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The dirty little subject

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When (not if) the season is called, the dirty little subject will rear its head, Celtic have five postponed home league games on the season ticket.  While Celtic are likely to be Last Man Standing after the financial crisis that will engulf the game following on from the health crisis, we are set to lose tens of millions of pounds and will inevitably lose money over this period.

What next season will look like remains uncertain; we don’t know when football will resume behind closed doors, when fans will be able to attend or enough clubs will survive to give us a competition.  With so many doubts, we cannot be complacent, which is why players and execs took a pay cut and non-essential staff were furloughed.  In short, we need to retain as much income reduce costs where possible.

There is another side of this story.  We have over 50,000 season ticket holders, many of whom have been without an income in weeks, some are on reduced wages and, inevitably, some will have no job to return to when furlough ends.  As a club, we have to offer a refund for those five games, cash is too important for a family that has none, they cannot put food on the table with a Superstore voucher.

Partick Thistle offered fans a refund and those who needed it, took it, but 96.5% of season ticket holders left the money in their club.  By any standards, that is incredible.  I suspect the demographics of the Celtic support are different; we have plenty of wealthy fans, but I know many who put a huge portion of their disposable income into following Celtic, almost certainly a higher percentage than Partick.

More Celtic fans will need a refund to get through the month, so it should be offered – as soon as possible after the season is called.

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  1. Neustadt-Braw on

    Hoopy Birthday P67…

     

     

    have a braw day …you share it with approximately 17.7 million people worldwide…and Karl Marx…

     

     

    smiley Saor Alba thing

     

     

    Braw

  2. I’m not worried about whether a refund will be offered. It will, if and when the season is called. What’s going to be difficult will be next season. To put up £4, 5-600 a head + will be quite an ask with no prospect of being present at a game for some time is quite an ask.

  3. Difficult times for many indeed, I renewed both Mrs RobinBhoy’s and my season ticket as the renewals were sent out and we are in the fortunate position that if a refund is offered that we can leave the money in the club to help out.

     

     

    Did the same with our Silverstone tickets for the cancelled Grand Prix, we will go next year, hopefully, with the tickets purchased for this year.

     

     

    We’ve also got flights, hotels and tickets for the Singapore Grand Prix but somehow I can’t see that happening either but the travel insurance will take care of that.

  4. Happy Birthday Paul….

     

     

    All the Best Sir 👍🥃🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🍀👋

     

     

    Keep up the great work and look forward to your commentary once the secret dossier hits the fan…..hopefully each and every one of The Klan – full on the chin !

     

     

    Will be interesting to see / read / hear the overall reaction across the entire landscape of Scottish football, as it will be to see how the “Cheer-leaders” spin the bombast !

     

     

    Hail…..Hail….to all CQN readers…..

     

     

    CharlieBhoy

  5. Martin42, thanks Dad! x

     

     

    SFTBs, thank you also.

     

     

    HamiltonTim, really good to hear from you. I have read so many loving tributes to Helen, we all care about you and look forward to seeing you again.

     

     

    TEUCHTER ÁR LÁ, cheers!

     

     

    Hebcelt, sunsoaked Lanarkshire back at you, thanks.

     

     

    Curly, Turra we meet again!

     

    Parkheadcumsalford, good to hear from you, G. Hope you’re well.

     

     

    Voguepunter, many thanks!

     

     

    Richie, HH back to you.

     

     

    Gene, I sure will!

     

     

    Torontony, slainte to you too! Thanks.

     

     

    Philbhoy, you’re v welcome and thank you. You know me and amnesties. I’m always open to it, but I’m always going to side w the (very underappreciated) mods. Thankless task and all that. Anyone is welcome who gets this.

     

     

    Park Road 67, Hoopy thanks!

     

     

    Big Jimmy, Big Thanks. Hope you’re well.

     

     

    GLENDALYSTONSILS, the elbow’s great, the eyesight, however…..

     

     

    Corkcelt, thank you and such a great sentiment. Happy birthday to you too! We share the day w Tony Blaire and Graeme Souness. Hmmmm.

     

     

    PÓGMATHONYAHUN, the sun is shining and I sure will!

     

     

    GREENPINATA, I’ll get through all of those drinks. Though not today, obviously!

     

     

    BLANTYRETIM, “You and I will get to 55 before Sevco.” Like it! Thanks.

     

     

    Almore, you are very welcome, thank you.

     

     

    CONNAIRE12, many thanks. Hope the sun is shining on Inverclyde….

     

     

    TONYROME, absolutely, always will be a bhoy!

     

     

    Leftclicktic, Hoopy thanks!!

     

     

    JINKYREDSTAR, mornin’ and thank you!

     

     

    Jobo! You are very welcome and thank you.

     

     

    NORRIEM, thanks, and Happy Birthday to Kevin in Toronto!

