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State of the Club Report: year end 2015

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2015 saw Celtic win our fourth consecutive league title, a feat achieved only twice before in our history: 1908 and 1969. The 1908 win came during Willie Maley’s team’s imperious 10 titles in 13 seasons. The 1969 win, by one of our greatest teams, preceded our second run to the 1970 European Cup final, where we lost to Feyenoord in Milan.

It was only on reflection that we realised 1970 was a turning point for Celtic. Jock Stein’s teams eliminated the champions of Italy, Portugal and England that season, a far more testing journey than the team of 1966-67 endured. Until that point, only Celtic and Real Madrid outside those three countries had won the European Cup, but Martin O’Neill would be manager the next time Celtic eliminated a team from what we now know as Europe’s major five leagues.

We knew nothing of that in 1970. Indeed, Celtic won a further four consecutive league titles, but others were laying better foundations. Our model was copied, improved upon, and eventually rendered irrelevant. Celtic travelled to Milan for that European Cup final in 1970 with the whole of Europe expecting to them win. We were the top team in Europe, clearly heading in the right direction. Or so it was thought.

The reality was that we were facing the wrong direction, we just didn’t know it.

There are parallels between 1970 and now. Four in a row is appreciated by those of us who craved a quarter of this achievement in the 1990s, but our domestic dominance is such, that we all look to Europe for that extra fix. Now, it’s not a European Cup final defeat we’re lamenting, we’ve been exposed by lesser-resourced teams as we bombed in the Europa League.

Apart from the fourth title, and five-in-a-row looking a comfortable certainty, the other portents have us heading south. Two seasons of Champions League football have been followed by two of Europa League, with performances dropping each consecutive season. What we don’t know is whether what’s happening on the surface is indicative of the foundations we’ve been laying for 18 months.

Herein lies the issue: the fruits of Ronny Deila’s labours are not evident, not on the surface, anyway. There are some positive portents: he’s improved Nir Bitton, blooded Kieran Tierney and given Leigh Griffiths the stage his talent needed, but this season spaces in our defence have been as wide as the Clyde, and just as worryingly, the transfer success hit rate has been abysmally poor.

Fixing the former problem should be achievable, Ronny has taken teams to the Milan, Amsterdam and Istanbul and defended professionally (if not successfully), but fixing the ineffective transfer strategy will be more difficult. It’s not clear why we’re misfiring, or whether we can amend our ways. Throwing more money at the problem may improve things, but the problem is not fundamentally finance, Malmo and Maribor both operate on a fraction of our expenditure.

There are mitigating circumstances for our recruitment woes. Unlike Malmo and Maribor who take time to develop teams, we’ve been buying first team players for years, and the market has moved away from us at a remarkable rate over the last five years.

A decade ago only a few teams in England could outbid us, and they didn’t compete directly for talent with us anyway. We’ve now living in an era when Stoke City sign top internationals from Bayern Munich, and England is not the only league which is drifting away.

Mitigating circumstances are all fine and well, but that’s the challenge for Celtic. Work smarter, find the untapped scouts, be better than those with more money than they know what to do with.

2016 will bring another title and possibly one or two cups, but as 1 January approaches I’m hopeful the lessons learned in the transfer market since 2014 are put into practice.

Have a fantastic New Year.

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  1. West End of East End on

    CultsBhoy – I’ll give you that one, didn’t see it at the time as I tend to avoid here after a defeat in Europe….

     

     

    Anyone else add to what they think is the post of the year ?

  2. KEVJUNGLE on 31st December 2015 5:05 pm

     

     

    Yir best post (only decent one) yet…….yir still an erse mind :O)

     

     

    All the best to you and yours in New Year.hh

  3. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    LATCHFORD 244

     

     

    You and I sing largely from the same hymn-sheet re how our club is run,but I would be interested in ‘the argument to close all youth and development facilities’

     

     

    That suggestion is not the way forward for Celtic,nor for any other club.

     

     

    Not now,rarely,if ever,ever.

     

     

    Historically,how many successful teams didn’t have a conveyor belt? The only one I can think of is Chelsea,automatic success demanded.

     

     

    My personal opinion is that we are so far down the tubes due to Lawwell’s misguided but immediately predictable coincounting DOF hat that it will take an absolute fortune to put us back where we were six years ago.

     

     

    To put us back where we were twelve years ago will cost us two fortunes.

     

     

    Lawwell’s parsimony has cost us everything that we had before he arrived. I don’t really give a monkey’s how much he is paid-not my problem-but I do give a monkey’s about how much he has cost us.

     

     

    HH and HNY. P

  4. Unlikely predictions for 2016

     

    Sevco become financially stable.

     

    Scottish referee shines at Euros.

     

    Neganon changes blog name to Posanon.

     

    MSM expose new scandal in Govan.

     

    Doncaster and Reagan resign in disgrace.

     

    Aberdeen mount a challenge till April.

     

    Referee apologizes for NOT awarding penalty against Celtic in cup final.

     

    Any others?

