Milan, the incredible Paul Murray, Tyneside No 1


I never like to hear Celtic fans talk about weaknesses in opponents like Milan. They may be weaker than they were a decade ago but Milan have never been weak. The one thing Celtic have in their favour is the element of surprise, despite last season’s epic achievements. Milan will have read the screaming headlines, ‘spine of the team sold’. They will know little about how effective Celtic can use the vast open spaces of the San Siro.

After defending resolutely against Barca, Celtic looked like a far better team against a less effective Juventus but we found the limit to our abilities. Juve exploited the gaps in defence left as we took the game to them. I would rather defend in numbers and take our chances on the break than try to go toe-to-toe in midfield.

The San Siro seems to bring the best out of Celtic. Jock Stein went there three times, drawing after 90 minutes on each occasion; losing once after extra time. Gordon Strachan’s team were also level after regulation time, losing only after extra time, and lost narrowly in a Champions League group stage game. Martin O’Neill’s Celtic came within three minutes of securing a draw before conceding twice late on.

There can be fewer European grounds on which Celtic have performed as well. Wednesday will require another almighty and intense effort but that is something Celtic are never lacking. Milan may not fear us, but they have reason to be worried.

I listened to former Rangers director Paul Murray on BBC Radio Scotland over the weekend. I know books have been written on the downfall of that club but I could write one on his own contribution. As a non-executive director, Murray’s job was to be the eyes and ears of other shareholders, to ensure the business of the club was in order and carried out properly. He was in a position to ask awkward questions, in fact, it was his job to ask awkward questions and to ensure threats to the club were uncovered and addressed.

In this instance he failed absolutely. Despite this, he trumpeted the 50% decline in the club’s debt during his tenure as a badge of honour, he told us his namesake, Sir David, was exclusively responsible for the sale to Craig Whyte and for the consequences of the EBT debacle. We were informed that Rangers won their EBT case, despite the fact that during the First Tier Tribunal the club accepted they operated an illegal tax scheme for five players, and the remaining issues are a matter of appeal.

Most bizarrely of all he rejected Lord Nimmo Smith’s findings on the conduct of his board before telling us he is absolutely certain he would be judged fit and proper to be a director of a football club. No remorse, not even a hint of self awareness.

Well done to the Tyneside No. 1 Celtic Supporters’ Club who walked from Newcastle to Celtic Park in aid of 1254125 and the Sam Bradley Care Fund. You can support their magnificent effort here.

The new issue of CQN Magazine is out! Click here for a proper read (don’t try to read the graphic below). It’s another great issue, thanks to all who helped.
[calameo code=000390171853d2bfc4f69 lang=en page=1 hidelinks=1 width=100% height=500]

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  1. Forster


    Lustig Van Dijk Efe Mulgrew


    Mathews broony Ledley Sami







    Jamesie having a fitness test….




  2. Vinibhoy - Supporting Wee Oscar + Mackenzie on




    That’s exactly how I would line up. With Commons dropping in to make it a 5 in midfield.


    Bring Derk on if we need to go for it.

  3. Can Football Supporters Challenge Decisions of Football Bodies?



    This is indeed a very difficult question and its answer requires consideration of several different issues. Such issues give rise to a number of complicated legal considerations that concern the standing of the complainant to sue and the legal basis of the complaint.



    As the Juventus Supporters case demonstrates [Case T-273/09 Associazione Giulemanidallajuve Order of 19 March 2012], the association and/or link of fans with a particular football club, would not be enough to secure successful pleadings before the European Commission. Those complaining of the sanctions imposed on a club by a football association, must ensure that the legal basis of the complaint is appropriate and that they have the legal standing to sue.



    In the Juventus Supporters matter, an association of Juventus Supporters filed a complaint against the Italian authorities, for the sanctions imposed on Juventus, as a result of the Italian club’s involvement in match fixing allegations in Italy. Juventus FC were subsequently found guilty of such allegations and received, under the circumstances, severe penalties.





