Respectfully disagree, Neil


I like Neil Lennon.  If Neil Lennon is talking about football, I shut up and listen.  But I respectfully disagree on other subjects.  If the last three years have taught us anything it’s that Celtic don’t need oldco or newco Rangers.  Unequivocally, Celtic Park is quieter since Rangers liquidated, the level of competition we previously had added many to the gates, none of us feel the anxiety of genuine sporting challenge, but so what?

If Celtic sell 40,000 instead of 50,000 season tickets are we mortally wounded?  The accounts would suggest otherwise.  Does it mean we cannot compete in Europe?  I refer to Neil’s record.  Does it mean we cannot attract quality players?  Well, it means we will not be able to attract some players, but I’m more than happy with the calibre of players we’ve recruited at the moment.  Good riddance to the parts of Celtic that went out the door when Rangers were flushed down the Liquidation Lavvy.

I’m going to cut Neil some slack.  I’ve been among Rangers fans and been generous enough to acknowledge income will rise at Celtic if newco ever reach the top flight.  It costs nothing to be magnanimous.

What we do need is competition, the like of which Aberdeen have given us in the league this season and they and Dundee United may provide next season, if current trends continue.    Congratulations are due to Hearts, who won the Championship before the clocks went forward, an incredible display of dominance, but as our two cup wins against them this season (3-0, 0-4) proves, they are miles away from providing the level of competition we see from Aberdeen.

Don’t have time to get dragged into a larger debate at the moment, but whenever Scottish football next turns its mind to strategic development, how to bolster Aberdeen and United should be top of the agenda.  I enjoyed our four games against United this month and the recent league game against Aberdeen.  More of them would be welcome.

We have a league split at the moment, where the top six hive off to play for the title, but it comes with only five games to play.  An earlier split, allowing us more games against those at the top, while creating more opportunity for teams at the bottom to pick up points from their peers, makes more sense.  Especially if more commercial income could be shared with the likes of Aberdeen and United.

Have you ever walked up Ben Nevis?  Will you ever do so?  It’s a big task if you are starting from scratch.  When is it safe, what do you wear, what if something goes wrong, how long will it take, what about nourishment along the way?

The Ben Nevis Huddle delivers much of what you need on a plate.  The Foundation have it all in hand.  You get to walk up the mountain with a couple of hundred other Celts.  They let you know what you need to know, check the weather for you and generally look out for things.  They have left no one on the mountain.  Yet.

What’s more, you get to do it in the name of Celtic FC Foundation, for our work with autism, downs, the homeless and destitute, those marginalised from our society, and those living in third world poverty.

It’s not the kind of thing you can sign up for the week before, the Foundation have lots to prep you for, so go sign up now.

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  1. Geordie Munro on

    Completely agree Paul.



    Celtic park may well be quieter at times this season but I’m enjoying the lack of disgruntled frustration.





  2. Geordie Munro on




    Europa league on different weeks to cl. Back to a Tuesday or Wednesday.







  3. Paul67,



    I agree Paul, we’re doing fine without them. However, not sure about more games against DUFC and Aberdeen.



    By the way, I noticed that Sevco will not be drawing down the second tranche £5m, but instead will get a £1.5m loan from the 3 Bears.



    Árd Macha

  4. glendalystonsils on

    Paul 67


    Having read the Neil Lennon interview and allowing for the possible hidden agenda of the interviewer, I very much agree with the article. Speaking only for myself, I don’t need or want them anywhere near us ever again, although I know this is wishful thinking.


    If NL misses them that much, why not ask the Bolton board to organise a “friendly” with Sevco. I’m sure the good people of Bolton will thoroughly enjoy a visit from their ambassadorial fans.

  5. Paul67 et al



    A combination of the type of attractive football Ronny is trying to achieve, 3pm kick-offs on a Saturday and hopefuly, a recovering economy, would solve at least some of our problems and ensure good crowds into the near future at least. It will not however solve all the problems facing Scottish football.

  6. Geordie Munro.



    To be fair, the club asked me (on two separate) questionnaires what would stop me renewing.


    I stated that moving games from 3 on a Saturday would do that.


    They obviously did the sums and decided they’d prefer me and my Faither (who got 2 knew knees yesterday) to be armchair supporters.



    It’s saved me an absolute mint.

  7. Good riddance to the parts of Celtic that went out the door when Rangers were flushed down the Liquidation Lavvy.



    Nice turn of phrase Paul67, and one that I wholeheartedly agree with.


