Teach them how to win the league with style and within budget


I wasn’t at the 4-2 game against Oldco on 21 May 1979, when “10 men won the league, tra-la-la-la-la.”  Martin42 is still dealing with the consequences of going without me, but I endured the 0-3 defeat 20 years later that saw the title go to Ibrox.

In the intervening 19 years the authorities in Scotland have done their best to ensure we do not have a potential league winning game between Celtic and either of the Rangers group of clubs, but here we are.  There may never be another opportunity.

That Celtic team in season 1998-99 started poorly with new manager, Jo Venglos, working among one or two strong personalities in the dressing room, but by the springtime we were flowing and a title challenge was on.  When we met Newco on 2 May, a win would only give us an outside chance of the title.

Then came the news that we would play with a rookie, Scott Marshall.  The result wasn’t Scott’s fault, but the chance added a pressure to a defence which already had Stephane Mahe, for some of the game, anyway.  We could not handle the pressure.  Oldco stuck to task and won comfortably.

This was a time when titles in Scotland were decided by sheer brute force.  David Murray’s Rangers’ aggregate income for the four seasons which followed Celtic’s title win in 1998 was £180m – but they spent £282m, an average loss per season over four years of £25m.

The Rangers way of doing business was working.  It delivered titles and denied you and me football success.  There were many reasons to dislike how they did business.  Liquidation would take another 13 years, but the consequences of financial irresponsibility were always inevitable.

Newco will walk into Celtic Park on Sunday with their own version of Scott Marshall, Jak Alnwick, who has made just two senior appearances (no clean sheets) since arriving in Glasgow 18 months ago.  We need to make sure he endures a torrid afternoon.

After watching Graeme Murty earn two draws at Celtic Park I have a bit of respect for what he can do there.  He should not be underestimated, few managers arrive for their third visit undefeated, but the man is so embattled right now, his ability to prepare a team must be significantly impaired.

By contrast, Brendan Rodgers gave a tactical masterclass in the recent games at Ibrox and Hampden, costing Murty any chance of securing the Newco manager’s job long term.  For Brendan, Sunday is all about getting the job done as early as possible, before preparing the squad for the cup final, which is only three weeks away.

I know it’s greedy to ask for too much when we are within touching distance of a second successive treble, considering we only won two in 48 years before last season, but I really want this one.  Let’s do it for everyone who was at Celtic Park on 2 May 1999, or who lived through the years when David Murray and Dave King sat on an Oldco board which lost £35.3m with a turnover of only £44.8m.  Contemporary times show that some lessons cannot be taught too often to those who refuse to learn.

The same people are strutting around our game with the same sense of entitlement.  Show them how to win the league with style and within budget, Celtic.

Raffle to play in an 11-a-side game at Celtic Park, closes 15:00 today, Friday 27th

An incredible opportunity to play on the hallowed turf at Celtic Park around the end of the current season 2017-18, in Club sponsor Intelligent Car Leasing’s match.

You will be provided with complimentary Celtic kit and receive the full match-day experience including arrival through the front door, access to the dressing room and proudly walking down the tunnel to enter the famous field of play.

Both squads will be managed by a former Celtic player. Date 16 May, 11:00 kick off. All monies raised will be donated to Celtic FC Foundation, a registered Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (number SC024648).

To enter the raffle, make a minimum donation of £5 to the Foundation at this MyDonate page.  Then send your donation confirmation email to this address: celticquicknews@gmail.com

The opportunity to play on Celtic Park is just beyond words.  I did it a few years ago, the memories will live forever, as will the photographs.  The experience of preparing in the dressing room, as so many greats have done before, was fabulous.

You can enter for yourself, or gift the prize to someone you know aged 18 or over. Competition closes in just a few hours at 15:00, so enter now!.

Good luck!

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  1. Sorry wrong issues being reported there, almost feel like SMSM. The three issues to be resolved are:



    1. Jimmy Bell to lie prostrate before Lourdes Gerrard proclaiming “I am your Fenian servant.”


    2. Jimmy Bell to wear a green suit to work every day.


    3. Jimmy Bell to declare allegiance to the Pope.

  2. Pog


    I will be amazed if that move comes to fruition. More moonbeams from Govania I think.




  3. Pog


    Match baw was safely stowed away by then ;)))



    16 roads


    The boy Morgan looks a player, rarely see players from Scotland so strong on both feet.




  4. Zero sleeps till Hunskelping day…..massive implications….just do it Celtic ;-))







  5. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    You never give me your money



    You only give me your funny papers



    And in the middle of negotiations



    You break down



    I never give you my number



    I only give you my situation



    And in the middle of investigation



    I break down.

  6. See when ye cannae sleep what does your mind turn to? Are they like mine?



    It’s common knowledge among the cognoscenti (of whom I am but a humble messenger) that far from being some fixed vision or promise dictated by The Bible, Talmud, Qu’uran, etc the great gift of the ever-after is ours to choose and unsurprisingly there are as many after-lives as there are dreams and hopes.



