in Celtic,



    Firstly and most importantly, best wishes to Ron Bacardi and Hebcelt.



    When we smash the CL in the group stages with our Japanese Bhoys pivotal, then that will be when peak value will be attained.



    There is absolutely no evidence that Mcinnes is a bigot. In fact there’s arguable evidence he knocked back the Greyskull gig due to his assistant not being invited.


    Mcinnes is a boring, poor and predictable manager, but bigot, I think not.



    Paul 67, in spite of many differences with Alex McLeish, it was a well known Celtic pub who helped him in his time of need employing admirable discretion.



    HH to all, the journey continues.

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