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State of the Club Report, December 2020

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My friends in Celtic, this is not a happy read.  Not since Tony Mowbray was in charge 11 years ago have we been under pressure like this at the end of the year; second favourites for the title by a significant margin.

A 12 game period saw us eliminated from the Europa League at the group stage with only one win and one draw to our credit, our first defeat in the League Cup in almost five years and a number of grim performances in the league that sees us 16 points adrift with three games in hand.

Unaccustomed as we are to defeat, the shock drew protests against the manager and board and worse for players leaving Celtic Park after the Ross County defeat.  Neil Lennon looked beleaguered as the board came under pressure to sack him but that campaign was itself undermined by an unexpected win against Lille, helped in no small way by the arrival of David Turnbull and Ismaila Soro in the starting line-up.

Crisis on the park added to pressures off it as the club had to cope without fans at Celtic Park since March.  Whatever sporting advantage was lost due to this is nothing to the commercial consequences, that will see the club plunge into debt.  Chasing their own Holy Grail, Celtic declined to sell their most saleable assets and pressed ahead with purchases in the summer.  It was a gambler’s play we have not often seen from Celtic.

Champions League income was a potential salvation that Ferencvaros extinguished in a pitiful manner.  Early season league form gave an indication of what was to come, then the music stopped with the visit of Newco.  Celtic did not record an attempt on target and were relieved of the points by a superior opponent.

2020 was the year Celtic won 9-in-a-row for the second time.  They started the year smarting from a home defeat to Newco but form after the break was imperious, while Newco did not have the legs for the race, or as their manager put it, did not have the “bottle”.  The Scottish Cup semi-final against Aberdeen was held over until November, the final, 11 days ago against Hearts, will live long in the memory.

It was a classic Celtic performance this season.  Two goals ahead at halftime, Hearts bossed the second period and took the game to extra time.  Again we took the lead, again Hearts levelled, but as Tommy Burns once said, “there is something about this club”.  The Scottish Cup was won for the fourth consecutive time, a new record, also securing the fourth consecutive treble and Celtic’s seventh overall.  We celebrated history in our homes.

That defeat to Ross County means another club will lift a trophy in 2021, the first apart from Celtic since 2016.  More importantly, the record we have tracked for nine years is in trouble.  Celtic’s form has improved significantly since that win over Lille, we are now back to playing the way we were early this year, but the gap at the top of the table is significant and we are up against an opponent that has lost only one game in all competitions this season.

You and I have seen Celtic come back from more difficult positions than this against original Rangers in 2007-8 and form at the corresponding stage of season 1978-9 gave no indication of how that title would be decided.  But having read the story of each of our 51 league title wins, I don’t think any would match a league win in 2021 – and I include 1998 and 1966.

We are only here because we know there is something special about this club, so ‘hope in our hearts’ is not easy to extinguish, but we will find out more about our chances on Saturday.

I hope you each have a safe New Year and a healthy 2021.  Take care, Paul67.

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  1. Saint Stivs :) My point was that despite all the hype imo we have better players than them , I didn’t really make that clear though ;(

  2. I wonder if it’ll be the morra

     

    that we are hit with the sensational “news” that will further spread

     

    “fear an’ anxiety”

     

    amongst Timdom

     

    from one or more of scoddland’s finest……………?

  3. RPM – Great Point well made sir, we are just starting to click now.

     

     

    3-1 to The Bhoys

     

     

    D :)

  4. I got your point you did make it well. On form our players are better. We just need to put in a disciplined performance.

     

     

    High hopes higgins.

  5. David66 Cheers bud if we sort out our defence we have a great footballing side imo , just buy a proper left sided central defender and it could all click :)

  6. Watched on sky three games in a row there.

     

    3-2 red red red game.

     

    1-0 Ntcham.

     

    5-0 Andy Halliday oh Andy Andy Andy .

     

    Where did it go wrong 🤔

  7. A strong team with settled spine takes time to form. The resultant robustness in character also takes time to build.

     

    We are beginning to build that -it’ll take time to gel – the leadership of the club bear the responsibility to get it right.

     

     

    I’m hopeful we travel in the right direction.

     

     

    HH.

  8. I’d like to wish you all a Happy New Year before heading for my bed, I go to bed at 9.00pm now so won’t be Celebrating new year when it arrives,

     

     

    (first time I’ve never celebrated at midnight.but my health comes first nowadays so all the best when it arrives.

