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The manager, captain, fans and successful teams

598

Anyone who has watched Celtic in recent weeks knows the impact Jeremie Frimpong has on the team.  He alone has the ability to run at and past defenders, without him, Celtic are significantly easier to defend against.  This has been clear from recent performances and his absence from the starting line-up against Riga was my principle concern before the game.

He did not start last night because when we go three at the back, it is Jeremie or James Forrest on the right.  After the game Neil Lennon told us James has struggled with an ankle injury for a couple of weeks, leaving us with the classic ingredients for recency bias.  James’ recent injury-affected form has been below the standard or Jeremie’s.  But of all the occasions you could make a case to start James Forrest, European qualifiers will be the easiest.  He scores and creates goals in qualifiers at a prodigious rate.

Also, watchers of Celtic in recent seasons will know that Injury is the Mother of Invention.  Where would Ryan Christie be without Eboue Kouassi and Olivier Ntcham picking up first half injuries at Murrayfield?  Jeremie is now likely to get a run at Hibs and Sarajevo.  What happens in the middle of the park is more intriguing.

Scott Brown took a knock that will keep him under observation between now and the Hibs game.  That clip on Scott’s Achilles’ gives the manager lots to consider.  After Hibs, we have four hugely important games: Sarajevo, then after the international break: Newco, Aberdeen away and Aberdeen in the Scottish Cup semi-final.  The roster becomes significantly trickier if we overcome Sarajevo, as we would have two Europa League games before next month’s semi-final.

I read many asking, why does Scott Brown play practically every minute of every game?  It is clearly not that you have spotted something that escaped the manager’s attention, Neil Lennon does not have a blind spot that tens of thousands of Celtic fans can see through, so let’s not pretend otherwise.

You have been watching football all of your life, so you know by now that what you see on the field is only part of the story.  Any team: footballers, salesmen, network engineers or shop staff, need a common culture and leadership to reach their best.  What a boss gets from his or her line manager in frontline performance, in any walk of life, is not the entire contribution.

I have a friend who is also a customer.  He tells me what I need to do with my staff and I tell him the same about his staff.  Neither of us take the others’ advice, because I am using the resources I have to keep my team focussed on our objective and he is doing the same.  I talk to him about practically every personal aspect of my life, but I don’t even go into the detail of this stuff with him, because it involves personal details about others.  In very simple environments like mine and his, teams are complicated things.

I would like to see Jeremie start more games and I am really keen to see central mid re-jigged.  From my seat on the couch, both are crucial to our outcomes this season.  But I know there’s a ton of human dynamics in every team that outsiders are clueless about.  The manager needs to keep this indoors while suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous opinion.  It can be a tough gig.  It is good that we have all ‘been there, done that’, when it comes to building a winning football team, so none of us exist in a fantasy that we are the true fonts of wisdom Neil Lennon really has to listen to.  I mean, can you imagine thinking like that?  Jeez.

Have a great weekend.

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598 Comments

  1. Tony Hamilton Green heartFour leaf clover

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    The highlight of my day by some distance was meeting Chris Mullen outside Celtic Park today. Chris signed for the Celtic in 1950. He’s 90. Amazing character Green heartFour leaf clover

     

     

     

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EiIXORMXsAA7Z4t?format=jpg&name=large

     

     

    John

     

    @greenjedi8

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    Is he the oldest living Celtic player?

     

    Tony Hamilton Green heartFour leaf clover

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Not sure, to be honest. He was signed by Jimmy McGrory and made the reserves. Lovely man.

     

    William O’Connor

     

    @wuly67

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    Do you know if he is from the Garngad? I’m sure I remember him saying so when I had the pleasure of meeting him a few year back. Four leaf clover

     

    Tony Hamilton Green heartFour leaf clover

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    He told me he was from Milton

     

    1 more reply

     

    Mark Walker

     

    @mark_walker67

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    I’m sure it was him I met him in the Superstore one day and got chatting with him, gave me a wee card all about him.

     

    You could listen to folk like that all day talk about Celtic.

     

    Anthony McKenna

     

    @bigants1902

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    I would love to hear stories from his time as a

     

    @SaintAnthonysFC

     

    player

     

    Reilly Bhoy

     

    @reilly79

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    I met him in bishopbriggs the other week, stopped me for a chat when he noticed my celtic shorts after I’d been playing 5’s, he’s got his celtic tracky top on, i could’ve been there for hours chatting, cracking guy

     

    Paul Flag of Scotland

     

    @peanutsir67

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    A gentleman

     

    James Mckenna[cotter

     

    ·

     

    Sep 17

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    and

     

    @SaintAnthonysFC

     

    Invite him down for ants game

     

    @kenna_felix

     

    tony gordon

     

    @gordon_tony

     

    ·

     

    Sep 18

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    Was he in the year below you at school?