    European Commission


    Juventus Supporters filed the complaint before the European Commission and the legal basis of the complaint focused on competition law. The association of supporters alleged that the Italian sporting authorities breached Articles 101 and 102, by imposing sanctions that included a fine, relegation from the Italian premier division and a European ban from competitions.



    The European Commission rejected the complaint on the grounds that the association of supporters did not have a standing to sue and that the matter ‘lacked a Community interest.’ The Commission explained that with regards to the legal standing of the association of supporters, such standing did not exist, as the association of supporters did not act on behalf of Juventus FC, nor was there any confirmed and official representation. In relation to the ‘Community interest’ argument, the Commission argued that the imposition of sanctions by the Italian sporting authortities did not affect trade between member states, which would have been the pre-requisite for a successful argument on behalf of the association of supporters.



    The outcome of this complaint demonstrates the difficulty in succesfully pleading a case before the European Commission and/or the European Court of Justice, particularly if the legal basis of the complaint lacks merits. We are not convinced that a similar case in the future cannot be succesful, at least, if it could be pleaded under different headings and legal arguments. We are of the view that if football supporters can demonstrate prejudice of economic and other interests against them, or if the shareholders of the club [particularly minority shareholders] are able to establish such prejudice, the outcome of a similar complaint may be different.



    We conclude, therefore, that those advising football supporters, must ensure that the legal basis of the case has merits and that the rights that have been violated, deserve protection under European Law. The European Court of Justice has repeatedly stated, in the past, that rules of sporting governing bodies that affect European competition law, could be outlawed if such competition laws have been violated.



    It remains to be seen, whether a similar case could be submitted before the European Court of Justice and, this time, whether it could be argued with the appropriate and correct legal basis.



    Dr. Gregory Ioannidis

  4. Two key facts for Wednesday


    1) Milan’s vulnerability is at the back, but they will only be vulnerable there if they are pressed


    2) Of our attacking players, the one with the best defensive qualities/appetite is Sami



    Therefore – if Matthews is fit, we can go 4-4-2 and still have enough defensive cover if we go




    Lustig Virgil Efe Izzy


    Matthews Broonie Commons Sami


    Stokes Pukki

  5. embramike walking with wee oscar on

    bournesouprecipe @ 16:24 on 16 September, 2013



    Do Sevco not have to go through the Scottish Cup qualifiers before they get a chance at the big teams?






    2nd round was drawn today. Sevco join in round 3 and the top 16 ‘big’ teams in round 4.

  6. Kojo – As you have said many times before, Sammi is not an out and out striker. Horses for courses and all that. Also, Mathews is inexperienced in midfield and should not be played there. I prefer him at RB.



    I would go with:





    Mathews Virgil Ambrose Izzy


    Commons Brown Ledley Charlie Sammi


    Stokes (or Pukki)



    Not really expecting anything from this game, but a point would be fantastic.

  7. !!bada bing!!



    16:28 on 16 September, 2013


    hen1rik-the charade is unfolding,but no lapdog will touch it,the Gang’s continuing intimidation will see to that.Alex Thompson might be the only one brave enough.



    Tbh mate Alex has been quiet of late so no doubt he has been silenced.

  8. Vinibhoy






    Nice tae chat.



    Indeed.. Ye are so Right..



    Mulgrew,if he was moved tae the Left Back position.. at the Expense o’ Izzy being Bumped tae the Bench..







    as ye say.. We could Hiv oor Lemonade and Cottage Pie.. as Weel… (Whit?..ed)



    Howevahhhhhhh. and ye jis Knew THAT.. wis, comin’!



    Ah am a staunch supporter of Izzy…as oor Left Back.. Ah like the lad..



    His Crossing intae the Boax,is Not very good..of course.. but..



    In this Particular Game.. Ah do not think that we shall be making too many sorties..into oor Opponent’s Side of the Park,anyway.



