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Remarkable transformation due to brave tactical variations

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Amid the enormous events of the season it is easy to overlook the remarkable transformation in Celtic from a team which was bumping along in third place in October.  The 3-3 draw at Rugby Park, when Celtic recovered from a 3 goal deficit in the final 20 minutes to grab a point, is often referred to as a turning point but I don’t subscribe to this, Celtic drew 0-0 at home to Hibs two weeks later as the deficit from the top of the league headed towards 15 points, albeit with two games in hand.

It’s not often I’m told “get a grip of yourself” but that’s exactly what was said when I suggested to our chief executive that if we lost the next game away to Motherwell we were in danger of finishing third.

He then went on to quote me the points gained/lost ratio Neil Lennon enjoyed between becoming Celtic caretaker manager until his team lost at home to St Johnstone in August – a remarkably successful period.  He knew the same ratio between that St Johnstone game and the 0-0 against Hibs, which he said was a problem that would be fixed.  For good measure adding that we would beat Rangers on 28 December and go on to win the league.

Refreshing, though it was, to hear such utter conviction in The Plan, I wasn’t convinced.  Rangers were on a roll and we just couldn’t put a series of wins together.  The change came against Rennes on 3 November.  Celtic came from behind to win the game 3-1, playing a tactically different game than we had all season.

Since then Neil Lennon has bravely changed tactics with more regularity than any Celtic manager I have known, even during games we have often seen three different strategies deployed.  Not all have worked but he has shown a willingness to take chances and has learned plenty about his squad in doing so.

This willingness to take chances and to learn has delivered the league title.

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  1. tommytwiststommyturns on

    Zbyszek – couldn’t believe it when he turned up at your club….can you not get him deported?! :-)

     

    Happy Easter mate, hope things aren’t too stressful just now.

     

     

    Right, time to think about eating some solids….mibees an all-day brekkie?!

     

     

    Laters

     

    T4

  2. Get well soon Paul George, broken leg in the game against rangers yesterday.

     

     

    Celtic Football Club ‏ @celticfc

     

     

    Paul George sustained fractured tibia and fibula in match. He will be discharged from hospital tomorrow. Could be out for 6-8 months. (TH)

     

     

    Indio

  3. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on

    Paul67

     

     

    Did the C.E give you a deserving cuff of the ear ? ;-)

     

     

    HH

  4. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on

    Neil Lennon,

     

    Champion of scotland

     

    and the embodiment of Scotland’s cognitive dissonance.

     

    Hail hail

  5. Afternoon Bhoys.

     

     

    Well what a truly memorable performance and day.

     

     

    Celtic Champions (sounds good doesn’t it)

  6. What is the Stars on

    Cairdin 3.25 at Fairyhouse and Mark Me Up 3.35 at Cork

     

    back both each way,

     

    Bon Chance Mes amis

  7. Silver City Neil Lennon on

    Celtic Football Club‏@celticfc

     

     

     

     

    Paul George sustained fractured tibia and fibula in match. He will be discharged from hospital tomorrow. Could be out for 6-8 months. (TH)

     

     

    They train evil into them from an early age.

  8. Paul.

     

     

    Have previously posted point about importance of the outcome of Rennes match’

     

    As recently as last night I was posted that Gary Hooper’s goal in above match was the season’s turning point.

  9. quonno on 8 April, 2012 at 13:53 said:

     

     

    Appalling typos in earlier posting. Should have read.

     

    Paul.

     

     

    Have previously posted point about importance of the outcome of Rennes match.

     

    As recently as last night I was posting that Gary Hooper’s goal in above match was the season’s turning point.

  10. Mark \o/ McGhee's \o/ Eyeliner \o/ AKA Mark Guidi on

    My heid is pure burstin’, that is all…..

     

     

    no wait, we are the champions.

     

     

    Hail hail

     

     

    MME

  11. Gordon_J

     

     

    Yes, hope the young man is back fighting fit for next year. I hear he was chopped down in the box against the huns, had his leg broken and the Celtic youths were still not given a penalty.

     

     

    Indio

  12. tommytwiststommyturns on

    MWD – ask him how many contracts he had? Cheating little dirtbag that he is.

     

     

    Anyway, this is a champion weekend, so nothing but happy thoughts.

     

     

    Cheers

     

    TTTT

  13. niar not far on

    oh dear….i cant remember much about last evening, but the flashbacks are not good. I think i proposed to somebody which would be ok apart from the fact that i know she would say yes….and i would say NOOO

     

     

    And i have toothache

     

     

    Apart from that all is swell :)

  14. Excellent article, Paul.

     

     

    Demonstrates the football mind of Neil and the faith that Peter has in him.

     

     

    Congratulations to both.

     

     

    P.S. Had a great time with your two pals yesterday. Fine lads.

  15. playfusbal4dguilders on

    Was Gary Hoopers 2 nd goal yesterday his first ever from outside the box?

     

     

    Best wishes Paul George, in the dark days remember Henrik

     

     

    P

  16. Very considerate of Celtic to print the T-Shirts with “Champions 12” on the back of them.

     

     

    It should make it quite easy to add the words “In A Row” at the bottom when the EBT judgements complete and the non-declared payments result in stripping of titles.

  17. Larsson and McStay on

    Indio on 8 April, 2012 at 13:58 said:

     

    Gordon_J

     

     

    Yes, hope the young man is back fighting fit for next year. I hear he was chopped down in the box against the huns, had his leg broken and the Celtic youths were still not given a penalty.

     

     

    Not 100% certain guys , but I’m sure I read that after he squared it , the Bhoys scored a goal. It did say he was taken out really late by the young Hun though after he played the ball. Saw they had 1 sent off later for a bad challenge on young Dylan.

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