Taken to school, Paul McConville


Celtic’s valiant capitulation last night had a familiar feel to it.  We took the game to Milan, bossed them in many areas while the tie was still close enough to be called a contest, created chances but had no cutting edge and lost heavily, at home, to what is clearly the weakest of four Milan teams we have faced in the last decade.  It was a similar story when Juventus came to Glasgow last season.

Am I the only one who thought it was familiar from stirring European nights of the 80s?  Take on one of the most experience teams in Europe with two out-and-out wingers, inspire for a time but only earn a lesson in how unforgiving the game can be at the top level. Or at least, hope we learned a lesson.

We loved it in the 80s, of course, but it was like going to school when Martin O’Neill arrived and taught us how to win in Europe.  Despite the defeat, the 10 men got it right at home to Barca, and in the home win over Ajax, where we allowed the visitors the majority of possession and territory, but with four minutes on the clock and Celtic playing well last night, I noted the game was “worryingly open”.

In Europe, an open game means defeat. We don’t have the midfield or attack to win playing adventurously. When setup properly, we can defend as well as anyone in Europe, this is our irrefutable strength, play to it.

Paul McConville

The first thing I did when I met Paul McConville at the Columba Club on Friday was dig him up for not being in touch recently.  This gave him an opportunity to wax enthusiastically about the consuming joy of being back on the tools as a solicitor in Glasgow.  He was a man who had arrived exactly where he wanted to be in life.

He was so full of drive, clarity of vision and purpose that it was with utter disbelieve I heard the news of his sudden passing yesterday.

As anyone who read Random Thoughts Re Scots Law knew, he loved his family.  He also loved practicing law and held Albion Rovers in high affection.  He was not, as has been suggested, part of the Celtic family. Had the snake oil salesmen turned up at Celtic Park they would have endured the same forensic analysis from Paul as he applied elsewhere, but he was an important friend and resource to our community, and ultimately our club, during an historically important time.

To most of us he was a unique blogger.  Cheerful, incisive and unrelenting.  He charted the story of Rangers insolvency, administration and liquidation, then picked up the even more complicated events surrounding the phoenix.

When asked on Friday why he had been less industrious recently, specifically covering the leaks from Charlotte Fakes, he conceded he just didn’t have the time anymore; he was back litigating and loving it.

The personal cost of his blogging was often all too clear, he was out there, but Paul managed to retain his determination not to be browbeaten, while enduring the numptites with more good grace and humour than most of us could muster. Before taking up his new role in Glasgow he worked a few minutes walk from me. We collaborated on a number of matters in recent years and marked one auspicious afternoon last year by sharing a bottle of Champagne; a genuinely treasured memory.

The fragility of it all is breathtaking. Our condolences to the McConville family. May he rest in peace.
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  1. Dontbrattbakkinanger


    13:48 on


    27 November, 2013


    Hoopslegend Fraser Forster has the reflexes and agility of ole Shrodinger’s Cat.






    As we know Shrodeinger’s cat may be agile or he may not be agile at any time. However in Fraser Forster when you factor in the Planks Constant you can be more certain which state of cat you’re talking about.




  2. When you add it up,we have spent decent money,not wisely unfortunately .I posted the other day,to spend £2.3 mil on a guy without a specific position in mind is incompetent.IMO

  3. Mr X loves having a "fly kick" on

    Haven’t posted in a long, long time now mainly using Twitter, but still read your lead article every day Paul.



    Just wanted to say how shocked and sorry I was to hear about Paul McConville’s passing.



    Being of similar age, it has got me re-appraising my own life and the fragility of it all.



    May he rest in peace.

  4. Embdae know what time Simple Minds will be on at The Hydro tonight?


    Cue silly answers……might lighten the mood i suppose.HH

  5. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    ole Shrodinger’s cat is also capable of bein’ simultaneously on his line/ not on his line.



    Sign him up.

  6. Turkeybhoy



    Wanyama and Hooper were the cheap options when we bought them. That’s the startegy.



    Spending money wins you games,in general. It’s football, it’s not always as simple as that of course. Somtimes we’ll beat Barcalona and sometimes Morton will beat us.



    But have a look at the value of the squads in the Group we are in this year. Fourth is where you would expect us to finish.



    I’m disapointed but see no value in trying to pin the blame on Players, Management, Board when the reality is we are constrained in how much cash we can spend by our income which is largely dictated by the small league we play in.




  7. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    Embdae know what time Simple Minds will be on at The Hydro tonight?




    Ah dinnae ken, but wee Patsy kensit.

