Recruitment planning


How was the transfer window for you? The perceived negatives: we didn’t sign particularly experienced players and we only signed one striker. We also lost the best central defender we’ve had in years.

The positives: we recruited the first on the list defensive (Simunovic) and striking (Ciftci) targets, so we were not scrambling around for literally anyone (Scepovic) on the final day of the window. There were a few experienced, Samaras-types on offer, but the decision was taken to stick to plan.

The first issue I raised was about the striker headcount. We could have brought in any one of a number of players, but forget Fletcher or Michu, we’re not talking that calibre. The waifs and strays we’ve churned through since 2012: Lassad, Miku, Bangura, Scepovic, Guidetti have been a considerable waste of money and opportunity.

An overhaul of process took place for striker assessment, no one would be brought in without new levels of assessment and aptitude. The was an acceptance that we are light in headcount but options available in recent days convinced no one they would be better than Scepovic, and the club were happy to cut him loose. The squad needs focus, fewer passengers and space for our own youths, not just Dundee United’s, to break through.

Although his start at Celtic has been considerably hampered, Ciftci met the criteria. He was watched extensively and the manager knows what role he wants him to play. We’ll see if he proves to be more effective when he returns to the team, hopefully fully fit, after the international break.

Lack of experience has inhibited us and there are certainly experienced players we could have brought in for the money spent on Simunovic. Would this help short-term with the forthcoming Europa League campaign?

From here, it feels like it would, but a team development decision was made. Recruitment criteria is to bring in players capable of reaching the highest levels of the game. Get them in, get them playing the same way together. Recruit late-teens, early-20s and build a team. We can afford players who may have genuine talent at that age.

A year ago, when we were recruiting to replace Neil, I asked for a student of the game who could plan like this; improve players and build a team. I also wanted a striker yesterday, not a Scepovic, of course, just someone Champions League-ready.  There’s no question that we have to plan like this, or that the hemorrhage on bench-material strikers has to stop.  And I suspect the Champions League-ready bit might be a shot in the dark.

If the plan works, it’s going to take time and a bit of patience (aye, I know, patience, you don’t need to tell me).  Other plans are available, therein lies the joy of team management.

Over to you now, Ronny.  Show us some of that awesomeness we read about.

I’m going to write later on the business over the city, if only because I’m itching to run an article with the headline:

Green, Whyte and Gaol-d © CQN.

Speak then.

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  1. Not a flounce.



    Repeat: Not a flounce.



    Will check back in for the Aberdeen game. The interminable International break/Malmo debacle/signings debate will/is making this a hard read just now.




    Re sevco, jail all the huns and bulldoze Ipox. Simples.



    Au revoir the noo.




    Saw your big up re –



    Alex Butterworth – The World That Never Was.



    A very good book (IMO ) Sold well in Italy .

  3. As far as I understand Ronny was brought in to implement a new system and a new direction at Celtic, so the way I see it is you either support him and the bumps along the way in doing that or you fire him after having made a statement that that was why you brought him in in the first place:))



    We as Celtic supporters have a choice and it’s a simple one, you support the change in direction and the ups and downs of doing that or you want us to win everything on the way through the change and expect the team to gel sooner rather than later.



    I guessing and it’s purely a guess that Neil’s departure caught us on the hop last year so the transfer targets were already in place with a few desperate attempts to show up the team for the new guy. so i don’t consider that to be a Ronny window which means he’s had two windows to build his team.



    Personally I don’t think that’s enough but young tall strong players seems to be his idea and the backline could prove to be decent, it will take time it always does.



    Are we as a support willing to give him time?



    That remains to be seen but happy or unhappy, whether I like the management or not I have been unable since the 60’s to stop supporting Celtic!.



    There are divisions on here there always have been but the more recent pigeonholing of supporters who have different views has become more extreme and that Bhoys and Ghirls is not an improvement to the blog.



    I don’t appreciate being called a board lover just because I don’t want to grab a pitchfork and a torch and head to Celtic Park, my truth is somewhere in between.



    I want Celtic to be a viable team in Europe that’s my ambition for the club, can we achieve that, difficult but not impossible.



