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Self-knowledge, ever feel you’re being setup?

654

Let’s get this one out of the way first: put notions of Newco out of your mind for tomorrow. Those of you who will be at Ibrox, and who are old enough to remember our last visit there, will have a familiar experience.

From what we gather, the stadium hasn’t changed, the home team play in the same colours, there will be some new fans, but many will have been there the last time we visited.

I’ve been going to Ibrox for over 30 years, we’ve faced some pretty awful teams in that time, but it’s never been easy. We were 2-0 down at halftime in the 2-4 game in ’83 (when Rangers were really awful). We were under the cosh for 60 minutes before things clicked in the 0-3 game in 2001. We’ve won plenty there, but we’ve had to battle for everything we’ve had.  It will be no different tomorrow.

The 5-1 game in September happened because Newco were caught in the headlights. Perhaps believing their own preseason publicity, they matched up to Celtic. It was an embarrassing mistake, one they didn’t repeat in the League Cup semi-final, when they defended deeply, hoping for good fortune on the break.

Their big players were unprepared and looked unfit. Signs of the subsequent internecine squabbles were evident on the field.

Self-knowledge

Know your limits, who you are, what you can and cannot achieve, is a primary lesson in goal setting. As far as you and me are concerned, Newco will surely repeat their Hampden tactics, double-up in the fullback positions, protect central defence, and hope Auld Kenny can pounce on something on the break.

These are more-or-less the tactics we face every SPFL game, but I’m not sure what will happen tomorrow. This is a club who not only proclaim, but protest, with their every breath, that they are Rangers. Can ‘Rangers’ really line-up at Ibrox as scared of Celtic as everyone else in the league?

Maybe, but I’m not sure. There are signs that group-think has taken hold at Murray Park. They want to be the Rangers, with a century’s worth of ‘heritage’. If they want to live that out, they will need to take the game to us.

There’s a good chance that whatever they do, Celtic will win tomorrow. In the grand scheme of things, this matters little to the home team, who have beaten Aberdeen and Hearts this month, and look capable of snatching one of the Europa League qualifier spots. They were never really “going for 55”.

But if you bring the punters in on that promise, there will be pressure from the stands to live up to that sentiment. What to do, go for it and lose 0-4, or crawl into your shell, lose 0-1, and betray your season’s aspiration? I hope they go for it.

Brendan Rodgers has two problems; whether to play Moussa Dembele or Leigh Griffiths, and whether to give James Forrest or Patrick Roberts the nod? We have two highly-achieving strikers, only one of which will start, and two fit and ready wingers competing for the slot on the right side.

My hunch is that Moussa will get the nod. I know what you’re going to say: Leigh’s on fire, but Moussa has scored more goals in his two games against Newco than the striker they are all singing about this season has in his 17 appearances. Dembele terrifies then, with good reason. They have no answer to him, they cannot shove him off the ball, cannot keep pace with him and cannot seem to find him in the box.

I expect James to start with Patrick coming on late to pick at the bones.

Tom Rogic would have started if fit, but there’s an untold story of our recent form: Rogic, Stuart Armstrong and Callum McGregor have been our form players this month. Only two will start any game. McGregor and Armstrong will not be significantly weaker than any combination with Tom.

We also have Scott Sinclair back and approaching full fitness. He’s going to love Ibrox, he’s made for this game. I expect big things from him.

What are our biggest risks? Red cards. Newco’s best chance of getting something from the game is for Celtic to have a man sent off. I’m not going to mark your card on the referee, but we’ve seen too many Celtic players ordered off there over the years not to acknowledge the possibility.

The target for the team is clear: go into the winter break 19 clear with a game in hand. There’s a confidence in and about this Celtic team which makes anything seem possible, so don’t ask for my score prediction, as I might get carried away.

The target for our 7000 supporters is to have 7000 torches illuminating the 67th minute.  If there’s one guy not participating I’ll want to know why.  If you’re going, get this planned well in advance.

Juxtapose our targets with comments from Mark Warburton yesterday, who doesn’t want to be judged on results against Celtic.

I bet you don’t, buddy.  I bet you don’t.

Ever feel you are being setup?

