Picking the right (Celtic) players is a big part of Gordon’s job. National Famine Memorial Day shirt


Scotland returned to their Glorious Failure nation status last night after completing their final five games of the World Cup qualifiers with three wins and two draws, a decade high-water mark. Glorious Failure being a status well ahead of the recently-discarded Pathetic Failure nation status.

We can now compete with decent sides, like Slovenia, Slovakia and England, and win comfortably away from home against Lithuania, who we were unable to beat at Hampden one year ago yesterday.

Problem is, I have a niggling feeling that this recent success has more to do with Brendan Rodgers than anyone else. In delivering an Invincible season and two Champions League group stage qualifications with overwhelmingly Scottish players, Brendan has effectively said: “Gordon, check out the really good players you have here”.

It is not all Gordon Strachan’s fault that he didn’t pick any Celtic players in the 1-1 home draw with Lithuania, whereas he selected six Celts in the recent 0-3 away win. Scott Brown was temporarily retired from international football then, and Stuart Armstrong and Callum McGregor were struggling to get into the Celtic team. But the omission of Gordon, Tierney, Griffiths and Forrest for large parts of the early campaign, in retrospect, looks unforgivable.

The reason Scotland didn’t qualify for the World Cup has less to do with our genetics, than the fact that we didn’t select our best players for the home game against Lithuania (for example). The fact that Gordon didn’t pick so many Celtic players early in the campaign, as he did later, reflects the corresponding appreciation in Celtic players’ stock over the period. But picking the right players is a big part of the job. We have a relatively small pool of talent and the manager missed a lot of value.

For you and I there is a compensation. We will not have the stress of worrying about having to play Champions League qualifiers with up to a dozen players on World Cup duty. The bulk of the squad will go through a preseason routine designed for Celtic’s needs. The Scottish players will also not have to compete in a play-off round amid Champions League games against Bayern Munich and the final stages of the League Cup.

The rest of the country will have no compensation, only disappointment that they are unable to participate in a Celtic dividend.


Fancy yourself as a collector of Celtic memorabilia? James Forrest’s match-worn National Famine Memorial Day shirt is available for raffle later today. These shirts are go for incredible sums at auction, but this one is open to the wider community.

Oh!  And if you know your history, you will know what good you will do by participating.  Laters…………



A NEW CQN Podcast is out now featuring interviews with Celtic legends Bobby Lennox, John Fallon, Tommy Callaghan and Kenny Dalglish.

This week, ‘A Celtic State of Mind’ pays tribute to The Quality Street Gang.

In the second of a two-part series, Paul John Dykes interviews:

Bobby Lennox, John Fallon, Tommy Callaghan and Kenny Dalglish!

The discussion is all about one of the finest crops of youngsters ever to emerge from Celtic Park…

And we finally reveal just where that nickname came from.

Enjoy the new podcast…

The new Invincibles treble disc DVD is now available from CQN Bookstore HERE. It is quite simply unmissable. What a season that was!


Click Here for Comments >

About Author

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
  9. ...
  10. 12

  1. BMCUW



    Wasn’t arguing, just glad such a great player had a bit more to show in terms of major honours at the end of his career.



    Lubo would still have kept his balance and ball control on Lino!



    Dunno about Accies’ pitch, right enough.

  2. Anya can’t get a game for Derby, but picked before Forrest,McGregor, McGinn……..pundits couch awaits you Strachan

  3. normanstreet49 on

    Gordo’s comment about being too wee….


    What a ridiculous thing to say….


    Average height of the Lisbon Lions team anybody??


    Everyone a giant… in more ways than one.


    Just go now Gordo… quietly….. if that’s at all possible.

  4. As the father of two Sons, both over 6 feet 5 inches tall, I believe i have the answer to WGS and the SFA’s problem. 100% success rate so far.


    I will require that you all resign immediately after declaring Sevco to be a ‘new’ club, and all tainted titles are stripped.


    Send me your women. ;-)))


    I will make this sacrifice for my country.





    Small pool of talent?



    Mibbe WHS was right,in a way. We need a bigger pool of talent,not bigger players.



    And I bet he’d still find a ludicrous and cringeworthy excuse.



    Btw,the Scots race were once the tallest in Europe before years of slum-dwelling took their toll.