    Can we buy our way to that, again I doubt it.I went to bed disappointed last nightthat we didn’t secure the services of another striker and was confused as to why someone like Ronny was on holiday whilst we were negotiating players unless of course he already knew who was coming in and basta!



    Is our strategy of buying in young inexperienced players to achieve that going to work, I have my doubts but Big Vic and Fraser Forster both become CL players at Celtic so there’s no reason the new crop can’t too unless they’re shite of course:)))



    This season could be bumpy then again it might not, that’s Celtic.



    I’m in…




    P.S. experienced is the new left back..

  4. SOT



    Fab book….19th century Russian Anarchists….The People’s Will.


    Scary mob.


    Read sure you would enjoy it.




  5. The Battered Bunnet on




    In many respects, it would be best for most concerned if the assets were eventually repatriated to BDO, and a new entity subsequently bought them and set up a new, clean club.



    In the rush to have a “Rangers at any cost” in 2012, no one involved stopped to consider what that cost might prove to be. Certainly the fans of the old club, those to whom the old club meant most, were side-lined, marginalised and manipulated. Had they been given the time and space to start over, things would have worked out differently, but it seems that commercial interests and ‘continuity’ were more important than good judgement.



    Commercial interests and continuity remain the motivators for those who are responsible for protecting and fostering the Game, and for protecting it from abuses.



    Hell in a handcart springs to mind.

  6. SOT



    Sorry…you have read it.


    Wild and wooly….blowing up the tsar, all in a days work.


    Modernity unleashed…with dynamite.


    Make an awesome film….if somebody was brave enough.





  7. theglasgowcelticway on

    I don’t understand why, with Scepovic and Stokes clearly not in the managers plan, both weren’t allowed to leave and another recruited.Are we to believe that throughout the whole of Europe there’s not one striker who was willing to join us?? This is an error, possibly serious and could come back to haunt us.I bet Aberdeen are quite happy with our transfer dealings.

  8. SOT



    Can I suggest two wee snippets you might enjoy.


    I was on you tube recently…I stumbled across two early short films.


    Berlin in 1900 in colour….its in two parts.


    The colour brings the period to life in a startling way..


    Also….San Francisco in 1906….four days before the famous earthquake.


    Camera strapped to the front of a trolley car……about 11 minutes long, the soundtrack is absolutely haunting.


    It is pretty amazing footage.





  9. The Green Man,



    I know you didn’t accuse me of anything, and I didn’t write that in my comments. This is how I think the confusion occurred;



    Your post at 10.51 appeared to accuse others of creating division on this blog. My post of 11.02 asked you if that was the case – the first part of my post was a separate reply to JJHS, on a separate issue.


    JJHS wasn’t involved in this discussion at all.



    It looks to me like you’ve read back and thought JJHS and not me posted the question as his name was the first word on my post and you subsequently addressed your reply to them.



    Anyway, if you were accusing others of creating division, I think it was a bit rich to say the least as I think your recent posts have been creating division, without offering anything constructive.



    What’s your ideas for what we should be doing instead of what we are doing? If you have any, put forward your argument for alternatives, try to convince me and I’ll read it. It’ll be a much better thing than just saying the same thing over and over again. People switch off and scroll by if you just repeat yourself.


    I was expecting a striker to be signed and so I’m disappointed when it didn’t happen. However, I’m willing to give Ciftci a chance and I think I would bore even myself if I kept mentioning my disappointment.





    Sounds like that band should maybe have taken jobs as fire lookouts, instead!



    Have you heard of this website, I keep imagining the owner is your secret alter-ego;



  10. Paul67 its all fantasy


    A made up dream that no club has successfully done



    All that will happen is our European seeding will suffer and if the deid club come to our league , then it will be a godsend for them



    You said about 6 years ago that our only way forward is to have a team with a few high earners to help players brought through from the youth teams. I agreed


    This is Motherwell , Aberdeen, Hibernian policies Where they try to create their own stars


    We have lost it now

  11. Afternoon Timland from a hot hun free mountain valley


    Many think Pedro is doing a grand job.


    Many think he isn’t.


    I am in the he is doing a grand job re the finances, and for working to a remit, a remit that I have not a clue what he is working to mind you, but he must be doing it well, or he would be out of a job.


    So lets leave Pedro out of the picture for now.