Following vandalism in the away section of Celtic Park earlier in the season a reciprocal agreement has been made with the offending club.  In the very unlikely event Celtic supporters vandalise property tomorrow, the club will pick up the repair tab.

Without getting into detail, there is concern that some facilities will be ‘headline ready’ before Celtic fans enter the stadium.  If you are at Ibrox when the gates open, go straight to the toilets, be the first there, photograph any damage (and how empty the stadium is at the time) and publish immediately on social media, to time-stamp what you observe.

There will be a minute’s silence before kick-off.  For reasons which are difficult to fathom, Newco have not publicly announced this silence, it will be sprung on many fans.  This will lead to some arriving at the ground unaware of the commemoration, making its observation less effective.  Alert as many as you can that this is taking place.

Tomorrow will be a celebration of Celtic.  7000 light will shine at the 67th minute, the players will shine brighter-still on the park, but be ready, the same old faces are plotting the same old distractions.  Be aware of their tactics.

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  1. Jobo – lol. Visions of you stoating about with your bevvy listening out for the parties a la Billy Connolly! I’ll be down Burnside again, different mates this time. Don’t you be bringing down the tone of our neighbourhood.

  2. VFR800 now 821

     

     

    I think the Celtic fans should have a 1 minute applause in honour of those who died following a now defunct team

     

    That is showing respect

     

     

    Hail Hail

  3. For me there’s a horrible arrogance in telling fellow Celtic supporters what they should or shouldn’t do.

  4. Always wondered if the dependents from the disaster ever received some kind of compensation….remember reading in one of the rags years and years ago about how families were still waiting….just hope none of the fans step out of line and everything passes peacefully……after the 67 light show….follow up could be”always look on the bright side of life” make sure them phones are fully charged up……no led work lights thats cheatin

  5. CQN Hogmanay:

     

    Jobo – Huddersfield (Saturday 12:30)

     

    BMCUWP – Peterborough (Saturday 15:00)

     

    TET -Bolton (Saturday 15:00)

     

    GFTB – Dundee Utd. (Saturday 13:30)

     

    Lennybhoy – Plymouth (Saturday 15:00)

     

    Pog – Liverpool (Saturday 17:30)

     

    AWATR – Carlisle (Saturday 15:00)

     

    If your having a punt bet responsibly, none of the above accepts liability.

     

    Keep the Faith!

     

    Hail Hail!

  6. Early news this wek on the ole CQN COUPONEERS front. The gang of 7 have chosen as follows –

     

    Jobo Baldie – Huddersfield (12:30)

     

    BMCUWP – Peterborough (15:00)

     

    The Exiled Tim -Bolton (15:00)

     

    Gerryfaethebrig – Dundee Utd (13:30)

     

    Lennybhoy – Plymouth (15:00)

     

    Pogmathonyahun – Liverpool (17:30)

     

    Awalkacrosstherooftops – Carlisle (15:00)

  7. Silver City 1888 on

    James Forrest. I stopped putting money in their pocket almost 3 decades ago. There are plenty reasons to not go. There is one reason we have to be there. We can’t have our players surrounded by four walls of their hate.

  8. Hunderbirds are Gone on

    LIKE NO OTHER

     

     

    Enjoy the game tomorrow. Be careful.

     

     

    Did you ever get any feedback from Mrs McG?

     

     

    HH

  9. HAMILTONTIM on 30TH DECEMBER 2016 10:06 PM

     

    You should never tell a Celtic Supporter what they can or cannot do or indeed should or should not do.

     

    Respect each other’s reasons and do what you want to do, live and let live.

     

    Keep the Faith!

     

    Hail Hail!

  10. Paul67 et al

     

     

    Just spent some time with OldTim67. Both of us were at Ibrox in January 1971, along with many others, some sadly no longer with us. We do not need a minutes silence to remember what happened that day, we remember it and will never ever forget it. Rangers FC were responsible for every one of those deaths, they failed, over a ten year period, to address the design and structural faults which led to supporters dying in that very same spot back in the early 1960s. How often do those earlier victims get commemorated, not often I would suggest. Indeed how often have they had a minutes silence for the later victims since the 40th anniversary. Are we to suppose that TRFC always intended to commemorate the 46th, if so how about the 47th, or do the Celtic support have to be in attendance? As we were in 1971.

