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. Ah lots of revisionism now in full flow as desparation abounds to justify the transfer debacle (and of course the CL debacle).



    Best bit of revisionism so far – step forward Malone Bhoy.



    We are trading up are we? really? Where is the evidence of that? I would say we are selling the family silver whilst trading down.



    Honestly – anything to pretend it isnt happenning!

  2. I am very happy with Celtics work this transfer window, the profile of young talented and hungry to prove themselves players is exactly the right stuff we should be recruiting. We have strengthened all across the backline and I can’t wait to see Jozo play he looks like a determined lad, watching Janko reminds me of Agathe with the exception that Saidy has better ball control, Dedryck looks like he needs games, but physically I think he can dominate every striker in the spfl. Big Tyler Blackett at last we have a proper left back (no offence Izzy) Tyler is a defend first then do what you can to help going forward player he can put a lock down on that left side ( We should buy him now). Ciftci is big strong, technically good and wants to play for Celtic, our number seven will score a load of goals for us. As for Scott Alan and Ryan Christie both good Scottish players with bags of potential already picking up personal accolades in their respective divisions and both have earned the chance to play for Celtic. Big Logan (Superman) Bailey, is he better than Zalusca of course he is, they don’t call him Superman for nothing.As for Big Virgil good luck my man, you where the best centre back I have seen at Celtic since Ramon Vega I hope you represent Celtic well in the epl.



    Hail Hail.

  3. the glorious balance sheet on




    I`m not up on CEO salaries but this KPMG report suggests that the median salary for CEOs in FTSE250 UK companies was £465,000.





    If Peter Lawwell is on £1 million a year – as is quoted on this site fairly frequently – then he seems to be doing very well in comparison to CEOs of much larger companies.



    If, as many people are saying, we are a peripheral club in an insignificant league with limited income streams and the CL group stages is way beyond our level then maybe the remuneration of all employees and directors should reflect that. I`m not sure that a £1 million annual pay packet is affordable or justifiable in that context.

  4. Hebcelt



    Ah makes me feel slightly better that it wasn’t the draw we would have got! Was so blinded by wanting to see us play over there – it might also have something to do with having just met an absolutely blinding yank girl who lives in Madrid, really wanted an excuse to go!



    Paul67 – I agree that a long term decision on bringing in talent is the way to go, but we are definitely light in terms of an old head at the back, and central midfield. Boyata is now the senior CB in our first X1 which has to be worrying, the guy looks shot of confidence and had Virgil to lean on so far.



    Regarding our group – Ajax have a very young team – my big worry is going to be in Turkey, Fener have a lot of old heads who have been around the block in Europe. That will require a Baku style performance but vs far superior opposition. Looking forward to seeing how Ronny sets us up in those games – IMO we can’t play 3 lightweight guys in front of Biton and Brown, we’ll have to rejig things to have 3 solid players across the middle of the park.

  5. .



    Some Kebabs are made from Lamb on a Giant Skewer grilled with a Pinch of Cinnamon..



    Other Kebabs are Processed Corned Lamb on a Giant Skewer grilled with a Grill..



    Sammi was a Striker who could play as a Lone Striker away from Home in Europe Hold the Ball up and Score Priceless Away Goals..



    Ciftci.. Is a Striker who can play as a Lone Striker in Europe..and Hold the Ball Up..



    Summa of StaticStrikersCSC

  6. Rowley Birkin QC on

    Spin spin spin….BBC national news report on up coming court appearance….reporter totally confused about the meaning of liqidation! FFS

  7. Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan supports Oscar Knox, MacKenzie Furniss and anyone else who fights Neuroblastoma on

    Afternoon All.






    Re the registered title bit. When Land Registration came into being in Scotland I remember my then senior partner asking a specific question: “When will we see the first person being charged with reset of a piece of property?”



    The reason for the question is that the process of registration, which provides the person gaining the title with a statutory guarantee, takes no account of the fact that the right to that title may have been gained by nefarious means – fraud, facility and circumvention and even straightforward theft involving an element of fraud.