  5. Hamiltontim on 31st December 2015 5:12 pm

     

     

    Likewise C, to you and H

     

    God Bless.

     

     

    Regards & Hail Hail

     

    TBM

  6. Off the park, has seen the Fans Forum meetings continue and increased opportunity for dialogue. Whether most of it is meaningful is open to interpretation. – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-5/#comments

     

     

    Do nothing but cause divide between the club and the fans, even in here you have to stick it in, doing your Wee message boy for the CT as usual, any outlet with Celtic attached to it you lot are like a limpet mine clinging on to it, you lot will never be happy, typical uni mob, tied in with Ultra’s, not happy unless there is unrest.

  7. Dexter says BHOYCOTT CELTIC PARK UNTIL THE PLC PAY ALL EMPLOYEES THE LIVING WAGE on

    “It’s not clear why we’re misfiring, or whether we can amend our ways. Throwing more money at the problem may improve things, but the problem is not fundamentally finance, Malmo and Maribor both operate on a fraction of our expenditure”

     

     

    IMHO the problem is pretty clear. It is DOWNSIZING. Malmo and Maribor were not persuing active policies of selling their best players every season to balance books impacted by reducing income from other sources. Downsizing creates an atmosphere of foreboding at the club, amongst players (the height of whose ambition is now to play well enough to be sold to an English club) and fans (whose idea of where the club should be is far removed from where we objectively are (officially 75th in Europe)).

     

     

    RD is a factor alright, but even the best would struggle under the PLC policies. Ditto the coaching and scouting staff.

     

     

    We need a couple of things ASAP. Experience in defence, more big personalities (leaders) and a proven striker to assist LG.

     

     

    RD must now win the treble. However, if Sevco are promoted, I would be seriously concerned about the matches against them next season.

  8. mike in toronto on

    all this talk of pies …. I’m worried my bro may not cook one tomorrow…. so I’m off home to make one …. just in case.

     

     

    will check in later. If I miss anyone, I hope you all have a great new year, and a brilliant 2016!

     

     

    Hail hail

  9. Gerryfaethebrig on

    Just nipped on to wish all of Cqn all the very best for 2016, P67 & the whole team do the hoops proud for all the of the blogs charity work, CRC/Jobo for the great work for wee Shay, not a big New Year person as a family we never have been, all the best to Ronny & the bhoys in 2016, Europe has been a disaster even I can’t find a positive apart from scoring goals, leading in a few games and some of our football has been good in parts, leading Fenerbache 2-0 and cruising, leading in Amsterdam Arena (twice) but never get too up and will never be too down when it comes to the Hoops……. New Year wish … Bring Aiden home, read James F being played up front, McGeady in the Darren O’Dea cup final was unplayable

     

     

    Hail Hail to all

  10. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    BIG-CUP-WINNERS.I may well be the only Celtic supporter who thought we had incredible bad luck in Europe this season there is so little between winning and losing and I believe player error cost us dearly and that for me had a lot to do with not having a settled back four.I think Ronny is well aware of that and will do his best to see we have a settled side for next seasons qualifyers.However,before that he will do his best to guide us to the treble and that for me is as well as we can realistically expect. H.H.

  11. Dexter

     

    Since you doubt Sevxo’s ability to achieve promotion,

     

    What makes you think they will compete with us next year?

     

    The gulf between them and the top half of the SPFL is bigger than the Grand Canyon.

     

    How did they do against St Johnstone?

     

    Or Motherwell in their failure to be promoted?

  12. TONYDONNELLY67 on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 5:23 PM

     

    If anyone is dragging Celtic down its fan forum meetings along with the willing help of the SMSM, two cheeks of the same arse.

     

     

    Can this be the same TD who less than an hour ago was complaining about not being allowed to have an opinion.

     

     

    As many faces as the town clock.

     

    Pages:«12345

     

    LEAVE A REPLY

     

     

    – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-5/#comment-2746080

  13. guy walks into the gallowgate butchers.

     

     

    yes sir how can i help you ?

     

     

    yes please, can i have a steak and kidley ?

     

     

    eh, offcourse sir, buy you mean a steak and kidney pie,

     

     

    aye, thats whit i said,

     

     

    no sir, you actually said “can i have a steak and kidley pie.

     

     

    guy says ……….

     

     

    maw a diddley

  14. BOBBY MURDOCH'S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS on

    TONYDONNELLY

     

     

    I must congratulate you for your support of the people who run our club,regardless of what anyone else thinks of that.

     

     

    Can I ask you your views on the difference between,say,2004 and 2015?

     

     

    A few things may be of importance in your reply,for instance,number of ST holders,how many actually turn up to contribute to match day spend.

     

     

    How many of our 2015 team would matchessly fit in to any of the teams mentioned?

     

     

    How many of those turning up spend the time afterwards asking their pals-wow,did you see that?

  15. quonno

     

    Spin again, it was my opinion on how Celtic are being dragged down, diff from the guy who said it was PL, he gave his, I gave mine, don’t be two quick daftie, try and keep up.