  8. I agree with Paul that we were too open. On hearing the team I was concerned. Plaudits for going for it but ultimately defeat and no points.I don’t think the manager practiced what he preached pre-match. Talk of ignoring their domestic form, wounded animal etc. He then sets up at best 4-2-3-1 against 1 of the most successful clubs ever with 7 european cups in their trophy room. It may have been down to personnel available and form but there was enough there to start with a more solid formation.



    Worrying that despite the attacking line up half our bench was made up of strikers deemed not good enough to start (I realise there’s 7 on the bench but one’s a keeper so wasn’t counting him!)



    Milan should have been given the respect that Barca get when they come to town. I think we gave Ajax even more respect and they are nowhere near the same class.



    Kaka is class despite his problems at Madrid.

  9. Our transfer policy of buying cheap and young will orovide more banguras than hoopers in my opinion. But when oir average spend on a player is around the £2m -£3m mark we should not have used the money on Balde. Now im not having a go at boy and I hope he works out for us, im just concerned that a fee of that size should not be spent on a work in progress.

  10. Auldheid,


    I agree with you abour Forster.Cash in now.With a bit of bravery we could transform this team.The deadwood should be told,to get their agents looking for new clubs.


    Mc Geough,Forrest(sell now while England think he is a talent),Sammi (love him but too inconsistent),Rogic(loan move),Ledley(off the wage bill).Thats 5 midfield players.Leaves us,Brown,Kayal,Mulgrew,Biton,Efe ( Lustig to CH,Mathews to RB),sign Tomlin,try for Gauld.Up front sign a striker,the money coming in would easily cover these.Promote Atajic to first team.A solid looking back 4,3 battlers in the middle,a playmaker,and two good strikers.We could well afford this.Pukki and Derk.Stuck with them I think,unless we are prepared to take a hit.Balde,give him time.

  11. thomthethim



    Seems the old 4:2:4 gets the blame when a defeat occurs and we ignore the wins we have when the same personnel play.



    In our CLAW against Spartak, we were 2:1 down when Neil made one of those so-called bizarre subs and replaced Big Vic with James Forrest, creating just that scenario as both Giorgios and Kris (alongside Hooper) were still on the pitch and Brown and Mulgrew were our central mid pairing. We immediately equalized and then scored a winner with only a straight swop of Ledley for Mulgrew intervening.




    The Moon Bhoys




    “the run up to a ‘big’ game is the happy clappers have the run of the place with positive happy thoughts of what it will be like when we win,



    then when we get beat they run for cover and the mineshafters take over telling us all if you think that was bad its going to get a lot worse,”





    I have seen postings from Sandman, Heaven67, gerald766 and myself in the aftermath of our defeat and I’d count them as happyclappers. No running for cover on that side.



    I also saw the usual stirring pre-match criticism from Kojo pre-match and he was not predicting success.



    However it was predictable that madmitch and aromanonly were on here last night and we do not see or hear from them when things go well. I have respect for posters like Estadio Nacional and Sydney Tim in that they post at all times and not when the agenda suits.



    Would that more were like them.

  12. eddieinkirkmichael on

    Many on here over the months have spoken of how our investment in Lennoxtown and the youth set up will, hopefully, pay dividends.


    Whilst I appreciate that this will take time, the worrying thing for me is that the style of play on offer is so negative and frankly boring to watch.


    I can accept displays like last night as we are a pot 4 team. What concerns me is our overall style of play in domestic games. How we hope to progress, as a team, playing without a creative midfielder is beyond me. We appear to have players who could be classed as creative but they haven’t had regular game time over an extended period to develop their game.


    Someone also mentioned the policy at Swansea and this to me is key, we have to decide what kind of football do we want to see at Celtic Park. Is it the across the midfield down the wing, cross to no one that we are now accustomed to or dare we be more demanding and aspire to being a free flowing attacking team? It’s one thing playing the way we do in Europe but given our wage budget it’s absolutely criminal that we are not a more exciting domestically.

  13. ....PFayr supports WeeOscar on

    Hooper was a proven goalscorer in a league comparable to the SPL



    We may have got him under value ….but he was fit for purpose

  14. We have been playing twist or stick for a number of years now – the answer from the board is ALWAYS stick.



    During the summer we did not twist despite the fortune raised from the sale of our spine. It was the real test of the board. Money banked and qualified for the Champions league and we sat on a squad without strikers.



    Unfortunately that is where we are and this is where we will stay.



    I am not advocating Sevco type stupidity , but just something to get the crowd onboard.