    The poistion with the “Rangers Malarkey” is that we now have two distinct transactions which are alleged to be fraudulent:



    1, The loan obtained from Ticketus by Craig Whyte’s “team” which enabled the purchase of the shares of Rangers PLC to complete – and remember that it was a condition of that deal, imposed by the seller, that Whyte demonstrate that he had the money to clear of the bank.



    I will leave everyone to think about that,



    2. The acquisition of the assets of Rangers PLC by Charles Green’s “team” from Duff and Phelps acting as administrators of Rangers PLC.



    First observation on that score is to note the names of the three individuals who have been charged with in this connection. It would suggest that in some way these three acted in concert in relation to this transaction with each playing their part.



    I suspect that once that transaction was three quarters of the way down the road, Green then shafted Whyte and left him out in the cold.



    Let’s then pause there:



    As part of the agreement with the SFA for the admittance of Newco, it is alleged that the SFA demanded that Newco guarantee that Craig Whyte had no part to play in the newly formed club.



    By shafting him and putting him out the door ( allegedly ) Green was able to tell the blazers at Hampden that Whyte had nothing to do with the new entity.



    What he might have omitted was the fact that “he was part of the original plan, but I have stabbed him in the back and so he is now part of no plan at all.”



    Then again, that might have all been staged for the benefit of the SFA and the Bears while Craigy boy was actually in receipt of a few quid all the way through.



    It will be interesting to see what occurs and who says what in court.



    However, beyond all that you then have a the share prospectus that was issued by RIFC Ltd and if it turns out that there were further untruths in there then we have a third potentially fraudulent transaction.



    The various other loans that were sourced here there and everywhere might also be fraudulent if the lenders were misled in any way.



    The whole thing is a can of worms.



    What I can say for sure is that there is going to be more than one trial with the first transaction due to be indicted soon ( it runs to a statutory time limit from the day that the original petition warrants were issued ) and so these new charges will be run completely separately.



    Now all of this takes me to what happens next?



    Well, that all depends on what action Mike Ashley, BDO and various others choose to take.



    However, given the fact that there are criminal charges pending, and given the fact that admittance of the Newco was specifically conditional on certain matters, surely it follows that the SFA MUST announce its own enquiry into all of this?



    That enquiry would have a different remit and purpose to any civil or indeed criminal case involving the same facts, and one of those purposes would be to preserve and protect the interests of Scottish Football which must be of paramount importance to the SFA and all their member clubs.



    Which brings me on nicely to this comment from the previous thread:








    Had the ancestors of the current Celtic board been presented with a new invention called the wheel they would probably have tried to eat it! – See more at:



    Unlike the balls up some made in resolution 12 eh?



    – See more at:









    I have never discussed the details of Res 12 with you and am not sure if we have ever met. However I do recall you coming on here and spouting forth re Res 12 before and in all truth sounding like a fart in a cave saying that those of us who had pursued Res 12 had been outmaneuvered by the PLC board and that it was like boys playing against men or some such thing.



    So in relation to the “balls up” re Res 12 would you care to expand on what you mean?



    Further, what is your take on the most recent communications from the SFA solicitors which have been reported back to the Celtic board, and what would you do given the reaction of the Celtic officials?



    Would you proceed with the course of action previously agreed with the Celtic PLC board and company secretary or would you go down another route entirely?



    Are you criticising the board’s previous stance, actions, correspondence and position – if so, why?



    I ask these questions because there are more than those who post on here who are working on such things and have been for some time. They have taken professional opinion on a variety of complex matters and they have liaised with a number of people and gained their advice before proceeding. This includes the board acting through the company secretary.



    Yet you seem to know that something has been ballsed up!



    Please tell me what that is and I will pass it on to those concerend so that any ideas that are better than those followed thus far can be considered and actioned.



    To my knowledge, no one at any time has ever discussed the details of Res 12 activity with you but perhaps you know more than I.



