The beating of Barca, II. This time it’s Tony.

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Where do we start discussing last night?  Perhaps the end of the night.  There was joy in abundance, not only inside Celtic Park, but in the streets surrounding the game and in a hundred thousand homes across the world.  This joy manifest itself into a great sense of community.  That performance brought tears, hugs, spontaneous jumping up and down, and not only from Celtic fans.  Messages have poured in from fans of other SPL clubs and beyond.

This is what great sport can do for people.

Brother Walfrid has excellent timing.  He managed to arrange our kick-off meeting to coincide with match day four of the Champions League group stage.  Those of us who attended the anniversary celebrations on Tuesday were reminded what Celtic is all about, the best team in the world were in Glasgow waiting to play, the fairy tale script was written, but could it be delivered?

It’s the details which are most impressive.  Mikael Lustig looked like he could play in any team in any league.  He was comfortable and composed throughout.  Adam Matthews, deputising for an injured former Player of the Year, played out of position flawlessly.  I watched him struggle at left back on his Celtic Park debut in a friendly against Wolves last year; it defies explanation how far he has progressed.

Please forget about Victor’s goal, it will only detract from his incredible midfield performance.  His composure, skill and assertiveness troubled Iniesta and Messi all game.  This was all the more impressive given the absence of captain, Scott Brown.

Georgios Samaras was crucial for most of the evening.  He was the one player Barca seemed afraid of, although a lack of training caught up with him before he was subbed.

I’ll not burden Tony Watt publicly with the comparison I made of him earlier in the season but he possesses an impressive array of attributes: upper body strength, pace-with-the-ball and a nose for goal.  I’m tempted to say he will continue to improve but, to what level?  Without injuries to Hooper, Lassad and Forrest it’s unlikely he would have enjoyed as much time last night.  Sometimes Fortune Favours the Celtic.

All of Europe would have been impressed with Fraser Forster last night, dubbed La Grand Muralla, the Big Wall, by a Spanish newspaper.  He will play for England, so too with Kelvin Wilson if he maintains this season’s form.

The only man with a problem today is Neil Lennon.  Tactically the two games against Barcelona have been as accomplished as any I have witnessed.  Neil needs to know how to follow that in Lisbon. I’ve no idea.

Happy Birthday Celtic!

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  1. Jungle Jim

     

    13:13 on

     

    8 November, 2012

     

    ….and another thing. Sammi , IMO, was below par last night yet he received a rousing appreciation for his contribution as he was subbed. That just shows the effect Neil Lennon has had on this special group of players. A short while back, Sammi was derided by many.

     

     

    JJ

  2. Still on cloud 9 – Thanks for yesterday’s blog Paul67, it set the tone for the day perfectly

     

     

    What a great time to be a Celtic fan. HH

  3. Tony Watt and Vic67 – 2 Celtic legends in the making!

     

     

    …and all the others who played last night!

     

     

    If Barca paid £/€18 million (?) for Alex Song how much are these 2 worth?!

     

     

    HH!!

  4. Totally off topic but….

     

     

    Any spare tckts for Christy Moore at the barras tomorrow?

     

     

    What a team!

  5. Philvis, from previous.

     

     

    Well we’ve always know them as Huns without the bus fares.

     

     

    When sevco reduced prices it made the games more accesable to the mini huns.;)

  6. Happy days indeed.

     

     

    Was like a schoolboy, perched in front of TV recording it on my phone. Poor iPhone has no room left.

     

     

    HH all.

  7. A few Years back Comical Ali told us how Iraq was beating the hell out of the yanks, just as the Tanks rolled past behind him, jump forward to last night, Sandy Jardine ” Celtic will never be as big as The Rangers”…. The best comic timing in years !!!!!

  8. DownForSam

     

     

    from last thread,

     

    you should get it on rte player through rte website,

     

     

    they usually show all programmes from the day before

     

     

    Hail Hail

  9. philvisreturns on

    Geordie Munro – One of the things that I’ve never liked about the Salt N Sauce Sevcoites is that they’ll talk about “the ugly sisters” or “the bigot brothers” from one side of their mouths, while calling you a fenian so-and-so from the other.