    Who was the last player we signed that anyone had heard of before he arrived ?



    Last night the fans were as flat as I’ve ever seen before a Champions League game. There was a sense of predictability about the whole night.



    Now the manager has to do some sticking or twisting.


    We have an asset in our goalkeeper who has a value that will only go one way from here – down. He is an incredible shot stopper but is probably the poorest keeper I’ve seen in a long time at commanding his box and dealing with cross balls. On top of that he does not learn from his mistakes. We have lost goals scored from cross balls this season in exactly the same manner 3 times. Nial McGinn in Aberdeen, away to Karagany and last night. On every occasion the striker was within 4 yards of the goal and was unchallenged by the keeper. Neil needs to decide if he is going to cash in or keep him, but for me the problems at the back are all due to his inability to command his 6 yard box never mind 18 yard box, and his communication with every defence he has worked with has been non existent. Defenders love the noise of a keeper roaring “KEEPER” and taking control. It just never happens.



    Neil also needs to think about shaking the whole team strategy. We play what I call crab football – side to side eventually crossing to no centre forward with any heading ability. This tactic is fundamentally flawed. Plus the lack of game time in the SPFL for younger talent is just stupid.



    The main excitement this year has been Efe breaking from the back. We just don’t hurt teams through the middle. This team is a snorefest.



    I am terrified about Hearts – it is very possible that we could lose a goal and fail to score as I cannot remember the last time a striker scored.



    Lustig and Izzy were great last night, Virgil was good but apart from that we were not at the races against a Milan team that were there for the taking – the time it took them to celebrate the goals showed how relieved they were.



    So stick or twist ?



    Board – Invest or lose the fans.


    Neil – Keeper sold or declining value.


    Neil – Style of play or lose the fans.


    Neil – develop the youth or bore the fans to death with the current team ?



    The fans singing “Let the people sing” on 87 minutes last night was incredible far far more than the custodians deserved. The board are closer to the edge of losing the support than they realise. Failure to challenge the SFA on the Sevco fiasco, failure to support a living wage, lack of investment when we have the funds all show that they don’t care what we think.



    It really is time to stick or twist.



    Sort it out now.




  15. SoT



    “Glib ole Albert is suggesting that if [for example ] you are depressed as a consequence of drinking too much then it is probably better not to deal with that depression by getting drunk one more time.”



    As i assume that you are not suggesting the team were drunk and depressed before or during the game, I’d still need some guidance as to how the quote is apt to last night.



    What failed pattern, specifically, are you seeing?

  16. Ger57 @ 13:22


    How do you know how often PL and NFL speak to DD? Mr Grace?? Pure speculation and troll like. Try and say something sensible if you want to contribute.




    I don’t know how often PL and NL speak to DD but I was commenting on the possibility of them having a meeting to talk about team re-building as suggested by WGS. I suggested this meeting won’t happen as DD has bigger fish to fry than Celtic plc. This may be speculation but it is based on the follwing facts:-



    1. He is a director and never attends board meetings


    2. He is the major shareholder and never attends club AGMs


    3. His attendance on a match day at CP is as rare as Haley’s comet.


    4. When the team was gubbed by Ross County in the SC Semi-final in NL’s first big test as caretaker manager, he was at the Augusta Masters as a guest of then hun chairman, Alistair Johnston


    5. He preferred to play in a pro-am golf tournament at St. Andrews when the team was playing hertz at tynecastle (distance 50 miles)


    6. He considers Sevco to be the same club as the deid-huns and looks forward to their “return”.



    I could be wrong of-course and I’d be interested to learn when you think this team re-build meeting between DD, PL and NL will take place.



    Finally, who are you to question who can and cannot contribute to this blog?

  17. SFB,



    I was trying to be funny, i just seen this dudes name beside Ciprian Marica who is meant to be going to Arsenal or down south. I was looking for footage on him earlier. I aint got a clue who he is either.



    My main point is we need to re build properly and maybe not take as may dear punts like Bangura and Balde and maybe combine in future and buy a decent player on a higher fee.

  18. Still gutted after last night. Have read most of the pages and generally agree with a lot of the musings.


    I was intrigued by Neil’s comment, “We will be back again trying next season.”


    Let’s think about that for a minute. Assuming we lose without scoring in the Nou Camp ( a reasonable assumption I believe, given that Barca will not wish Milan to overtake them), we will finish rock bottom, miles behind the third place team, and have scored in ONE of six games. Our two goals came from a penalty and a sclaffed deflection. We have leaked ten goals without reply to Italian teams in two seasons. Last night’s debacle could have been a lot worse, had Milan their first choice team available. South of Tunis quotes the Italian press, “The opposition were embarrassingly compliant, with defending worthy of the minor leagues.”