    WGS would have been in his element then. And his tactics might even have seemed revolutionary at the time.

  6. Strachan’s comments were lamentable.



    Why, I know loads of chaps who are vertically challenged but seem like nice, hard working people.



    Philbhoy (6′ 2″)





    Aye,exactly. We were both making the same point.



    I reckon another viewing of A Gift From God is in order.



    For no other reason than simple pleasure.



    And I’ll probably read the BRT&H article about his signing too.



    It would bring tears to a glass eye,that.

  8. thomthethim for Oscar OK on

    I accept the point re Lubo’s age, etc., but he didn’t have to play 90 minutes every week.




    The sight of him standing forlornly on the touchline, waiting to come on in the cup final, when Lovencraants(sp) stooped to win the cup, still rankles with me.




    MON has been four years or so with Ireland and has only relatively recently involved Houlihan, who, for me, is the only real football player in the squad.




    Aiden should be up there, but, again doesn’t feature as a first pic, although, I don’t think he imposes himself on a game the way Wes does.

  9. Right on the button there, Paul67. Part of me wanted WGS to pick the right players and give Scotland a proper chance to progress. The bigger part of me is relieved that our players can concentrate solely on Celtic now.



    By the old bye, I found it curious that there is a move to raise a statue in Glasgow to Nelson Mandela. Not that I am against it. Not at all. Only that there would seem to be a lot more antagonism to raising a memorial to an event that has had a profound effect on a very large proportion of Glasgow’s citizenry……

  10. mike in toronto on

    It is understandable that GSs comments on size would get the most attention, but I actually thought his other comment was more telling:



    “Nobody can tell me that, apart from one player, they are technically better than our players,” he said. “But, physically, we have a problem.”



    Sorry, not buying that. Admittedly, their number 7 was a standout, I thought they were technically better pretty much across the park.



    Just realized the Ireland game is on a channel to which I don’t subscribe. Oh well, updates on CQN it will be then.

  11. Best story of the weekend was the Linfield fans telling their Scottish brethern to GTF with their sectarian singing.Whod have thunk it?.Be intersesting to see if the annual bigotfest takes place next year in Norn Ireland.If the club really do want to break away from their horrific,sectarian past,this would be as good a time as any to lay down a marker.Could be further isolation,for the self styled,Most maligned group of people in Scotland.


    Sorry for the absence of inverted commas,but this Turkish keypad has changed the location once again.Takes an eternity to find where it puts things.Something like Mrs TB.

  12. South Of Tunis on

    Hey -Ho –



    ” I don’t know what I find more laughable,the fact that Celtic cannot find £500.000 from their biscuit tin to sign a proven talent like John Spencer or the fact that they spent £ 300,000 on one of Dr Jo’s old pals -the unknown Lubo Moravcik –Hugh Keevins .



    ” We shouldn’t underestimate this Czech team -any team featuring the fabulously skilled Lubo Moravcik absolutely has to be respected .”



    Italian Fitba’Pink on the day before Italy played Czechoslovakia in the 1990 World Cup.

  13. MON had success at Leicester in the same way he had at Celtic.Big strapping defenders,and big strapping forwards.Get it up to the big guys as soon as possible.Bobo,Valgaeren,Mjalby,Sutton,BBJ.With the right players it can bring success.Remember MON had Henrik to add that bit of magic.Not being able to buy in players with the International team,he has therefore to go with what he has.Not done too badly,but not the best to watch.


    Did not like when he refused to give Lubo more games.A waste of a fantastic talent,and cost us in games.


    Hope he does it tonight.

  14. South Of Tunis on

    MIKE IN TORONTO @ 12 54 .



    ” Their number 7 was a standout ”



    Didn’t see it but assume the Number 7 was Josip Ilicic .



    Fine player , great attacking midfield partnership with Javier Pastore at Palermo before moving to a good Fiorentina team . Now playing for a good Atalanta team.

  15. John Beattie , former Scotland rugby internationalist and now a broadcaster has spoken on a few occasions about the size issue with Scotland players and those from a bigger pool to choose from such as England. More specifically however he has spoken about the Southern Hemisphere sides with their better weather and therefore access to outdoor sporting activities and healthier lifestyle producing healthier and larger people. This in turn produces players with a better skill set.