    It’s the direction the club is going that has me bothered, we have a board of directors who in their own right are captains of their industry, yet they don’t seem to be doing anything that is in any way innovative.


    Take Celtic TV for example, we have comms guys on the board and they give us this for £40 a year, for £40 a year you get what you pay for, what are they doing re comms with the fans, where are they doing re standing up for the support, where are the talks re another euro league set up, what new innovations have they come up with, what are they doing re the corruption that is ingrained in the scottish game, these are a few questions that we should be asking of them, what are they doing on the board if not furthering the direction of the club.


    Guys like Brogan etc have on many occasions posted superb ideas on how to make money and take the club forward, why are these so called captains not doing the same thing.


    It’s about time our other suits earned their coin, or is it all about the status symbol of being a director.


    Pedro can’t do everything.






    Ah – Narodnaya Volya .



    My old man was big on political pamphlets – remember a series of pamphlets re The Peoples’ Will..I read such things whilst lying in bed listening to Radio Luxemburg. .



    Off oot !

  13. Early afternoon all.



    Lovely day down here.



    Have things brightened any on CQN?



    I hope most of us have read and digested the recent contributions of BRTH. We need to be fully aware of our situation vis a vis our nearest neighbours and the other leagues where teams have loadsamoney. Anyone of talent will want to ply their trade there, both because of the financial reward and the likelihood that they will become better players. Imo, that means we are unlikely to attract any striker of real class who is the finished article. Such players are out of our financial reach.



    As for his input into the possibly nefarious goings on in Govan, that brightened me no end. Could the deid team’s current incarnation be suspended for being illegally given permission to play in the SPFL?

  14. Go tell the Spartim on

    I am still trying to reconcile that Ciftci was our top striker target – case of wait and see, like so many other of our strategies over the years.



    Aberdeen havent played anyone of note or with decent players yet so we will see what transpires when they and the MIB’s have to face us. they still dont have one player that would get in our team and possibly squad, including Rooney

  15. Dharma Bam



    Crossed wires, no problem.


    My general point was about the idea of a subscribed blog….im not in favour.


    In regard of solutions at the moment….I see it in simple terms…..change of strategy, and change in the PLC, and scouting set-up.


    I do not….advocate wild spending, but neither do I condone the bonus culture at CP.


    I could go on all day….but I’m on holiday, so I wont.


    Anyway…no harm done.




  16. todays headline article was brought to us courtesy of Peter67…..






    Cifcti was number one striker target – who ever drew up that plan should be sacked!



    Simunovic our number 1 defensive target – was that ahead of retaining VVD? Why was it a last minute piece of business if he has been a long term no 1 target?



    I’m sorry but CQN is now a Board mouthpiece imo.

  17. the glorious balance sheet on

    Scroll down the page on this link-


  and InternationalSites=’United Kingdom’ and IsContactPerson’1’&pwhere= and InternationalSites=’United Kingdom’ and IsContactPerson=’1’&page=2



    and the bold Duff and Phelps are still trumpeting the services of David Whitehouse without any mention of the fact that the guy is currently “helping police with their enquiries” in relation to the Great Sevco Stitch-Up.



    Strange, you`d think they wouldn’t want the guy linked in any way to their company the minute the police stepped in.

  18. The Battered Bunnet on

    From the BBC:



    Three men previously involved with Rangers are due to appear in court charged over the “alleged fraudulent acquisition” of the club in 2012.



    Former owner Craig Whyte, 44, took over Rangers in May 2011 before it entered administration and liquidation in 2012.



    Charles Green, 62, led the asset buyout consortium. David Whitehouse, 50, was with administrators Duff and Phelps.



    All three men were arrested on Tuesday and are expected to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court later.



    Mr Whyte bought Rangers from former owner Sir David Murray in 2011 but the club entered administration in February 2012 after running out of cash.



    Mr Whitehouse, who worked at Duff and Phelps, was appointed as joint administrator for the club, along with colleague Paul Clark.



    When an agreement with creditors could not be struck, allowing the club to exit administration, a sale of Rangers’ assets to a consortium led by Mr Green was concluded.



    He was at the helm when Rangers were allowed to join the Third Division but stepped down in 2013 following allegations that he was working in conjunction with Mr Whyte.