    So, what now? Neil assumes we will win the league. O.K. Fair enough. Let’s go along with that. Unfortunately, he seems to have forgotten that we have to negotiate qualifying rounds shortly after Izzy, Efe, Sammi et al come back from Brazil. Will we even be seeded? We are now cannon fodder, reduced to making up the numbers. We barely made it past Elfsborg and Karagandy, and, unless we start planning now, I think we fail to qualify for the group stages, especially if we are not seeded.


    So why do we need to start planning now? Many posters on this blog have their coaching licences from Largs, but you don’t need to have a coaching qualification to observe the following: Next season, Kris, Charlie and Joe will be slower than they are now, which is ponderous. Brown is incapable of developing self discipline, a football brain, creativity, or scoring ability. Kayal is a headless chicken, made of glass. We have no one capable of scoring goals at the CL level.


    So what do we have? We have a solid core of defenders, Matthews, Lustig, Virgil, Efe, Izzy. I think Forster is retrievable, if we can persuade him he must be claiming these crosses and corners, by soaring like Michael Jordan and yelling “Keeper’s!” He will learn that no one will get in his way.


    We need to see how Irvine, George, Herron, Atajic, Fraser will adapt. Fisher seems to have taken to the first team like a duck to water. Honestly, apart from that, we don’t have much. Neil has a blind spot for Sammi and Forrest, who are both maddeningly inconsistent. I would give Boerrigter, Rogic and Biton a run. If Stokes, Pukki and Balde are good enough, why were they not played last night?


    And then there is Neil. I don’t know if he personally picked Lassad, Miku, Bangura et al. What I do know is that we are wasting time and money on players that will never be good enough, and that we have been thoroughly outcoached in places like Karagandy.


    We seem incapable of improving our crossing ability or our threat from corners. We had nine corners last night and never troubled Abiati once. We have three varieties of corner: A. Hit the first defender. B. Hit directly to goalkeeper (Charlie excelled at this last night). C. Blooter it past the far post, where we never have a man. If we can see this, why can’t Neil? On the plus side, we have finally stopped hurling throw-ins up the line to the opposition.


    There appears to be some general agreement on this blog on what we need in January. If we do not address lack of pace and creativity in midfield and the abysmal lack of a stiker, due to parsimony, then I really fear for next season.



  19. Contrast Kayal to when he first came and now !!



    What a difference he s a shadow of the player he was. Shame !!

  20. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on

    As we recruit by committee its inappropriate to apportion all the blame towards Lenny. We have came a long way since Sion but I feel we are back there again due to a complete lack of fire power.



    I dont think Lenny will shoulder the blame. The five year plan is based entirely on a Celtic managers shelf life. I.e no manager can tolerate continually rebuilding teams and if Lenny does then he is a yes man. Its why Wim, Martin and Gordon left and why Tony was ultimately fired with small descrepancies amongst them.



    Now although I entirely agree with being shrewd in the market I believe the board to be far more interested in the financial results than the product on the park.



    I have made tory cabinet comparisons before. Nothing to do with politics and everything to do with spin. We become more parsimonious the further we go up the ladder. Which I find galling.



    Additionally the creative accountancy is another aspect which reeks of conservatism.



    Its all about the money as the recent voting at the AGM confirmed.



    Better to get beat with a strategy that keeps everyone …well the majority happy anyway including million pound a year employees happy than improving the team year upon year and living and demonstrating to the world our ideals.



    For me that starts with the RUTHLESS annhilation of the masonic blazer brigade at the SFA



    Or is it just me ?



    I now have to consider ending my personal boycott of the domestic scene but until I see some substantial change off the park then thats me until July next year.




  21. Swanseabhoy.We are not constrained by the league we play in.That income is what it is.We are making money on the sale of players.That has to be put back into the team.Not every season,but when we sell,get like for like.The CL money should provide us with excess running costs money..Even in the transfer market,we do not have to spend every penny we take in.EG,Wanyama,Hooper.We took in £17.5 million.if we had spent say £8 million on two as good as possible replacements,we are £9.5 million up.The policy we have now is not maintaining the quality.We are downgrading at every turn.We can always pick up a diamond Like VVD,but sometimes you have to spend.