    Now, if your comments above were spouted in response to my criticism of the lack of vision shown by the Celtic board in certain respects let me just say something.



    You will note that I did not comment much on the ins and outs of the transfer window. i would have preferred an experienced and potent striker but I would also want a real ball runner who can beat a man as I am of the wee Jimmy vintage and I know how lethal that can be.



    However, I believe that there is a sea change in our buying policy — only one loan signing this term and a tendency to buy good young Scottish talent the likes of which were mistakenly ignored in the past. That may not produce a quick fix for this season but might bear real fruit further down the line.



    We wait and see.



    So my criticism is perhaps somewhat different to that of others who post.



    What I am getting at is the need for a radical change of board with new blood and fresh direction – partly because of what is happening elsewhere in football and business.



    Such personnel change is something that happens internally within companies all the time and it is a good thing. Not everyone around the table will agree with every single idea and facet of business but a company like Celtic must evolve and change in its outlook continually or it will stagnate.



    As for my “eating the wheel” comment well let me just say one that not that long ago one of the Celtic board members acted and opined on a certain business matter. The activity concerned involved liaison certain senior members of the Celtic staff.



    From within the club it became clear that those staff members, and possibly other board members, took the view that the directors view of things was antiquated, ill researched, unrealistic, financially unfeasable, and a complete commercial folly.



    The Director concerned did not listen and pressed ahead with his plans:



    The venture concerned proved to be “ill researched, unrealistic, financially unfeasable, and a complete commercial folly” because he adopted beliefs and practices which belonged to three decades ago, and because he was way out of his area of so called expertise.



    Yet he still sits on the Celtic board and has done for far too many years.



    If you love this club, and I know you do, you want it to be run – in fact need it to be run – by the very best people available, and who those people are may well regularly change in response to new ways of thinking and new technologies which may well be essential to any club in the modern age.



    A board must also adopt to changes in the market place, changes in fortune and be able to look ahead and plan ahead. Some of our board members, in my opinion, are incapable of that.



    We have too many dinosaurs on our board, and the waters around us are filled with too many sharks to allow us to think that we can just tread water and not push on.



    There comes a time when all the managers, directors and CEO’s all have to move on for the sake of the businesses that they are in.



    It is called progress and criticism of the vision (or lack of it ) is not a criticism of them as people or of the club itself.



    It is merely an opinion and what would be the best thing to do next.



    Let me know about Res 12 as this week is an important one on that count – as you may well know?

  8. Guernica



    ” I expect Aberdeen to beat us….”







    And you are a Celtic fan ?

  9. Go tell the Spartim – Aberdeen haven’t played anyone of note? We have played the bottom 5 teams………….

  10. mullet and co 2 on




    Yip some truths there but we were beaten by Brechin (malmo) if we are Motherwell. Last season same.



    Aberdeen manage to beat everybody else but us and look like doing the same on not even a third of our turnover.



    What we do we don’t do well. I’m thankful that the clubs that can buy 30 million players are crap at that otherwise I’d throw the towel in as well.



    We have urinated about 15 million against the wall in Strikers. I’m pleased the flow has stopped but would have been nice to multi task and actually look for a new striker. Plenty of magpies getting shiney objects for a lot of cash down South but I presume the leading goalscorers in Holland, Croatia, Sweden, Norway etc etc all stayed put. Meanwhile we punted 5.5m on a 21 year old centre half who isn’t first Choice. You are having a giraffe.


    Malmo have beaten a higher seeded side as have Maribor. Why should we not think we can beat a higher seeded side?


    Still wrankles with me that Samaras was let go because he was apparently found out in Europe. What a laugh when you start with no end product Forrest and play Armstrong out of position. Commons was given a new contract despite never delivering away fom home in Europe.


    Ok on with patience.

  11. All sorts of stuff over at the midden, good time to have a laugh at thems and put the boot in, makes you wonder why people are still going on about the transfer window, the board, PL, Samaras, VVD, strikers, ah, I get it they probably think they have been punished enough eh? Forgot about that.