    Let the challenge emerge from elsewhere. The basket-case that is Sevco, do not have the finacial wherewithal to even challenge for the league below us.




  8. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    Congratulations are due to Hearts, who won the Championship before the clocks went forward.




    I think you’re supposed to call it the “Competitive Championship” Paul.



  9. hi just back from side,turkey couldnt get posting at times, but remembering back there was a discussion on appropriate names for jobs….my old mans initials were C.C………he was an optician !!!!!! …a great fortnight (9 of us) the only game we missed was the draw(the 4-0 too but everybody on the net missed that !!)


    if memory serves KILLIE £7MIL,DUNDEE UTD£7mil,ABERDEEN£??,DUNDEE oot the game 2 times HERTS£ BANK OF DAVID MURRAY,all in debt when RANGERS were playing them.so how come if SEVCO come back to play them things will get better.



    RANGERS cheat CELTIC to win 3 league titles.reward £30mil from champions league.stole from CELTIC £30 mil.oor peter says it costs CELTIC £10 mil without thems.



    have the ……..tics taken over the …….lum.




  11. Geordie Munro


    14:13 on


    23 March, 2015





    Europa league on different weeks to cl. Back to a Tuesday or Wednesday.






    Great idea.UEFA have been talking about making the UEFA Cup more of a draw.Giving the winners a CL spot was the 1st.Think they have been talking about moving the games to give them a better TV audience.

  12. glendalystonsils on

    I read that £5,000 of the £9,500 EUFA fine for the Inter game was for team indiscipline.


    I thought we were appealing that on the grounds that the referee was a plonker?

  13. Geordie Munro on




    That’s great.



    But back to the main issue regarding Sundays.



    Either start qualifying for the CL or move europa league away from a Thursday.



    I’d quite like both to happen :)




  14. Geordie Munro on




    I like watching football but after watching Barca v somebody and bayern Munich v somebody else I have little interest in Everton, spurs or whoever.



    Now if they were playing this week with no sexy game on the days bbeforehand, I’d be more inclined to watch.




  15. Rock Tree Bhoy on

    Hi Paul,



    “I enjoyed our four games against United this month and the recent league game against Aberdeen”



    Pretty sure most of us did but that’s because bar the initial draw at Tannadice we won all the other games convincingly, throw in a defeat in any of those games and we would all be feeling a lot differently today,



    Agree with you 100% re deidco, we dont need them and we dont want them, anyone uncertain of that watch the last 10 minutes of the game at Easter Rd yesterday, nearly put me off ma dinner, all that triumphalism for winning their first game in 6 or whatever, absolutely nauseating…

  16. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    I haven’t seen the interview with NL, but I can have a decent guess at the drift.


    What nobody seems to be willing to address is what “Rangers” in the Premiership would look like.


    They are 26 points behind Hearts, who finished 76 points behind us last season. But next season they will be challenging us????


    To be competitive they would have to use the same funding methods the liquidated club used. Is Neil and the lamb munchers advocating that approach…..?

  17. Paul67 et al



    Not quite sure I can agree with your logic there. An earlier league split would enable Celtic to play more games against the bottom teams surely, rather than against those who are in the top six. Let us say we include eight teams, that only leaves four to battle against relegation. Now they might like that kind of thing in the NHL in North America but it will not work with a league of twelve. Might work with a league of sixteen mind you. Is that where you are leading us?

  18. Cliftoncelt


    14:22 on


    23 March, 2015


    Not again!!


    Two more fines for celltic.



    UEFA will be taking in a small fortune this week regarding “Smoke devices”,not flares,as our SMSM love to call them.


    Against Rennes,Celtic were fined for”Illicit chanting”???????,which was reported to UEFA by a Scottish match commander!!!!!!.


    The “Bobby Sands/William Wallace”display by the GB,was another disgraceful fine,prompted by our very own SMSM.

  19. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    Geordie Munro 14:13






    Europa league on different weeks to cl. Back to a Tuesday or Wednesday.







    Good idea in theory, but would mess up domestic cup midweek games and internationals.

  20. I wish ex-Celtic employees would stop pining for the basket case that is the Sevco group of clubs. How on earth could they even attempt to play in the top division when they can’t pay their bills in the second.



    This silence from the SFA tells us all we need to know about the whole situation.



    If they are gerrymandered back to the top division I will chuck it all together.