  16. Dexter says BHOYCOTT CELTIC PARK UNTIL THE PLC PAY ALL EMPLOYEES THE LIVING WAGE on

    ‘GG on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 5:27 PM

     

    Dexter

     

     

     

     

    Since you doubt Sevxo’s ability to achieve promotion,

     

     

     

     

    What makes you think they will compete with us next year?

     

     

     

     

    The gulf between them and the top half of the SPFL is bigger than the Grand Canyon.

     

     

     

     

    How did they do against St Johnstone?

     

     

     

     

    Or Motherwell in their failure to be promoted?

     

     

    ——————–

     

     

    GG- I deliberately referred simply to those possible matches- I do not believe they are a challenge to us winning the league, but I do worry that they may win some of the games against us.

     

     

    This opinion is based on some of the horrific results under RD in pressure games. Further, they will be up for it. We, on the other hand, have demonstrated little evidence of having sufficient numbers prepared to expend the necessary application demanded of those privileged to don the hoops.

  17. Tactical genius Rony Deila refuses to play with 2 up front at home against Scottish pub teams as it is not part of his strategy to conquer the Champions League play off rounds …..this would be folly as the team must stick to his high pressing,supremely athletic footballing template,which will ultimately grind down inferior athletes in teams from Scandanavia and Eastern Europe…..and ermmmmmm maybe even Kilmarnock and Motherwell.

     

     

    Meanwhile…….a once ridiculed little Italian tinkerman blows away some of the richest clubs on planet football by playing with…..ermmmmmm…..2 up front.

     

     

    YecouldnaemakeitupCSC

     

     

    Hail Hail and Happy New Year

  18. Can I ask you your views on the difference between,say,2004 and 2015? – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-6/#comment-2746087

     

    Yes you can and I will answer, unlike you I have no problem with the way the club was ran then or now, for the umpteenth time, I back the board all the way, I don’t think they are trying to ruin the club, thay are doing there very best in hard times, and are fighting on many fronts to keep us where we are. We are where we are, and it is what it is, no ones died yet, although during that period other clubs have.

  19. BIG-CUP-WINNERS on

    Jfh

     

     

    Fair enough, I enjoy your posts, and your support of RD.

     

     

    Think you are wrong, but hope I am :-)

  20. A ghuy I know told me he will be joining The Celtic Trust; apparently a poster on CQN persuaded him it is the right thing to do………………..

     

     

    Regards & Hail Hail

     

    TBM

  21. TONYDONNELLY67 on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 5:31 PM

     

    quonno

     

     

     

     

    Spin again, it was my opinion on how Celtic are being dragged down, diff from the guy who said it was PL, he gave his, I gave mine, don’t be two quick daftie, try and keep up.

     

     

    Yep.

     

     

    That’s what we all do here.

     

    As earlier with facetiousness don’t be personal, and when you do, at least get spelling right.

     

     

    – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-6/#comment-2746090

  22. Paul 67 and all on CQN,

     

     

    Wishing you all a Happy New Year with peace, hope and togetherness.

     

     

    Hail, Hail and best wishes for 2016.

  23. THEBARCAMOLE on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 5:39 PM

     

    A ghuy I know told me he will be joining The Celtic Trust; apparently a poster on CQN persuaded him it is the right thing to do………………..

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Regards & Hail Hail

     

     

     

     

    TBM

     

     

    – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-6/#comment-2746095

     

    Great idea, that’s where he will get leadership. They do the thinking for you, and tell you what to do and say, just in case you haven’t a clue.

  24. TONYDONNELLY67 on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 5:40 PM

     

    HAMILTONTIM on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 5:33 PM

     

     

     

     

    Now, now you’re bordering on being personally abusive again.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-6/#comment-2746091

     

     

     

     

    Oh REALY.? You gonny run an tell the teacher like you usually do?

     

     

    A would imagine Hamilton Tim had reely better teacher than Tony.

     

    – See more at: http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/state-of-the-club-report-year-end-2015/comment-page-6/#comment-2746096

  25. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    BIG-CUP-WINNERS. Fella I believe Ronny is the real deal and if he is not crushed under the weight of expectations at Celtic he will lead us to great success.However, the worry is the weight of our expectations will overcome him and he will walk away if he does I believe he will succeed else where.H.H.

  26. Personal abuse & usual ganging up……

     

    Dont understand why fellow tims cant ‘at least be civil’ especially on a blog

     

     

    No be back in 2015 :)))

  27. Tony

     

     

    I’ve never reported anyone on CQN. I want even on when you posted yer nonsense that got you yellow carded.

     

     

    If I recall from reading back it was other posters who called you out.

  28. CultsBhoy can not relate to Celtic Board ambitions on or off the park on

    Aye TD67 / Cato…. Always e pect the unexpected!

  29. TD, I did like this one from you early,

     

     

    TONYDONNELLY67 on 31ST DECEMBER 2015 1:19 PM

     

    The plank in charge of the team, who has lost three domestic games in one Callander year, awe aye riiighhht got ya.

     

     

    ————-

     

     

    one Callander year,

     

     

    thats a lot of trossachs

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