     

    Tommy T

     

    @1956shirt

     

    ·

     

    Sep 18

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    and

     

    @TheLifeOfTheRon

     

    Thanks Tony I’ll let Chris know. We meet every Thursday and walk round Celtic Park. He says it keep his “steps up”Face with tears of joy

     

    brian christie snr

     

    @bjjc1949

     

    ·

     

    Sep 19

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    I know Chris he stays in Milton and goes to the fruit market car boot sale when it open he is 90 this year.

     

    Tommy T

     

    @1956shirt

     

    ·

     

    Sep 25

     

    Replying to

     

    @polishturnstile

     

    @SaintAnthonysFC

     

     

    @kenna_felix

     

    Spoke to Chris yesterday. He is over the moon with all the comments . He was stopped on the street by one of his pals who said “Mullen your famous your all Twitter”. He would love to a St Ants game.

     

    Saint Anthony’s FC

     

    @SaintAnthonysFC

     

    ·

     

    Sep 25

     

    As soon as we are allowed people back at the games we will be in touch if you could sort it for us to get him to a match?

  2. Neutral venue Thursday. UEFA have said their ground is not fit for purpose at this stage of the Europa lge.

  3. Saint Stivs, I’m probably being slow here but what was your 6:52 photo? Liked it but can’t place it. Ta!

  4. Saint stivs

     

     

    Is he the oldest living Celtic player?

     

     

    ……………

     

     

    According to some surely it’s Scott Brown 🤭

  5. This place has been bonkers the last few weeks!!!

     

     

    I can’t decide whether it’s a minimum or maximum age limit P67 should be enforcing!

     

     

    That’s me moved from Warsaw onto Krakow for a couple of nights and I’m heading out for a drink.

     

     

    Enjoy your night gents/bhoys

  6. Fairhillbhoy 😉 cider must be on ration in the brig from last week! 😂 although think mod 2 maybe outed the truth 😂😂🍀? Hopefully 3-1 to the champs tomorrow

  7. Bobby Evans did not come from a Celtic background nevertheless he did come tae us via deidco’s near neighbours St Anthony Juniors

     

     

    He arrived at us as an old fashioned inside right with amazing stamina levels, “Mr Perpetual Motion” as he was known.

     

     

    However, it was in the “relegation” game at Dens Park when he was switched to right half that he truly excelled. Although Jock Weir scored the perfect hat trick to stave off the fear of relegation it was Bobby who was the real star covering every blade of grass that spring afternoon in the City of Discovery.

     

     

    This near disastrous season gave the club a jolt and the Board brought in the much revered Jimmy Hogan as “trainer”. Jimmy was an English player and coach of Irish descent; who actually contemplated joining the priesthood before turning tae fitba.

     

     

    He is counted among the great pioneers of the game on the European continent and was viewed as one of the finest coaches in world football, a man who could help spark the Celtic team and fire them back to the glory days. He had earned a great European reputation in Austria and Hungary, previously great forward thinking nations in the game.

     

     

    In fact he is credited with the revolution in European football that saw Hungary thrash England 6–3 at Wembley in 1953, ushering in a new football era.

     

     

    After the match, Sándor Barcs, then president of the Hungarian Football Federation, said to the press, “Jimmy Hogan taught us everything we know about football.”Gusztáv Sebes, the Hungarian footballer and coach, said of Hogan, “We played football as Jimmy Hogan taught us when our football history is told, his name should be written in gold letters”

     

     

    After returning home fae the continent the teams were still employed in the kick and rush style of play, but Jimmy preferred the short passing game that had originally emerged in Scotland. It was this “Scottish style” which was the template for his teams, hmmm a bit like how we play right now as opposed tae slippy’s punt up the park and hoping for the best.

     

     

    This is the man that our club entrusted to bring us out of the doldrums of WWII and the early following years. Although only with the club for 2 years he laid the foundations that would bring success culminating in “oh hampden in the sun”.

     

     

    He arrived in Glasgow in the summer of 1948 and was introduced to the players at a golf day at Uddingston.

     

     

    The following day Jimmy called together the squad and gave a speech interspersed with poetry and literary quotes which outlined his vision for the resurrection of this great club.

     

     

    It was to be a vision unfulfilled at the time nonetheless Jimmy got the team working with the ball and he preached to them the importance of getting the small details right. He’d put forward his philosophy with phrases such as “keep the high balls low” and “Keep the ball on the deck it won’t hurt the grass”.

     

     

    Day after day he worked on technique, passing and movement and constantly introduced fresh ideas to a team in urgent need of them.

     

     

    Although too many senior players thought they knew best oblivious to their own part in Celtic’s mediocrity they treated Jimmy’s training methods with cynicism and contempt.

     

     

    He persevered and while his brief stay at Celtic was not exactly trophy laden, 1 Glasgow Cup and 1 Charity Cup (the Danny Kaye Final), he earned huge respect from the younger Celts, some of whom would be inspired by their short time with him.

     

     

    Charles Patrick well known for a dislike of tedious training runs lapped up Jimmy’s ideas and philosophy.

     

     

    Tommy Docherty, a future managerial icon, described him as: “The finest coach the world had ever known”.