  11. Bit of disillusionment over PLCs collusion with THEM.

     

    Why.

     

    People like me ad the much abused Neganon forecasted all this but were dismissed as Board haters.

  12. JOBO BALDIE on 30TH DECEMBER 2016 10:12 PM

     

    By one minute…:)

     

    Hopefully the seven of us will win tomorrow…:)

     

    Keep the Faith!

     

    Hail Hail!

  13. CultsBhoy - Believes in Brendan on

    AFC tighten the screw …..the pressure builds.

     

     

    I hope it increases tomorrow…..2nd is still a hopeful ambition for The tribute act….

  14. Jonty: It may well be, but if there are EPL matches or other major sporting events they often take priority.

     

     

    The Bad Ass has been the ‘official’ home for Tims the last few years and pints are €5 which is very good for Temple Bar.

     

     

    It’s a temporary issue, nothing anti-Celtic, as far as I know.

  15. Lennybhoy

     

     

    Indeed mate. Each individual should be free to make their own choices on attendance/non attendance.

  16. VFR, Art of War, I don’t believe we have yet met, but we will remedy that in the coming year I hope.

     

     

    And thank you.

     

    COWIEBHOY on 30TH DECEMBER 2016 8:21 PM

     

    Doc

     

     

     

    Apologies meant to make it along tonight, but last day with current employer so was late in leaving

     

     

     

    Will be an interesting Eulogy tomorrow as the Auld Yin gave us some laughs and great memories

     

     

     

    Hail Hail big Malcolm

     

    ———————————————

     

     

    Cheers CowieBhoy, I knew something was amiss when you weren’t there.

     

    Small gathering tonight, and he is where he would want to be at this time, it’s comforting tonight.

  17. James Forrest, I tend to agree with you, but I wouldn’t want to see Celtic play any team without our support.

     

     

    We are famous for our support of our team for a reason.

     

     

    12thmhanCSC

  18. I would always urge my fellow Celtic supporting friends not to attend the gunnery but at the end of the day it’s their choice to attend or not.

     

     

    I haven’t been in the horrible pit since 1988 and I will never miss it.

     

     

    Absolute hunnery of a pit of evil.

     

     

    MWD

  19. CowieBoy, I agree regarding a statement, another opportunity to nail the myth.

     

    First time to play new rival at their midden etc. nothing difficult or controversial.

     

    If there was they could always take us to court, they seem to be keen on that sort of thing.

  20. I am a wee fat ugly guy.

     

     

    Did not meet a single handsome hun today.

     

     

    Well not more than me

  21. Doc – hope you have a right good send off for your dad trow. My old man passed away just before Christmas last year and I think of him every day but not always in a sombre way. He was someone I always looked up to, respected and loved and he taught me in all ways Celtic which was the gretest gift. Take care.

  22. saltires en sevilla on

    HT

     

     

    I wish we didn’t have to be reminded, but fully understand your point (and others)

     

     

    Yes, heard a playground version sung by P3/4/5 weans – just once back in ’71 – still remember the stooshie it caused, parents were sent letters, summoned to meetings etc., no-one was ever left in any doubt about suitability!!

     

     

    Never ever heard it sung since.

     

     

    I’ve heard some ridiculous crap sung, but in 40 years of parties, buses, foreign trips, pashed and smashed out the box, angry moods, defiant moods, blatant cheating, being telt to go home,..

     

     

    Never heard the Celtic support stoop to it.

     

     

    They never will, and the ‘silence’ will be observed, simply because we were raised as civilised human beings.

  23. Oíche mhaith, a chairde. Be safe tomorrow if you are any where near Hun territory.

     

     

    Kennedy’sindrumcondracsc

  24. Doc 10.24

     

     

     

    “he is where he would want to be at this time, it’s comforting tonight”

     

     

    Doc….. That’s closer to the truth than anybody will ever know, that one wee statement reminded me of both my parents in a very good way

  25. That”Handsome Hun”thing must only work for all the male Huns.Mrs TB is a Sevco fan,and is a stunner.

     

    Anyway,wont be on tomorrow,so to all CQNrs and families,have a wonderful New Year,god bless you all.

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