    Lurking Huns GIRFUYs

  12. Between now and the New Year window, recruitment planning should be limited to two areas



    (A) The Board Room



    (B) The Scouting Department



    New thinking at board level and a complete restructure of both the people and the methods utilised in the scouting department. Today’s header is a sorry excuse for a lack of any ability of those in said positions to carry out their responsibilities in an acceptable manner.

  13. Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan supports Oscar Knox, MacKenzie Furniss and anyone else who fights Neuroblastoma on

    weeron on 2nd September 2015 12:52 pm



    Lots of nails hit on te head there.

  14. Cultsbhoy I’m afraid your posts are becoming more and more bizarre -imo – @12:34 rather have Sammi with a broken back than Ciftci??? You’ll be telling us next you coach football. I undestand you are not happy but keep the posts credible like you used to. Remember those days? H H Hebcelt

  15. Well if big Simunovic turns out to be as good as, or better than VVD there’s going to be some red-faced, greetin’-faced clueless mineshafters on here going by the morning’s ANAL-ysis.



    If only PL and RD had turned to CQN before committing £8 Million of Celtic’s hard-earned then they’d have realised all those targets that took months of dilligent negotiation to acquire were, in the certified opinions of knowledgeable keyboard experts, ‘pish’…

  16. Speyside Lhad on 2nd September 2015 11:58 am



    over the last 3 years i’ve read most stuff available on the secvo saga, mainly here and phils blog and also his book ‘downfall’



    one thing that i’ve never been able to understand is how Green got his hands on everything for just 5.5 million, where did this valuation come from.?






    And that’s the very subject Mr.Green, Mr.Whyte and Mr.Whitehouse (‘Mary’ to his mates) are discussing today over a nice cup of vending machine coffee in a plastic cup with Cagney and Lacey.



    Then of course HMRC will be looking for an illegal administration verdict and assets to revert to original major creditors; the Ibrox Tesco Express dream inches closer…



    The prospect of a Green and Whyte joint trial fills me with glee; Jack Lemmon and Marty Feldman in the dock together = mega lulz.

  17. NegAnon2 on 2nd September 2015 1:24 pm



    Where’s that then? If you paid more attention you’d see I was saying that’s the plan, that’s the strategy, that’s the ONLY way to run a club in a smaller league if you want to have any sort of success in Europe or long term without going bankrupt.



    Obviously the hope is that Jozo can be or is as good if not better as VVD when he came at first and will improve. Boyata I have major concerns over but again the hope was that he’d be as good as Denayer (only this time we actually own his contract).



    We might not always get it right, and therein lies the problem, but that is the idea.



    What do you suggest? What is your masterplan?

  18. Ellboy



    How much was Sevcovic bought to appease supporters?



    How much of a role did that play because we act like weans when the sweetie jar is not full?



    There is a cost to appeasement Puki, Balde, etc but who demands we sign players to meet our views?



    We can’t have it both ways but we complain like eff when those buys that appeased for a month turned out to be buys we should not have made.



    Instead of blaming all the time how about we look at what it is in us that creates what we complain about?



    It’s an age thing mainly but not necessarily a factor of age. Some folk might grow up but never mature because they are blamers.

  19. What’s people’s perception of an experienced player….because I’ve seen some utter tosh written on here



    Keeper and Backline



    C.Gordon : as experienced as they get. Full International… Some 40 odd caps



    M.Lustig : 28 yr old, Sweden International… Some 30 odd caps


    D. Boyata : 24 yr old, has been on periphery of full Belgium squad


    Jozo Simo : 21 yr old, 9 caps Croatia under 21s.


    Emilio Izzy : 29 yr old, Honduran International… Some 60+ caps



    Scott Brown : 30 yr old, Celtic and Scotland captain…. Some 40-50 caps


    Nir Bitton : 23 yr old, Israeli International….. 10-15 caps



    So on and so forth….


    Our first 11 is more than experienced enough to deal with Europa League.