    Ah am still Sticking tae Ma Ain TeamSelection.. and Ah wull dae jis that.. which means,among ither things.. There Wull Be no Appearance Money fur Stokesie..



    Ah am very satisfied With The Team Which Ah hiv Selected.



    and Ah wull stand pat with it..



    Until, Neil,of course…. comes along..



    And Messes it Up!


    and. Ye Jist KNOW .. that He wull Dae.. Jist THAT!










  9. ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::Forster::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



















    dots courtesy of up_over

  10. Green Lantern (((((0))))) on

    Buenas Tardes hermanos. Anyone know of bars in Denia likely to show the match on Wednesday.



    All suggestions greatly appreciated.

  11. It’s amazing how many time Sammy fails up front on his own yet fans still post line ups with him up front on his own. You’ll be giving Lenny ideas, please stop :o)

  12. thomthethim for Oscar OK on






    I believe that a club’s shareholders have the right to take a case to the European Court, if they feel that laws of the game have been broken, which impact on the investment they have made in a club.



    I also believe that this should be done outwith the club and should not involve shareholders who have connections to the club, via directorships or employment, etc.



    This would avoid UEFA imposing sanctions against the club, in breach of their own rules.

  13. hen1rik


    16:38 on


    16 September, 2013



    His primary role with C4 is in foreign affairs, and he’s been covering Syria. He’s not exactly been silenced.

  14. acgr@hotmail.co.uk - Only 39 free Zadok The Priest ringtones left to give away - Get them while stocks last :_)) on

    Rod Stewart tickets x 2 for Mon 30th at the Glasgow Hydro.



    Face value plus booking charge.



    If anyone is interested email me at acgr@hotmail.co.uk





  15. TSOAL / Bada



    Quite simply he was on the best horse in the race but decided to run up a wall of horses …twice. With another jockey it would have won 3 lengths going away. Hey ho.

  16. Mncelt






    Ah consider you the Doyen,oan Here..



    The Doyen?



    Yep.. The Doyen Awe that is Tae be Known and Awe that is NOT Known..



    aboot. How tae Read a Game of Fitba’..as she is played.



    Ah value your Knowledge of the Beautiful Game.. even Higher than .. Nutsie’s( That’s no saying Much. ed)



    But it is.. Nutsie,is Never Wrang aboot well..Anything.. of course, if Ye dinna Coont his sure Fire Tip oan that.. Fireless Match Company.


    whose Product… didnae live up tae it’s reputation of being the Answer tae Awe those Flaming Forest Fires..



    Anyway, as Ah wiz No Sayin’..



    Sure, Sammi,is No Striker, Per Se..



    He is whit ye call may call..



    A Striker, who is….No Per Se.!



    but, like Ah hiv said.. He must Play in this Game.. and



    The only way Ah kin fit him in..is tae pit him doon in the TeamSheet.. as oor Stand Alone Striker.



    Ah am quite content , tae go intae this Game



    WITHOOT a STRIKER, of Course..



    As Ah wid Set oot Ma TeamTactics…



    Based oan the Tried and True..



    “Come and Get Me, Ye Dirty Rats.. fur Ah am No Mug enuff tae


    Stand Toe tae Toe wit You”






    Still, Laughin’

  17. Twists and Turns



    Allowed his horse to get blocked. Aw well still ahead fae R Tart. He has another ride at 5.30. E/W?

  18. From LawTop20



    Fans in Scotland have come to terms with the argument that the limited liability concept is open to abuse. That much is established.



    The stripping of titles is a delicate discretionary matter. But delicacy cannot be chosen over transparency, equality and fair play.

  19. Oscar positive thoughts unionbearBhind on

    twists n turns



    Go Go Green, unlucky in running, was pulling double but couldn’t get a run, one for notebook




  20. The Battered Bunnet on




















    Dots courtesy of BSR

  21. From LawTop20



    The ‘same club’ argument could potentially extend liability and with regards to titles. But it is a national matter for those in charge.