    That’s right we get to choose how we spend eternity and having thought about it for so many decades I can assure you of this, I will NOT be queuing up to enter a Heaven, Nirvanha, Valhalla or whatever name you prefer, that consists of a common, boring, old cloud infested molly coddled community of pristine souls floating around, dressed in brilliant white ankle length nightgowns, gleaming polo mint overhead, tinkling on harps while praising, adoring, worshipping and avoiding low flying angels whose only purpose as far as I can see is to take on the mantle of Rock Steady Stewards, show you where the toilets are, film you in case offensive singing breaks out and make sure that if you want a fag, you nip outside the gates for a drag.



    I can think of absolutely nothing more soul crushingly exasperating.



    The utter tedium of an eternal yawn, that possibly would even suggest attractions in being burnt in screaming agony for time without end. Comfortable? Possibly not. But it couldn’t be boring, nor would you likely to be caught having a surreptitious fag.



    The simple, undeniable fact of oblivion (and I shall quote my source shortly) is that we all get to choose whatever celestial reality we wish for, possibly something completely different (@copyright Monty Python) but such that each of us thinks that we are all in the same sketch.



    “f****n eejit!!!”



    “Who said that?”



    Anyway, yer wrang! This isn’t a product of my aberrant mind. My source is impeccable with a 100% track record and with unique access to both sides of the terminal veil – Let me introduce…………..



    ….The Grim Reaper …(well my Grim Reaper, because we also get to choose not only our eternity, but also the ferryman/woman who despatches from this realm and delivers us into the next).



    In my case my nemesis turned out to wear a silky (but traditionally hooded) full length semi-transparent chemise, woven with a taste of emerald hoops, coincidently with a melodic four leaf clover on her breast, and the green and white across her chest….enough of that, but what a way to go.(She also has a wee unobtrusive St Andrew’s cross tattoo…but its location will forever remain our secret….the way she can make that undulate …..wow!)



    **If I could just make an observation here…You don’t have to wait until you feel the onset of rigor mortis ….choose your partner early, that way you get used to foibles, sense of humour, faults and so on……BUT CHOOSE WISELY…you cannot change your mind….The source of all misery in this world is from those who have picked a reaper for life and then decided they preferred an updated model…trust me you will end up in Limbo…..Oh and learn to dance together**



    Me and…. (oh let’s call my femme fatale ‘the slabbery wummin’)….the slabbery wummin throughout the years developed a partnership which at first tentative and suspicious evolved into a hot and sweaty bolero battle pas de deux.



    With each traipse our timing approached perfection.



    First she would step back into the shadows or into the glare of the strobe and then re-emerge with a smile, pirouette and her stock in trade (all Reapers come with one of these) ……..a swinging blade; Of course I would not only be expecting it I would be prepared.



    As a smile crossed my lips she would realise that victory would not come easy for that very morning I would have passed the ultimate test of survival ….I had put my socks on standing up!



    Now she would find herself coloured by doubt as I swivelled, bent, and leaped like a cossack, locking her breathlessly in a deadly and I have to admit erotic embrace. Even then she wouldn’t give up, pulling herself away from the mingling of our sweat as exhausted I would slump to the floor, my own resolve almost broken.



    In triumph she would swing her lithesome hips like a dervisher and with a whoop of triumph, the curved steel blade would again descend, its honed glint homed on that mysterious connection between body and self, the coup de mort anticipating my final “aaaagggghhhh!!”



    As I felt the nighing end, not in fear but resignation I would whisper one last time (as in one last time for the thousandth time) my final dribble into the ocean of utter keech that the world and all its languages have managed to produce …



    “We’ll continue this discussion when we meet up on the other side of the veil….hopefully it won’t be too hot”



    But then the blade’s terminal draught would rekindle the memory and triumph of the socks; time would freeze and shock a wide eyed stare as I would once more announce



    “Oops, haud yer horses jezabel, Ah’ve Jist remembered somethin Ah need tae say….”



    “Aw Gawd, FFS” she would rasp “will ye get an effin move on!!”



    But even I have to admit that as the years of tripping the light fantastic have progressed that wind of finality grows ever stronger and of course the inevitable always wins (unless of course it is the name of the odds on favourite in the 3.30 at Ayr with my money on the saddle beside the jockey).



    I know that one night the dance will be ‘ladies’ choice” and that morning I won’t have been able to put my socks on standing up. That night the jig will end with the scythe hitting the mark and it will be a merciful end to our final performance.



    The exit stage left will lead barefooted to that big Ticket Office in the sky.



    “Can I have an eternal season card please, oh and stick yer harp, I want an electric guitar, trumpet, drums and a moothie” and then I will stride along that divine Janefield Street, strumming, drumming, blowing, belting out and giving it laldy with …..