     

     

    Sleekit Salt N Sauce Sevco Supporters. (thumbsup)

  10. I will need a quick kip after work, (shareholder’s tie on), before rewatching the game again for a forth time. First live at Paradise, then twice last night.

     

    It is truly amazing being a Celtic supporter.

     

    I remember Lisbon, but was only a boy so don’t know if I felt this good. The Juve game was probably more exciting, but last night, mhan, just awesome.

     

     

    EC67

  11. CultsBhoy loves being 1st forever & ever on

    Tony Watt….

     

     

    I’m more interested in him than any of the other heroes who played last night.. Why?

     

     

    Well I guess he’s less likely to leave in January than any other player in the team. I also think he is wrongly considered as an understudy.

     

    1 on 1 he’s as good as any of the options we have. I’d like to see a race between him James F and Samaras..?

     

    We can build around this guy in due course.

     

    I don’t care who Leaves in January As long as its not Lenny. Credit to NFL for creating a system and mentality that players fit in to. So often managers allow players to determine the culture.

     

    Proud to be a Tim!

  12. Has anyone else noticed that it’s all the Tims that are walking about like Zombies today.

     

    That’s what happens when you don’t go to bed till 3AM on a school night !

  13. TheOriginalSadiesBhoy on

    Paul 67

     

     

    Great article yet again.

     

     

    How does Neil follow the last two performances against Barca when we go to Lisbon? Same again only defend a bit further up field. However – I’m prepared to let Neil come up with his own master plan. After all he did it in Moscow as well.

     

     

    From the last article, I agree with those posters who gave Kris Commons a special mention. I thought he was absolutely outstanding last night. He fulfilled his defensive duties brilliantly. Well done Kris.

  14. Just watched the whole match again on Celtic TV, this team will get better and better, hats off to you Neil you’ve exceded my wildest dreams for the Young Lions with last nights performance.

     

     

    Any player in the Celtic squad who doesn’t want to stay and be part of what Neil is building we’re probably better off without anyway, I can’t see many chapping the managers door looking for a move after last night.

     

     

    Bring on the Saints..

  15. Forgot to add special thanks to our scouting networks.

     

    Whether its seeing players from unfashionable leagues such as Isreal in the cases of Ambrose + Kayal or plucking a player from Division 1 obscurity.

     

    After years of spending too much on people with questionable ability and less motivation, we are buying hungry lads intent on making their mark.

     

    More power to them.

  16. CultsBhoy loves being 1st forever & ever on

    Keith Jackson

     

     

    What a fud! On Talksport warning of Armageddon again if Hearts go bust. There are none so blind as those who WILL not see?

     

    SPL is cleaning up and all the better for it. Amazing Jackdon is given media space given his Craig ‘billionaire. Whyte patter…

  17. Brilliant stuff Paul67…..

     

     

    I think Joe Ledley deserves a special mention too…..that man hardly touched the ball but his work in closing down space/players was phenomenal.

     

     

    Each time Xavi or Iniesta lifted there heads they saw Joe and Vic ready and waiting.

     

     

    A team brimming with heroes last night….and a stadium full with the greatest supporters.

     

     

    Perfect Symmetry….

  18. When the erudite Paul67 some years ago

     

    pronounced our G.O.D.

     

    Little did I know he was referring to Europe.

     

    La vita è bella

  19. stephenpollock on

    What is pleasing for me is that is that Neil Lennon has grown into the brightest young manager in British football and being spoken in terms of his coaching ability as opposed to the nonsense of hatred of previous seasons. Long may it continue.

  20. Wee boy: “Mummy is Barrack Obama the most powerful man in the world?”

     

     

    Mummy: “No darling…..that would be Victor Wanyama!”

  21. Philvis, spot on

     

     

    I remember john colquhoun telling of his time at Tynecastle when the away end was belting out the sash. Then he went down home end and they were too.

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