  9. Oldtim67

     

    I hope you at least have a nightcap, Dave. I am going to have one of the Eden Mill`s Double Treble which is nearing its end now. As it is now out of print, I`ll have to keep some in case we do the Ten.

     

    Sleep well.

  10. A Happy New Year to all when it arrives .

     

     

    I’m aff oot tae dae wan o them zoom thingys.

     

     

    Paul 67 thanks for providing the platform for us to bitch and gurn and laugh and cheer.

     

     

    Oldtim67 good to see you posting ,take care stay safe .

     

     

    Up the Hoops

  11. The Blogger Formerly Known As GM on

    RIP Scotsman.

     

     

    Once upon a time I got sick fed up with the Hunned up Herald and started reading the Scotsman.

     

     

    Then they published ‘Sign of the Cross’ …………on their front page after Artur Boruc had the temerity to bless himself at Ibrox (following a ritual he observed at every other ground in Scoddland).

     

     

    I’m not catholic and I’m not religious, but it made me boke.

     

     

    I’ve minimised my consumption of Scoddish media ever since.

  12. Oldtim67- Goodn9ight sir and God Bless.

     

     

    You are right to look after your health. All the very best for 2021 and hopefully a better year for yourself and everyone.

     

     

    Hail Hail

     

     

    D :)

  13. HOT SMOKED. I got 2 bottles of Gin from relations at christmas and I’ve never even heard of them before,first is Elephant Gin, I don’t know what it tastes like but I like the 57% volume. And a carton of three, London Dry Gin, Sloe Gin, and a bottle of Think Pink Gin which I’ve never seen before,but will go down well when I decide to open them..

  14. Captain Tom et al bringing the Royal Variety show to a conclusion by singing…..YNWA !

     

    Huns will be going mental !!

  15. SAINT STIVS,

     

     

    Did you drink any of it,or is it just mislayed, it would have been nice to hear you say it tasted nice.

  16. “Elephant Gin produces award-winning handcrafted premium gin products made with rare African botanicals.

     

     

    While its story started in South Africa, Elephant Gin is handmade in Germany with a focus on the highest quality production standards.

     

     

    All ingredients are hand-selected, bottles custom-made, labels hand-written and production-controlled by small batches.”

     

     

    Cheerio `till next year.

  17. prestonpans bhoys on

    Alexa told to play Clash songs, beer52 from Poland this month, will hit the gin later 🍸🍸🍸😱

  18. glendalystonsils on

    THE BLOGGER FORMERLY KNOWN AS GM

     

     

    For an Edinburgh paper , the headlines The Scotsman produces on Newsnow Celtic are worse than the Herald or Record . “Devastating blow for Celtic ; Rangers to swoop for wonder talent” Blah , blah , blah .

     

     

    Actually , I made that one up but it’s typical of the kind of pish they produce regularly . I have now clicked on ‘hide publication’ for the Scotsman in newsnow .

  19. Magnificentseven on

    The Doc bought into the two teams in Scotland theory, he reckoned the only two teams were Celtic and ………………………………..

     

     

     

     

    Celtic reserves

  20. The Blogger Formerly Known As GM on

    Tonsils – indeed, they are now desperate for clicks/revenue and will print anything to get them.

     

     

    The internet rumbled the SMSM (take a bow Paul67) and long may it continue.

     

     

    Hopefully The Scotsman is the first of many to go by the wayside.

     

     

    Just a thought, but what would your life be like if you stopped reading headlines on Newsnow?

     

     

    Have a great new year.

  21. Guy – You tube type in Carry oot cabaret at hogmany 2020 – singers from the old shipbank courtesy of Lanarkshire council.

     

     

    MM – if you are lurking or Paddymacoz you will get it manan as you will be in full party mode already.

     

     

    HH

     

     

    D :)

  22. ERNIE LYNCH on 31ST DECEMBER 2020 7:48 PM

     

     

    TONTINE TIM on 31ST DECEMBER 2020 6:05 PM

     

     

    Not saying you’re wrong, but that’s not quite how Luigi tells it.

     

     

    *I know there’s always 3 sides tae a story, his, Jocks and somewhere in the middle is a combination of both.

     

     

    Give TD his due he rid the national side of the jobs for boys.

  23. Best wishes to oldtim67 and all posters here.i wish you and your families good health and happiness in 2021.Thank you for being here.

     

     

    Celtic

     

     

    HH

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