Pairing up and testing, £17m running figure


The search to resolve our defensive problems this season stretch back before the departure of Virgil van Dijk in August. Dedryck Boyata and Efe Ambrose have struggled with form, which our big summer signing, Jozo Simunovic, has endured two lengthy injury lay-offs.

Defensive stats have been revolutionised since the January arrival of Erik Sviatchenk, who was voted the Danish Superliga’s Player of the Year last night. We have achieved six clean-sheets in his nine starts, losing only a solitary goal each game the defence was breached. It took 20 games to record six clean-sheets before the Dane arrived.

We are far from the finished article at the back. The clean-sheets mask perennial failures to defend corner kicks, which have recently resulted good chances, instead of goals conceded. But, progress has been clear. Jozo’s been out of the team since the week before Erik’s arrival.

One of the things we need between now and the end of the season is these two paired up and tested. You win things (and qualify for things) when you stop conceding goals.

I remember the days I’d pour over Oldco Rangers’ accounts for insights into the future and comparisons with our own business model. I’d a cursory look at The Rangers Football Club’s accounts this morning. There is little of comparative relevance for us, or indeed, probably for Newco’s short-term future, should they gain promotion this season.

The one area that offers comparison is the cost of running a football business in a stadium which occasionally caters for crowds of 50,000 or more. With first team wages (I assume this refers to professional players employed) stripped out, expenses during the paired-down Easdale-led season was just north of £17m.

This is a useful guide of what it costs to pay your rates, electricity , insurance and the million other bills when you need to occasionally cater for 50,000-ish crowds, although many costs, like police, will reflect a lower tariff due to the lack of actual footfall. We don’t get as clear a picture of this cost from Celtic, who don’t separate player wages from non-playing staff. My hunch is that Celtic’s paried-down figure will be a few million higher (the silver polish bill alone….).

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  1. weebobbycollins ( from ages ago last article )



    When values are sacrificed at the expense of business nothing resonates more with the everyday Celtic fan.



    Exceptional posters have written on these pages for nearly 12 years about this clash of culture at Celtic.



    A predicament that gets tested regularly but which is about to face it’s most sternest test, with New Club inception.



    SMSM has worked tirelessly and diligently in it’s motivational drive towards ‘Old Firm 2’.



    Lots won’t buy into it, but the Bankier’s and Lawell’s will still be in situ, bonus guaranteed.



    The Daily Record will run amok with anti Celtic dogma, whenever it suits.



    Plus ca change




  2. I’ve said all season that as soon as we get a settled platform at the back to build from we will win the league by a distance.



    We will always struggle up to Christmas with the amount and intensity of the games we have to play. Our support need to recognise this.

  3. You are posting comments too quickly. Slow down. on

    The defence has looked more settled with the inclusion of Erik although his lack of pace will catch us out against better quality opponents.



    I was disappointed with the manner in which Jozo got injured in Europe, just back from an ankle injury and took a couple of hits early in the game on the same ankle.




  4. No summer holiday pay at Sevco either. Good luck attracting players with those conditions.

  5. Another day passes,still not a word from Celtic FC on Res 12. Blogs like this are manna from heaven for them,outlets for fans to vent their spleen,no direct pressure on our Board in times of crisis. Meanwhile good men and women,working their arses off to get justice ,meanwhile,more crap about Sevco,talk about fiddling while Rome burns….

  6. Not sure a Svietchenko/Simunovic pairing is the answer, both are quite slow. I’d persevere with Boyata as Erik’s partner for the remainder of this season. He’s the quickest of our centre backs and if he can sort out his lapses in concentration (understandable from such an inexperienced player) they could form a good partnership.

  7. Svietchenko may not be gifted with lots of pace, but like John Clark who wasent the fastest player with us, he can read a game and is always in the right place at the right time, two moves ahead, same as Bobby Moore, players make up in other departments that you can’t train for, and that’s instinct and trusting yourself, Erik has that, as did the other two I mentioned, the guys that good, you don’t notice it.

  8. I like big Erik.



    He’s not without his faults, but he shows desire and if we have a midfield than can help defend, he’ll be an excellent signing.



    He’s also showed more drive and determination than Commons and Biton added together.



    Árd Macha

  9. BSR


    Mulgrew will be gone in the summer. He’ll keep his place beside Erik in short term due to his experience but longer term its two from Erik, Dedryck & Jozo.

  10. Mr Pastry,



    No need to undo any of the changes that Tory governments have made or are proposing to make?









    Also, who is giving “SNP lectures”? Not me, I asked a question.



    You are seeing nats under the bed everywhere!



    BTW, after our last conversation on Friday where you professed only partial knowledge of the Res 12 issue, winning captains has helpfully published an article explaining the current situation. He based it on Auldheid’s reply to you, when you had previously asked for guidance on Res 12. Auldheid replied to you well before our conversation. Perhaps you missed it, Here’s a li,nk to it, as a


    handy helper;




  11. The Battered Bunnet on

    what Bill Shankly might have said



    Ronny Deila didn’t break the mould, Molde broke him.

  12. An Erik and Jozo partnership will not work, especially with our way of playing.


    Didn’t we lose 2 goals at Pittodrie with Erik playing?


    I do like Erik, aggressive and positive, and a good football brain, very important the part between your ears, often overlooked.

  13. So we’re not having to go to the USA after all. Some great looking ties in there as well. I’d say that’s good work by our board.

  14. The Rangers supporters group The Blue Order is composed of ex-Celtic fans who have converted, having previously been known as Bhoy Division.