     

     

    Big Joe, Big Thanks! Enjoy.

     

     

    Catman, thank you. Aye, it’s not the way we wanted it, but we’ll find a way to enjoy it.

     

     

    MAGNIFICENTSEVEN, thank you!

     

     

    NEUSTADT-BRAW, Karl Marx! Souness or Marx? Obviously, neither, but if pushed, the latter. Thank you!

     

     

    ROBINBHOY, I sure will, thanks.

  6. Happ Birthday Paul67,

     

    have as good a day as possible,

     

    and thanks for continuing to provide

     

    a great blog.

  7. BROGAN ROGAN TREVINO AND HOGAN on

    Good Afternoon.

     

     

    First of all a very Happy Birthday to Paul67.

     

     

    If things were different, I would have been out of bed at very early o’clock this morning to fly to London and then on to Milan to take part in a celebration commemorating the fact that today a Celtic team made up entirely of 11 homegrown players had reached a European Cup Final for the second time.

     

     

    While we rightly focus upon the heady heights scaled by the club on a May night in Lisbon, that triumph overshadows and banishes to the corner the influence that Celtic had on European Football for the next number of years.

     

     

    Apart from demonstrating that Cattenaccio could and should be beaten, 1967 saw Celtic declare their intent on the European stage under Stein.

     

     

    However, in the following years Celtic showed a true and prolonged European pedigree that with a little tinkering and a smattering of luck could have seen the club land the big cup more than just the once.

     

     

    During a recent twitter debate the question was asked what one thing, be it a result or a signing or a policy, would you change if you could rewrite the entire history of Celtic.

     

     

    Many, like myself, went for the result in the San Siro spouting the mantra that had we won against Feyenoord then that would have enhanced our history still further.

     

     

    When writing the book on Willie Wallace for CQN, Willie told me that we beat ourselves that night. Things were not right between the players and Stein and that there were arguments behind the scenes over win bonuses and the likes. Big Jock also told the team that Feyenoord couldn’t really play and that yon guy Van Henegam was a haddy and that they shouldn’t be too worried about him!

     

     

    Willie was also adamant that had the game gone to a replay then there would have been only one winner and that Celtic would have had a totally different attitude. He was certain they would win.

     

     

    But such is the nature of football at this level that if you don’t bring your best then you won’t get the result.

     

     

    Debate still rages as to whether or not a place should have been found at the start for the brilliant George Connelly who had been so influential against Leeds, but who could have argued with the team of Williams, Hay, Gemmell, Murdoch, McNeill, Brogan, Johnstone, Wallace, Hughes, Auld and Lennox?

     

     

    Perhaps George could have started instead of Jim Briogan but Jim was one of our best players that night and a mention must go to Evan Williams who was outstanding.

     

     

    However, Jim’s forte was as a hard tackling defensive cover, whereas George, who was no soft touch, could read the game and was able to hold the ball and create. Maybe we would have been on the back foot less with George in the team? Who knows?

     

     

    However, back on Twitter I was taken with those who argued that they favoured another result to change.

     

     

    One very strong argument was that had big Billy not slipped to allow Pierino Prati to score at Celtic Park in the quarter final of 12th March 1969 and we had beaten Milan in that match, then there was absolutely no doubt that we would have gone on to beat Manchester Utd in the semis (Milan won 2-1) and then won against the emerging Ajax side in the Bernabau final where the Italian team, who scraped by us, cuffed the Dutch side by four goals to one.

     

     

    Had that season played out in that way, then by the time you came to 1970 then Celtic would have been twice winners, undoubted and undisputed kings of Europe and would have been far better prepared to meet a second Dutch side in the final in Italy.

     

     

    Had that happened just think of the pull and allure of Celtic in the transfer and recruitment market? Would Stevie Highway have ever gone to Liverpool? Would others who found their way to other big clubs have been attracted to Celtic Park? Would Ajax or Bayern have dominated in the way they did for a number of years if Celtic had grabbed the moment?

     

     

    Would players have stayed longer at Celtic Park instead of heading to England and what would our standing and branding have been like across Europe?

     

     

    Another argument was that had Dixie not missed the penalty and we had beaten Inter in the first ever penalty shoot out and gone on to face Cruyff’s Ajax in the final in Rotterdam then we would have been far more determined than Inter who more or less lay down to the Dutch champions.

     

     

    However, it was not to be, but the fact remains that had there been a little bit of luck, a rub of the green or even a wee bit more professionalism at Celtic Park or in the San Siro then big cup would have been lifted more than once.

     

     

    AC Milan said that we were by far the toughest and best side they played in 1969 and in terms of European competition we were there or there abouts throughout the era.

     

     

    And ALL with Scottish players.