    “Open up them pearly gates… Open up them pearly gates… Open up them pearly gates for me….Alleluia…luia”.



    Anyway that’s the sort of thing that I ponder on when I cannae sleep.



    I just thought I would share it.



    Hail Hail




  7. Yer some mhan Matt – longtime no see. That was a great wee read, you@ve got a unique mind and a unique way with words, more power to your pen/keyboard. How are you keeping? Must pop in to Sharkeys for a beer or two,all the best. Hail Hail Hebcelt

  8. Morning Hebcelt.



    I’m doing really well and have a final adventure planned for over the cusp of this year and next for about four months. This will be the final adventure as my knees start to creak and insurance companies refuse to cover an auld git, an auld brain and a bagful of dreams that Freud would baulk at.



    I always have a quick scan across the blog so whenever you fancy a wee jaunt into Sharkey’s intellectual corner, just let me know. I’ll clear a stool and fill a pint for you.



    Hope all is well with you and yours.



    Hail Hail




  9. 50 shades of green on

    Morning Tims.



    Today is the day…




    ♹♹♹♹♹♹♹ arrives






    So with that in mind I hope our PR7 starts




  10. Good morning all . Matt , that was a worth the read, as always. Is it to much to ask that if we get a pass through the pearly gates , that there’s a good boozer, that serves a nice pint, has good tunes on the jukebox, an easy on the eye barmaid & good company to share these delights with ?

  11. It seems Stevie G . isn’t doing enough research into the place of his next appointment. Just win today Celtic , please. Preferably by at least a couple and with some style, but if that’s being a tad greedy, just win . Please. Catch some of you good guys in Coias . Tilll then. HH

  12. ANGELGABRIEL…(FFS wae a handle like that you should know :) )



    Anyway, I gather that only one thing lies outside the realm of the possible…Try as THEY might , plead as THEY plead….THEY cannot win the Big Cup…or The Big Chalice as I believe it is called in my eternity.



    In my youth the definition of impossible was described as ‘sticking yer bum out the bathroom windae and then running down the stairs and throwing stones at it”. The Reaper tells me that even that is possible, but when I asked her about the Big Chalice paradox she just sharpened her scythe. :)



    Hail Hail




  13. Goooooooood Morning CQN


    Celtic go make it 7 heaven ?


    Your playing a 6 year old team, to make it 7



    Been lying here listening to Liam McG with my grandson Jude, and he’s full of smiles ??


    Hope you all have a happy day



    Hail Hail

  14. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Well a big game today if we win we clinch the league I believe it will be very different from our 4-0 victory.The Rangers pride has been badly hurt and if they have any pride left at all I would expect a clugging match.They cannot match us for football so a physical match is there best chance and as I have said before over 90 minutes any side is capable of picking up a win so I am not expecting an easy game and I hope Brendan and the Bhoys are right up for the game I know we the Celtic supporters are up for it and we will play our part Come on you bhoys in Green Glasgows Green and White. H.H.

  15. NO MORE SLEEPS and time to FOCUS.


    Today, let us Rejoice, be Glad and stay Safe.


    Excited wee Bhoy feeling. Better try to eat something ;-)

  16. Matt Stewart, tremendous read. To paraphrase Jobo, so glad “This is (nae) the day”. Grim Reapie eat yet heart oot. H H

  17. !!Bada Bing!! on

    RANGERS defender Declan John is set to miss Sunday’s Old Firm clash after breaking a hand in training.



    John’s injury has opened the door to Andy Halliday being handed an Old Firm reprieve a fortnight after his Hampden horror show.



    Surely Forrest or Paddy can exploit this fud…

  18. Good morning good ghuys from a sunny Garden of God



    Well my friends the time has come


    Let’s raise the roof and have some fun





    D. :)

  19. Let’s hope that the voices of the lads in the Green Brigade have finally broken.



    I mean sometimes it’s like listening to the Vienna Boys choir (without the pitch) singing ‘There once was a lonely Goatherd’ to the accompaniment of a whistling kettle.



    Just loosen those knickers and let the Basso Profundo ring out….oh and please please ditch the drum…I’ve heard better melody from the bins being emptied and to be honest I prefer my tinnitus. Lets get a few Violins, Cellos, Trumpets and let the arias ring out….maybe a chorus of…. ‘OOH AAH OP_ER_A’!!



    Remember lads a bit more Paul Robeson and a bit less Tiny Tim. (No offence to our eponymous resident)



    Right that’s it.. Shower, Socks on standing up and a pleasant stroll through Bridgeton with an exchange of friendly banter and rivalry. :)




    Hail Hail




  20. Enjoy your day Bhoys. My lhad and his pal from Leicester will be there to cheer on the Celts and hopefully see the title clinched at Paradise. Stay safe all those going to the game. HH