  22. Afternoon Timland from a cold jun free mountain valley.



    I see there are some saying we have to pay a premium for players to come to scotland, or that players won’t come to scotland.



    Complete rubbish imo.



    Someone posted earlier, sorry can’t remember who, about Basel, beaten Chelsea home and away, and took in about 6 mill more than they spent.



    The players are out there, we just need to find them, no easy task, but they are there.



    Spain is full of players who are 4K a week, they would jump at the chance of doubling their wages.



    Go find them JP



    Off oot.




  23. To me a punt on a player would be like the money we have paid for that new iceland guy etc… in the hundreds of thousands.



    If we start spending 2.5 million on players i’d expect them to be starters and i think that is probably what’s frustrating most supporters.



    The fact we spent some sort of fee on Pukki, Balde, Bangura and none of them feature.

  24. good afternoon cqn


    condolences to the family of Paul McConville,never met the guy but read all his blogs,so young


    It is in a time like this,that family and friends will be important to the McConville family.

  25. at the start of the season we all knew we were a weaker side than last year.


    Virgil has proven to be a good addition.


    we have not replaced victor


    and we have been very short upfront ( no center forward) you have players who can play up there and do a job here and there but a goal scorer is what we need .


    The Captain has to have along hard look at what he has done ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,


    Zonal marking will get spoke to death ……..we dont lose goals blah blah ,,,,,space has never scored a goal in any game…….. blah blah……


    But when a cross comes into the box, your keeper doesnt need to run out to take it……..but he knows by the flight if its going to be inside his 6 yard box……..and if its in the air for that long …..its his ball to take…….

  26. tamrabam@13.45



    An excellent, thoughtful post. I will respond to two comments.



    “It is also just as important that the amount we earn continues to increase, otherwise we spend less and less and generally can expect to become poorer on the pitch”



    It is hard for me to see the avenue for increasing revenue. On the one hand, we have a higher probability of earning CL cash by qualifying for the Group Stages but we have a likelihood that our crowd are not enthused by a stroll to a league title. Which club is going to raise its game sufficiently to provide a season long challenge and keep our fans interested in a title that is not a foregone conclusion?



    Sadly, I see only a change of league as a possible solution.



    “I have never came across a team yet who have sold their way to success”



    I don’t think that Ajax, Porto or Lyon (or Celtic) saw selling, per se, as the route to success. It is, in fact a hurdle to be negotiated on the way to success. If you rear or buy talented players, they will be cherry picked by the teams from the cash rich leagues.



    It was inevitable that Porto would lose Hulk and Ajax would lose Ibrahimovic and Snejder. They did not spend all of the transfer fee earned on one direct replacement. They sought to use money gained from say a 10 rated forward to buy a 8 rated defender and 8 rated midfielder to upgrade and hope they would develop in time to the 10 level.



    It is a circle that Ajax, Porto and Lyon have failed to square too. We cherry pick the best from the SPL or more impoverished markets like Africa, Israel and Poland. In turn we are cherry picked by EPL clubs and can be, if they choose, by some Spanish, Italian, German and Championship clubs with EPL parachute money.



    Again, until we are in a better environment no upgrade coach is going to buck the market. The coaches that developed and bought good talent at Porto, Lyon and Ajax, are also likely to be headhunted and leave.



    That is the world we live in

  27. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    ‘I am not seeing the immediate attraction here.’



    -you sound just like the ole Galactico bein’ shown round the Dennistoun tenement.

  28. Hi Paul67,



    Heartfelt and warming commiserations to Paul McConville, I left my thoughts and condolences on the last post but would like to extend it to yourself and other CQNers who were friends of Paul’s.



    I’d guess you both earned the Champers – must have been very refreshing.



    Hail Hail

  29. Turkeybhoy




    “Have to disagree with you.Non scoring forwards have been our problem all season.When we have to rely on,not particularly good goalscoring midfielders and defenders to score for us,we are in deep trouble.Not exactly a Lampard amongst them.”




    I was not referring, of course, to our season long issues. i was merely referencing that the two defeats to Milan could have been reversed by clean strikes from Brown, Kayal, Mulgrew and Van Dijk, when the much vaunrted man to man, touch-tight, Italian defenders actually were out of position.



    I agree and have stated my agreement, as has Neil Lennon, with the view that we are not balanced up front. No out and out Poacher on our books at all just now, at any level. We have a collection of playmakers and target men but no Hooper type player.

  30. It was New Year’s Day and I sneaked up to ayebroke, I somehow convinced my mother I was visiting a school friend so with my good coat and scarf on I headed out, around my waist was tied my Celtic scarf.