  16. 50 shades of green on

    So is it a case of——–



    We R the wee people- ??????? .




    Nah, mind you its a catchy wee tune if your braindead.




    Trust wee Gordy to bring in sizematic problems to deflect from his team tactics and most have bought into it.





  17. I’m not sure it can all be blamed on a poor first half to the campaign. However you look at it, we were 45 minutes from a play off and either Gordon told them to sit back and invite them onto us or the players choked with the finishing line in sight. I think in the end they missed broonie badly



    Not being seeded in the play offs would have done for us anyway I reckon, a decent team would make mincemeat of our central defence

  18. !!BADA BING!! on 9TH OCTOBER 2017 12:21 PM


    Anya can’t get a game for Derby, but picked before Forrest,McGregor, McGinn….



    McArthur can’t get a game for a Palace team ŵho have made the worse start in EPL history, 8 defeats out of 8, no goals scored. In a must win game he starts ahead of McGregor and McGinn, 4 goals between them last week.


    Phillips can’t get a game for West Brom, has nightmare on Thursday v Slovakia, starts ahead of Forrest.


    Benchwarmers and journeymen ahead of Invincibles. If you stick with the tried and failed, you fail.

  19. mike in toronto on




    How ya doing, mate?



    That was the guy I was thinking of. Didn’t know anything about him before the game, but some player!

  20. To wee or not to wee?



    That is the question!



    Answer – play your best players in their best position then you’ll not be to wee.



    Is missing qualification going to bankrupt SFA? I ducking hope so.







  21. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    The omission of Callum (for the last few squads) was just ridiculous. Either he hasn’t been watching him or he has but thinks he isn’t good enough. Either way it’s a failure.


    The Strong Rangers Association will no doubt make a completely uninspiring appointment.


    I’d ask Paul Lambert if he would be interested.

  22. weebobbycollins on

    BTW…I’m 5′ 10″, although I spent so long in the shower this morning I may be only 5′ 9 1/2″ now…

  23. weebobbycollins on

    Now, if ma dugs could play fitba they’d be in wee Gordy’s team, ’cause they are big SOBs…

  24. Strachan won’t be sacked, Reagan doesn’t have the backbone to do what’s right, he may however resign. Hope so.


    Malky Mackay is already in situ, a cheap, uninspiring option. Back in the late 80s/90s under the Roxburgh/Brown regimes the national manager was also director of football. Can see them going back to that set up, they’re skint.

  25. I think a lot of people are taking the genetics comments out of context.



    Strachan’s point was simple, he’s concerned about the teams ability to compete with the physical aspects of the game and set pieces in particular.



    He was suggesting this was a motivating factor in picking Matt Phillips (English), Chris Martin (English) and Darren Fletcher. They might not be as talented as McGregor or Forrest but they would add some physicality.



    He was suggesting that Scotland are producing good football players but not particularly big ones.


    THOMTHETHIM 1226 previous.



    What p’d me off about that game was the three at the back against two fast wingers.



    They had the run of the lines,and Martin didn’t adapt to it.



    Played them off the park,but anytime they got a chance at the ball,hoof out wide and we were under pressure.



    Still,I backed High Chaparral at halftime in The Guineas. Still didnae make my day any better!!!

  27. Melbourne Mick on

    Hello again all you young rebels.



    Scots are too wee, at least Gordon hasn’t got the problem we’ve


    got over here you need deep heat on your neck with looking up


    at our under 14’s, the wee mhans touching 6 ft and the rest are


    all inches bigger than him and built like brick sh*t hooses it must


    be all the sunshine, but they still back off from the auld Glesga


    growl :-))


    A wee reminder to all Oz tims.


    As usual this Sun 15 th is our big Celtic day at the Bay Hotel Mornington


    hopefully our new upstairs venue will be fully renovated and open for a


    great party day so bring along any visitors and friends to meet the


    Aussie Celtic family we’ll have the wonderful Richie Mckay for music and


    our usual raffles, dancing, etc. and best of all a perfect sunny 26 degs


    expected. yeeeehaaa.


    H.H Mick

  28. Does anyone know who won the Eusebio Cup? Was that the one played indoors against Morton?

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
  9. ...
  10. 12