     

     

    So today we should remember Evan Williams, Davie Hay, Jim Brogan, John Hughes and George Connelly because they took to the field in a Celtic shirt in a European Cup Final and many brilliant players from our past will never be able to say they achieved that.

     

     

    Finally, two other short tales from this day should be borne in mind.

     

     

    Immediately after the game at the San Siro, many fans made their way to Malpensa Airport to fly back to Glasgow where they were met with a lightning Air Traffic Controllers strike and thousands of celebrating Feyenoord fans. My dad had to rush to the British Consulate in Milan to try and get help as thousands of football fans were crammed into the airport.

     

     

    At the airport, my mother pleaded with the groundstaff to let her take control of the airport tannoy , just as she had done in Lisbon 3 years before, so that she could at least load up the planes, partially empty the airport and so avoid a potential calamity involving Hillsborough like overcrowding and a potential riot.

     

     

    They eventually saw sense and gave her the microphone.

     

     

    There are many days in Celtic’s history spoken about in our house — cup finals, league wins, great games and all the history.

     

     

    However, my mum says that the post match events in Malpensa Airport should be celebrated as THE greatest ever tribute to the fans of Celtic Football Club.

     

     

    Despite the strike, despite the overcrowding, despite the very friendly and enthusiastic Feyenoord fans rightly celebrating their heads off in and around the Celtic fans — Malpensa airport saw not so much as a broken window, an overturned ashtray or a heated word. There was no police intervention, no arrests, no detentions, nothing — despite the great disappointment of losing and the frustration of being crammed into that airport with the supporters of the winning team.

     

     

    THAT is a truly magnificent testament to the fans of the club — and to the fans of Feyenoord FC!

     

     

    Lastly, not too long after losing that final, Big Jock sought out the services of a stocky centre forward from Motherwell called John Deans.

     

     

    As mentioned above a few years later he would miss a penalty in a European Tie.

     

     

    The Scottish press hounded him for that. They camped on his doorstep, chased him down the street, approached his relatives and generally made the man’s life a total misery for just over a fortnight.

     

     

    My mum and dad would have made a fortune had Celtic made the final in Rotterdam as my old man had reserved every hotel bed in the city months before because he was certain that Celtic would feature in the final.

     

     

    However, when he was dying my dad revealed the one incident in his lifetime that he would have loved to have changed was not the result but the way Dixie was hounded by the press as their treatment of him was criminal in his eyes. Some journalists had even approached my dad, knowing what the penalty miss had cost him, and asked for his comments on Dixie, that miss and what it had cost our family.

     

     

    My old man hunted them, refused to co-operate and literally chased them out of his office.

     

     

    And when he was dying he said that if he could go back and change something that was what he would change – the way that Dixie Deans was treated by the Scottish Press.

     

     

    But why mention that incident here?

     

     

    Because it was on this day that Celtic played Hibs in the Scottish Cup Final of 1972 — just 16 days after that penalty miss.

     

     

    The story goes that before the cup final big Jock took a somewhat downcast Dixie aside and talked to him about how he had been treated by the press since the semi final against Inter.

     

     

    Dixie was told to go out and “stick it to the press, shut them up, make them eat their own words!”

     

     

    And by God didn’t he do just that against a very good Hibs side!

     

     

    Today is a day to remember just how good Celtic were POST Lisbon and to celebrate the players who are sometimes overshadowed by the Lions but who were amongst the mighty in Europe.

     

     

    Today is a day just to Celebrate the players and the fans.

     

     

    If you know the History ……………………

     

     

     

    BRTH

  8. The cost of Celtic to me is slightly different to fans from the west of Scotland ( i travel from Ireland).

     

     

    Most seasons, i miss a good percentage of games due to clusters with euro games , midweek fixtures, not in quick enough for cheap flights, family commitments etc

     

     

    As such, i leave money on the table each year.

     

     

    In the current circumstance, i was intending to travel for all the remaining home games if possible. As I am not flying, buying my dad a ticket, going to the pub, 2 taxis either end – i am actually well up financially by missing the games.

     

     

    Feels churlish for me to take a refund in these circumstances , say €150 when i probably have saved about €1100

  9. Happy Birthday Paul67 mine is on this Friday VE Day.

     

    We should ask the support what they want done with this money a Refund or the Celtic Foundation using it to support needy families .

     

     

    KTF

  10. rpmcelticfan on

    Happy birthday and thanks to Paul67 , and to all the Bhoys and Ghirls around the world whose birthday is today or dayabouts :) Hail hail we are the Champions (again).

  11. Jinkyredstar on

    BRTH

     

     

    My abiding memory of the final against Hibs was Dixie’s third goal when he seemed to beat the whole Hibs defence twice, slotted it home and then did a kind of ‘drunken uncle’ somersault come ‘over your wulkies’

     

     

    Hilarious – a great playe, great memories and still great ambassador for the Club

  12. Paul67

     

     

     

    HamiltonTim, really good to hear from you. I have read so many loving tributes to Helen, we all care about you and look forward to seeing you again.