  20. Mullet&Co 2 your source for the Croatian? Do you not even have the decency to give him a name -or perhaps you don’t know? Just your source please.

  21. Tgbs,




    The link you posted has a ceo of a 250 company on a basic of 465k and a total salary of £1286k.



    I know these things are guidelines but according to the celtic accounts Pl has never had a total salary of more than £1m.



    Or am I missing something??




    Whether he deserves it or not is another point




  22. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    B.R.T.H. I do not claim to speak for anyone other than myself and I consider myself as an ordinary Celtic supporter .The thing about resolution 12 that in my opinion Auldheid has said on CQN that the resolution was progressing but the information he had at that time could not be shared now. I still dont know what that information was Auldheid had and he may have shared it by now and I may have missed it but it makes me understand why some on CQN think you are getting the run around from Celtic as in my opinion there has been a lack of feedback.I have heard many over the years advocate to have a fan on the board but if and when that happens the fan becomes more than a fan and certain things any board discuss they will want to remain private and the fan loses trust because of this privacy.This is exactly again in my opinion where Auldheid finds himself and rightly or wrongly he has lost trust and maybe even credibiltiy this may well be through no fault of his own as I am sure he is a true Celt at heart but that may well be the position he finds himself in. H.H.

  23. $64,000 questions



    1. Is the Team weaker out of this transfer window ? Yes



    2. Should Celtic have invested up front on a striker who would have secured CL prize of £30M ? Yes



    3. Have we strengthened the balance sheet ? yes



    4. Should we divert attention to Sevcos mess ? Yes

  24. the glorious balance sheet



    PL’s salary is actually around the average you quoted.



    The £1 million quoted is his salary plus bonus (which comes in at just under a million). I haven’t got time to have a close look at the KPMG figures regarding bonus’ as I’m at work but I’ll have a look when I get back.




  25. Can a player who has played more minutes of football than the rest of his defence actually be called a reserve player?




    Can anyone post what the like without the need to apologise for lying?



    Answers on a postcard.

  26. the long wait is over on

    “And I suspect the Champions League-ready bit might be a shot in the dark ”



    Yep , especially if you’re trying to recruit once you’re out of the Champions League and not trying to get in it..

  27. Mullet & co 2……1.50pm……. I don’t care how much we pay for players as long as they are successful on the field , although that invariably means they won’t be with us any longer than 2 years

  28. Hebcelt



    Samaras with a broken back is reference to his recently failed medical in Italy….Much I suspect as John Hartson failed with a dodgy back at Ibrokes before coming to Celtic.



    I genuinely feel Samaras was an excellent 1 man strike solution in tough games – where we needed to defend. I am ok with Ciftci in a Celtic shirt but he is not of the same quality as Samaras.



    Yes I am unhappy and I’m looking for answers. I’m not getting any ( that I want to hear)






  29. Glibby McShameless on

    I’m all for signing the best of Scottish talent.



    The GREATEST CLUB team EVER, were all from within a 30 mile radius of Celtic Park.



    They must however, be capable nowadays of operating against packed defences.


    We have in the recent past signed ones who seemed exceptionally good players when seen in their other clubs environment.


    For instance, someone in a match, say Motherwell v Dundee Utd. Both teams fancy they’ll win and have a go. One player stands out and looks the part. However when or if this guy signs for Celtic he meets several new obstacles. Packed defences, the oposition trying to stop them as if their lives depended on it, the MIBs and in the past, EBTs etc., etc.


    We need the ones who can overcome these obstacles. Those who will relish the challenge and win through against the odds.


    Leigh Griffiths is doing so. Can the others follow?



    Stuart Armstrong and GMS have remarked about how much tougher it is. Will they rise to the challenge? What about the new guys. Who will have the mental strength to succeed?


    I feel sure Scott Allan will. Nadir Cifti is really untested thus far, but I’m sure he will. Once we get a sight of the others we can make our judgements, but they’ll get my full support until they show otherwise.

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