    It was an awful experience as we were gubbed 0-4 in what was to be Pat Crerand’s last game, in fact a shot from bette davis deflected off Paddy into the net, I waited until the bitter, no pun intended, end.



    When I arrived at my aunt’s that night for dinner my da said “you were at that game” “aye” I replied and if we hadn’t lost the way we did it would have been a clout tae the back of the heid as I was forbidden to go to these games.



    My uncle then asked if I would go tomorrow, Clyde at home, and I replied that I had no money to which he put his hand in his pocket and gave me the train fare and entry money.



    The next morning I awoke to a blanket of snow and apart from an away win at Pittodrie, 5-1, the following week and another away win at Brockville, 2-0, in the Scottish Cup before the month was out football shut down until March.



    Somehow we stumbled to the Scottish Cup Final with reserve centre half John McNamee replacing attacking right half Pat in the team?????



    After a credible 1-1 draw in which a young Jimmy Johnstone starred for us we were once again humiliated 0-3 in the replay in which Jinky was replaced by inside right Bobby Craig???? And when the 3rd goal went in the Celtic end emptied with the huns chanting “easy, easy” a well know boxing chant of the day.



    BTW Bobby wisnae a bad wee player scoring 13 goals in 21 appearances but was gone by the August of that year to St Johnstone in a swap deal which saw forward Bobby Young, brother of the then reserve full back Ian, come tae us, most Celtic supporters may never heard of him as he didnae play one first team game for us. BTW wee Bobby Craig moved to Toronto and was a founding member of the Toronto Celtic Supporters Association.



    That summer we also signed Paddy Turner from Morton who made his debut in another 0-3 thumpin at CP, 14 games and 1 goal later and he was for the Joe the Toff.



    A couple of months later and Paddy was replaced by Hugh Maxwell, 8 games and 2 goals later and Hughie’s off, fortunately for us Big Jock had arrived and he was replaced with Joe McBride.



    The biscuit tin mentality and interference from the board had taken its toll on the team and the support.



    Roll forward 8 years and I for the first and only time left a game early, after the 4th goal went in for the harry wraggs I was off as I was terrified our 7-1 record was in danger. I had went up in a supporters bus but made my way home by public transport, by the time I reached Queen Street Station Kenny had pulled 1 back and I’ve since been led to believe that we had created enough chances in the 2nd half to win it.



    We had 3 very good strikers in Kenny, Lou Macari and Harry Hood in the team that day but Jock disappointed with the wastefulness of our strike force went out and bought Dixie Deans, by the end of that season we had won the double as well as exiting the EC in penalties after extra time.



    As it is we can’t do what Jock did, we do have in about 5 weeks another transfer window, so far we have big Bertie already in the door and bang bang on his was back but as far as I can see that’s it. We do not have the luxury of European football to offer to prospective strikers or any other players so we either look to home grown players, our own youth or just grin and bear it.



    BTW the 4 young lhads we have out on loan should stay there for the season rather than sit on the bench or in the stand; furthermore other youngsters such as Dylan should also be looking at loans.

  31. Discussion here along the lines of



    I look at it from the point of view that the current dross that is playing up front for Celtic are keeping Balde out the team.



    The manager picks the team. Perhaps he feels that Balde being new to Scotland the language et al doesn’t want to be exposed too often at this stage to the general lack of encouragement players get when they aren’t an instant success. Let’s face it many were bemoaning Mikeal Lustig as a waste in the beginning and he was an international player who spoke English and could handle it. I feel these instant judgements are far too hasty in almost all cases. We all benefit from encouragement but Celtic crowds are often unforgiving in the beginning. I speak as one who saw Bobby Lennox Yogi Hughes Bobby Murdoch Stevie Chalmers and Billy Mc Neill make their debuts and remember well the Jungle verdicts on their prospects and the groans accompanying whatever mistakes they made as they developed.

  32. WGS


    14:46 on


    27 November, 2013



    On a certain level I think you’re correct but then I think about the endless debates about a £5M being guaranteed CL level.



    Now I ask you would a £5M striker be considered a punt for any of the teams in our CL group? Maybe not Ajax but I not the last time they signed a striker was season 11/12 when they paid £3.5M for 21 yr old Kolbeinn Sigthórsson from AZ Alkmaar.



    He’s now valued at £4M with a roughly 1 goal in 2 appearances rate since he signed.



    Danny Hoesen the striker that has scored in the CL for them was signed to the youth team last season for £440k and promoted to the full team this season.

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