    Frank(ly Mr) Shankly

  15. beatbhoy on 22nd March 2016 11:53 am











    Don’t agree that a boycott of the semi-final is an admission of their (Sevco’s) significance.







    It is more an acknowledgement of the significance of The Big Lie being allowed to take precedence over honesty, fairness and sporting integrity, thus rendering the game in Scotland a farce.







    Who wants to pay to watch a farce, especially as we know now we were paying for years to watch a ‘sport’ in which we were being cheated on a massive year-on -year scale?







    And then,when the bill for that cheating arrives in the form of liquidation, the SFA/SPFL refuse to acknowledge it, anticipating that the browbeaten will eventually accept the whole ‘let’s move on’ agenda, as they reluctantly (or not, in some cases) suspend their powers of disbelief to allow themselves to attend.




    On the last para the latest from The Clumpany see above and here is brilliant.



    Good Afternoon.



    Here is my latest. All about lies and holding companies…






    Even the Holding Company was liquidated and MIH won the trophies that RFC say are theirs.



    Where logic might not their change minds ridicule may keep them stilled.

  16. CELTIC will take part in the prestigious International Champions Cup this summer, with games against Barcelona, Inter Milan and the current English Premier League leaders, Leicester City.



    It’s a sign of Celtic’s global appeal that they’ve been invited to compete in the tournament, alongside some of football’s biggest names.



    The Hoops will play host to Leicester City on Saturday, July 23, while seven days later, Celtic head to Dublin to take on Barcelona at the Aviva Stadium. And in the 50th anniversary season of Celtic’s 1967 European Cup triumph, it’s fitting that Celtic will take on Inter Milan. The game will take place on Saturday, August 13, with the venue to be confirmed.



    Celtic Chief Executive Peter Lawwell said: “We are delighted to be invited to take part in such a unique and prestigious international tournament and join together with the other great names in world football in what we know will be a fantastic sporting occasion.



    “Celtic is proud to enjoy its own global profile and we are sure our involvement with the biggest names in the game will only increase interest in the club on a global stage.



    “It is magnificent news that our supporters in Scotland and Ireland will be able to enjoy such exciting matches and we are sure our participation will be warmly welcomed by our fans who will look forward to Celtic meeting such a high calibre of opposition in Barcelona, Inter Milan and Leicester City.”



    This year’s International Champions Cup features some of the most successful clubs in the world, including many of the world’s top players. The 10 participating teams have won a total of total of 190 domestic league titles, 246 domestic cup titles and 36 UEFA Champions League titles.



    The 10 teams are: Celtic, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Liverpool, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain, Leicester City and Chelsea. Matches will be played in stadia throughout North America and Europe.



    The full list of matches which will be played in stadia throughout North America and Europe are:



    Saturday, July 23


    Celtic v Leicester City, Celtic Park, Glasgow, Scotland



    Sunday, July 24


    Paris Saint-Germain v Inter Milan, Autzen Stadium, Eugene, Oregon



    Wednesday, July 27


    Real Madrid v Paris Saint-Germain, Ohio Stadium, Columbus, Ohio


    Bayern Munich v AC Milan, Soldier Field, Chicago, Illinois


    Liverpool v Chelsea, Rose Bowl, Pasadena, California



    Saturday, July 30


    Celtic v Barcelona, Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Ireland


    Chelsea v Real Madrid, TBA, United States venue


    Bayern Munich v Inter Milan, Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina


    Liverpool v AC Milan, Levi’s Stadium; Santa Clara, California


    Paris Saint-Germain v Leicester City, Los Angeles, California. TBA venue



    Wednesday, August 3


    Barcelona v Leicester City, Friends Arena, Stockholm, Sweden


    Bayern Munich v Real Madrid, MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey


    Chelsea v AC Milan, U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, Minnesota



    Saturday, August 6


    Liverpool v Barcelona, TBA European venue



    Saturday, August 13


    Celtic v Inter Milan, TBA European venue



    Charlie Stillitano, Chairman of Relevent Sports, said: “This is the best roster of teams in ICC history and having them start their 2016/17 campaign playing against each other will be a treat for both fans and the players. We are continuing to set the gold standard for soccer in America and abroad and are excited for summer to start.”



    David Tyler, CEO of Relevant Sports, added: “The ICC has truly excelled in hosting the best matches featuring elite competition in new and iconic venues, but 2016 will be the pinnacle.”



    And Matt Higgins, CEO of RSE Ventures, said: “The 2016 International Champions Cup returns with multiple games across Europe and the United States. The ICC will continue to attract the top talent and teams in the world and we look forward to the future of the tournament both domestically and internationally.”



    Exclusive presale tickets for most games will be available beginning Tuesday, March 29, while general public will have access to tickets from Tuesday, April 5. Fans can sign up at http://www.internationalchampionscup.com for access to the presale. All venue-specific and other ticket information is available at http://www.internationalchampionscup.com



    Each team will play three matches and the club with the most points at the end of the tournament will be crowned champion. Each win in regulation time will result in three points and a tie will go straight to a shoot-out; the winning team in a shoot-out will receive two points and the losing team will receive one.

  17. An Teach Solais on



    Just realised that my attempt to screen-grab completed mandate did not work. So have copied it out and e-mailed to jjoe88@hotmail.co.uk. Hope this is OK.


    Been thinking of ways that non shareholders supporters can assist in having the corruption rectified.


    However, I want to thank all the proponents of Resolution 12 for their hard work in that regard.


    Too often people rush to moan but never get round to doing anything themselves. Hail, hail

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