    The police investigation has focused on allegations of fraudulent activity in relation to the sale of the club’s assets in 2012.





    This isn’t a trivial matter.








    Is that the best you can do?



    Ffs,that’s a challenge to the more cerebrally-minded amongst us,surely someone can do better.



    FWIW,all I could come up with was Banged to rights and Banged tonight. I reckon they’ll miss the comfy seats in the directors box.



    Oh,and a few bird puns from the other night. I’m ashamed at that level of performance…




    I know and like that blog .I’m a sucker re reading about vinyl – even If I don’t particularly like the music.

  21. Sooner or later we need to buy a striker. Unless there is a ready made one from Lennoxtown that I don’t know about. For goodness sake, we have the money (I think) Wee Leigh needs some back up. Good luck to Chee Chee, but he is in unknown territory.

  22. Recruit late-teens, early-20s and build a team



    We don’t build teams anymore, we buy players with a view to selling them down south within 2 years at a large profit. That’s not team building.

  23. If Leigh Griffiths is to be our lead man throughout this years campaign, I for one have absolutely no issue with that.


    That he touched the ball at most twice over in Malmo, is a sad reflection on the service to him, and the support from the 9 players in the positions behind him.



    If the transfer window has worked out well for anyone at all, it’s Leigh Griffiths.



    I foresee a season tally of at least 28 goals, but back him to break the 30 barrier.

  24. dr ramesh and the love potion on

    Players in, players out….at the end of the day all we are looking for is a couple of new heroes to emerge and unite us in our quest for….the SPFL title and a few euro co-efficient points. Come on potential heroes, show your faces!



    Potential heroes (and saviours of our club) in order:



    1. Tom Rogic – languid but with amazing quick feet and as we are now seeing, an eye for a goal or a pass. My no.1 choice as our potential new hero.



    2. Stuart Armstrong – once he starts playing more centrally watch him grow as a leader.



    3. Saidy Janko – he’s going to rip every left back in the country a new one…



    4. Leigh Griffiths – it does what it says on the tin, goals, tea cakes, children, high jinks…



    5. Scott Allan – passes that find players in dangerous places. Huns GIRFUY!



    6. Nadir Ciftci – after a difficult start he starts on the path to be a cult hero with goals, tricks, red cards …



    all insipired by our glorious leader, the one and only half p@shed, Ronny ‘the Karaoke King’ Delia.



    Bring it on!


    Emdy fancy a dayoooot in Glasgow,check yer inbox and junk box for 10/10.



    If nothing there,mail me at





    for details of the latest Hootenanny episode of Middle-aged Men Behaving Badly.



    It’s fairly straightforward-turn up,talk Celtic and whatever else you want,have a few,meet some people you might not otherwise have done,go home.



    Did I mention falling down? Happens,heyho…

  26. As for Cifti, I’m really struggling to see where he will have a role to play.


    Possibly in Europa league, away games.


    There is potential sense in having the greater physical presence of Cifti over Griffiths.



    But that equates to 3 games this season, possibly 4 if we qualify beyond Christmas.



    If it’s 4-2-3-1 every week, then in simple terms its Leigh Griffiths every day of the week.mand Cifti is no more than back-up.

  27. ruggygman on 2nd September 2015 12:28 pm



    If Leigh Griffiths is to be our lead man throughout this years campaign, I for one have absolutely no issue with that.


    That he touched the ball at most twice over in Malmo, is a sad reflection on the service to him, and the support from the 9 players in the positions behind him.




    Correct. He kneed as many Malmo balls as kicked the football last week.

  28. Cults. We are now trying to do what we did in the late eighties and early nineties



    Run our club like Motherwell and Aberdeen



    Didn’t work then and won’t work now

  29. SOT,



    I shouldn’t have been surprised you already knew of it. Mainly, I was interested in the Doors stuff with a soupcon of Laughing Len, to see what the fuss was about. My only real exposure to his music is Jennifer Warnes’ Famous Blue Raincoat.



    I mean, they’ve Bob Dylan listed as music on that, for a start!



    (lights touchpaper and retreats to a running Buick 6 to revisit Highway 61 – that’s for you BMCUWP!)

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