     

     

    ———

     

     

    Paul, the tributes to Helen and offers of support for me across social media have been absolutely incredible but definitely none more so than CQN.

     

     

    I genuinely feel the posters have wrapped a blanket around me since Saturday night and kept me safe.

     

     

    I will never be able to thank them enough.

  13. I agree with today’s article. If Celtic is indeed a ‘family’ as is often referred, we must offer refunds. It is the right thing to do. Happy birthday Paul, it doesn’t seem that long since your last one.

  14. I’m on the waiting list so it’ll be interesting to see how many season tickets are available when the time comes.

     

     

    Celtic fans won’t be found wanting when it comes to rallying around our club.

     

     

    I don’t expect a big uptake for refunds this season but Celtic are doing the only decent thing and offering one.

     

     

    I’m sure the Scottish press will be asking some hard hitting questions of any club that refuses their supporters the option of a full refund…

  15. Happy birthday Paul67,

     

     

    We should definitely leave options on the table for the broad church of Celtic followers and leave those who need to recoup every penny to survive, feeling no stigma at all in doing so. Unprecedented times.

     

     

    Working through what a product looks like next season, how to go raise cash reserves and be creative in the face of this crisis requires time and brains. Beyond irritated that valuable time and energy is being wasted to indulge in those losers from the southside who care for nothing but themselves.

     

     

    Hope everyone is safe and well and prayers offered up for HamiltonTim and his dear family and friends.

  16. I have never had a Celtic Season Ticket as I live too far away and would not be able to make many games, however, I would be more than happy to pay for a subscription service whereby you get to watch all the home games for however long it takes until all this is sorted out

     

     

    Maybe a monthly subscription, or a ‘virtual season book’ with a one off payment in order for the club to get the money in as quickly as possible.

     

     

    Fans have been crying out for something like this for years so now is the perfect time to explore such a venture

     

     

    Oh and Happy Birthday Paul67

     

     

    🍀

  17. Happy Birthday Paul!

     

     

    I remember the blog was having a few wee issues during a game versus the dark side back in 2008. I worked for a Microsoft Partner at the time and posted a link to one of the first scalable Virtual Machine hosting solutions called MaxV and asked if you had had a look at it.

     

     

    So many CQNers clicked on the link it was the second highest driver of traffic to the companies website that month. The Marketing director, asked we if I knew what CelticQuickNews was. I explained, asked her for a date and we are married to this day.

     

     

    HH good sir, can’t believe the things we have all seen since the blogs inception.

     

     

    Cheers!

  18. 24 hrs after some pundits suggested Gerrard would walk this summer, he’s on talksport discussing Celtic’s financial advantage over his lot and refuses to offer a personal commitment to stay…

     

     

    This is a man desperate for a job offer.

  19. I hope Steven Gerrard remains. Doing a great job.

     

    I hope the 3 bears keep steering the good ship Sevco.

     

    I hope Andy Halliday gets a new contract.

     

     

    Season of goodwill……

  20. PeteTheBeat on

    BRTH – Excellent again –

     

     

    Feyenoord actually knocked holders AC Milan out of the 1969/70 EC so there was no reason to take them lightly.

     

     

    Not sure about 68/69 – I think Man U nearly turned it round against AC Milan in the semis – had it been Celtic Man U – impossible to guess the winner of that.

     

     

    I don’t think we’d have beaten the 1972 Ajax side – remember they eliminated us comfortably in 70/71 and were stronger a year later.

  21. Jimmynotpaul on

    Paul 67.

     

    Happy birthday and have as good a day as possible.

     

    Aipple.

     

    That’s a brilliant story, thanks for sharing.

  22. Bhreith Lá Shona Dhuit, Pól.

     

     

    A little something different.

     

    Last night a friend of mine sent me a memorial piece on Bobby Sands.

     

    I was reading through it when I suddenly realised Bobby died 39 years ago !!!

     

    I had to re-read it and then sit down for a moment.

     

    39 years !!!

     

    I still can’t fathom it.

     

    Reading about the Feyenoord game, that seems like maybe twenty years ago, and Lisbon a wee bit longer.

     

    But 39 years since the Hunger Strikes ?

     

    In my aging mind they were slightly before Seville or around Italia ’90.

     

    When the old folk would tells us to live every day to the last, as life was short, had we the sense to listen to them ? Nope.

     

    Listening now though !

  23. Have a healthy and hopeful birthday Paul.

     

    Like Slippy G I had to get used to disappointment in my football career. Such as it was.

     

    When I went home after not being picked for the Lanarkshire Schools side, I told my dad, I was nearly picked. I was standing next to someone who was.

     

    Trssss boom. I’m here for the foreseeable future.

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