    The top division is doing perfectly well without them and the last thing we need is ex Celts pining for them and giving the media and the powers that be even more ammunition to cheat them back to the top..



    Stoap it FFS.

  21. Bawsman



    The 3pm game on Saturday attracted a reasonable crowd, given it was 4 in a row.


    Some of that may have been down to the weather, but I enjoyed the traditional kick-off time.



    The Tv tail appears to wag the dog in this respect, but is it worth it for the purported £1m we recieve in revenue, when the fans contribute vastly more ?



    I would much rather we played all league games at 3pm Saturday, with an extended highlights programme on, on a saturday tea-time slot .



    If enough fans have stopped going for this reason, they should voice this to Celtic.


    I don’t know if it would have any effect, as i know it is very hard to put the genie back in the bottle.




  22. I loved Neil as our manager. Given what he suffered at the hands of those who support the dead team Neil, more than anyone, should realise that the last thing that we need or want is their tribute act at the top table.


    For me I knew this. It was embedded in my soul but if I needed any evidence to support what my soul was telling me then our recent experience in the League Cup semi against their tribute act confirmed this.


    Incidentally as much as I loved Neil Lennon as our manager I prefer Ronny.

  23. timbhoy2


    14:35 on


    23 March, 2015


    Turkeybhoy and Tallybhoys.Sorry for hurting your feelings Darlings xxxxxxxx



    Obviously you did not read my post correctly.

  24. mike in toronto on

    Just checking in and a few disappointments today ….



    that discussion at the end of the last thread .. not what I expect from this blog.



    NFL .. “It’s essential for the game in Scotland that Rangers get back to the Premiership as quickly as possible.”



    increasingly, disappointed in some of comments. Thought that he, more than anyone, would know and say that there are some things more important than the additional money they might bring. Sometimes, when he was at Celtic, I got the impression that he was ‘toeing the party line’, trying to keep his boss happy/make sure he remained employed … and, on a certain level, I took his comments in that spirit, and could sort of understand that, even if I didn’t always agree with some of the things he said/did …



    However, since he is no longer employed here, there is no reason for him to be discussing it, or if he does, for him not to tell the truth, so I will assume that this represents how he genuinely feels. If that is the case, then I am deeply disappointed in him.



    Probably no skin off his nose, but just needed to say it.

  25. Regards the 3 Bears loan to the Huns to pay this months dues,can anyone remember the timescale of MAs loans to them.Was the £5 million to be re-payed in April?.Or am I getting their various begging bowl shennanigans mixed up?.

  26. The Battered Bunnet on

    Craig Levein tweeted: Ann Budge OBE – Over Before Easter



    Didn’t know the guy had a sense of humour.



    On the Ben Nevis jolly… I do a lot of hill walking, well, a fair amount, mostly spring – autumn, with the odd wee winter wander in the snow when time and daylight allows.



    Never been a “Munro bagger” though, I like the hills for themselves rather than their somewhat contrived designation. Can’t really see the point in spending half my adult life climbing only those hills that exceed the arbitrary 3000 feet, and ignoring hills with different character, different adventures to find.



    Try telling Suilven it’s not a proper mountain like say Ben Chonzie…



    Nevis has never caught my imagination though. Maybe it’s the ubiquitous popularity of the hill, being the highest on these islands. Maybe it’s because it seems there are always so many enticing hills nearer to home or further away to choose from. Maybe it’s really the anxiety of a relentless 4 hour slog to the top, starting at sea level.



    Best (and biggest) walk I’ve done in Scotland is the Clachlet Traverse, 1.5 ‘Nevis’ equivalent ascent over 5 Munro tops and 20 miles. Doubt I’ve got the fitness to repeat it though.



    And there’s the thing… committing to the Nevis challenge means committing to getting fit enough to enjoy it. Which means getting fit… which means I’ll be fit before the summer season.



    Ach, I’m talking myself into this, amn’t I…

  27. We already play the same teams too often so no thanks to any more matches against the same opposition. The split can make things more interesting from a league table perspective but I’m dull from a footballing point of view.

  28. West Wales Celt on

    An earlier split?


    More games against Dundee Utd?


    Personally I was sick of the sight of them Paul…

  29. starry plough,



    Yes, the £1.5m could only really cover wages, not HMRC payments in my view.



    They’ve been trading as insolvent for a while now. Again in my opinion.



    Árd Macha

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