     

     

    Another of his Celtic pupils, Jimmy Sirrel, would become a managerial legend at Notts County while Alec Boden would state: “By god, did Jimmy Hogan know football”. But while his training regime, tactics and footballing ideas on the pitch were lauded his methods off the field frequently raised eyebrows.

     

     

    His pre-match ritual saw him perform a brief prayer over keeper Willie Miller’s hands before he went around the dressing room and, irrespective of the player’s religion, used his thumb to mark the sign of the cross on their forehead. Even at a club with Celtic’s traditions Jimmy’s enthusiastic Catholicism was viewed as perhaps a little too ostentatious.

     

     

    One lesson he did impose on the club was players were at times children and had to be bullied on occasion, method in madness, for their own sake. The lack of an iron fist from the club coaching and management meant that the players did not buckle down and learn from this great man.

     

     

    Anyway it was Jimmy on his arrival that persuaded Bobby to consider the right half position his own and that this would be his best position as indeed it would prove to be rather than the makeshift forward he had been used to playing.

     

     

    He was part of the side that won the SC, our first since that record breaking crowd win over the sheep 14 years earlier, and St Mungo Cup in 1951 and 2 years later the Coronation Cup with a League and Cup Double the following year.

     

     

    In the “said lizzie tae philip” final, Bobby was regarded by many as simply sublime, as he played the great Lawrie Reilly out of the game, and not his immediate opponent the Big Mhan, and fittingly instigated the move that led to Jimmy Walsh’s clinching strike in the 2–0 defeat of favourites hibbees.

     

     

    He captained us to our first League Cup in 1956 and returned to Hampden in the same competition the next year for the “I See Fernie Headed Heaven” final

     

     

    By the time of this game he had moved into the centre half position where after several attempts to replace the Big Mhan, who had been the talisman for us for the brief purple patch in the 1950s, he was seen as our saviour there.

     

     

    That afternoon facing the twin threat of black north centre billy simpson, who had earlier starred for linfield and max murray who was their top scorer for 3 consecutive seasons also scoring their first European goal however he even for all that was surprisingly let go to WBA hmmmm, Bobby nullified both players.

     

     

    He had to move position on becoming captain back into the defence to cover for the loss of big Jock, who was on his way to an early playing retirement due to injury. This helped Bobby extend his career playing at Celtic where his reading of the game was well valued as was his skill in managing the defence.

     

     

    He did say in later years on moving to centre half from wing half “the only thing is you don’t do as much running as you tend to read the game more”.

     

     

    The years caught up with him none more so in the SC Semi against the Buddies when Celtic supporter Gerry Baker tore him a new one.

     

     

    Although he completed the following season his replacement was already playing at right back/half and so at the end of that season he was let go to Chelsea. By this time he had played 549 games scoring 11 goals.

     

     

    On leaving he is quoted as saying “I have been very happy at Parkhead but I still think I can stay in top class football for another five years and a new club might well give me a new lease of life”. “The Celtic policy is the wise one of bringing more and more youth into the team and with young Billy McNeill coming along so well it gives me the chance to make a move.”

     

     

    Bobby was approaching his 33rd birthday, his wish did come true and more as he retired after the completion of the 1967 68 season, 8 years after leaving us, in his 41st year.

     

     

    He only lasted 1 season at Stamford Bridge before departing for Newport then back up the road the following season to Morton, then Third Lanark and finally Raith Rovers.

     

     

    I saw him playing against us with the tail of the bank side and Raith where he suffered in an 8-1 loss at home and 4-0 away tae a rejuvenated Celtic side.

     

     

    Bobby’s many qualities were also recognised at international level where he went on to win 48 caps and become captain of Scotland, a great achievement at a time when Celtic were poor and discrimination against Celts was not uncommon.

     

     

    He would have had many more caps but the Scotland support was not united as it is now and there was a substantial lobby for ian mccoll of deidco.

     

     

    It was the time when, in Jock Stein’s memorable phrase, “’Old Firm supporters went to internationals to cheer three players, boo two, and ignore the rest”

     

     

    Bobby made a formal statement to the effect that he no longer wished to be considered for international duty and for a time he dropped out of the Scotland side. In fact in later years he would declare that Waverley aka Willie Gallacher who wrote for the Daily Record always wanted other right halfs in the side.

     

     

    He’d want mccoll, Jimmy Scoular, Jimmy Dudley of West Brom he was always after other right halfs.

     

     

    Now after the previous international it was always that I had played well so how could it come to the time to pick another team and they were always looking for somebody else?

     

     

    When he returned, it was to take over at centre-half from the retiring george young, a move that itself created controversy. Bobby also won 25 caps for the Scottish League XI, to this day the most of any player.]

     

     

    By now the somewhat manic energy of youth had abated and Bobby played a much more waiting role in the middle of the defence, his marshaling of the rearguard being a feature of his game.

     

     

    Bobby Evan’s was my first hero and the night my da came home fae working late tae tell me we had sold him I unashamedly wept, he told me that we had a replacement lined up who would turn out tae be better than him.

     

     

    Now my da wisnae an oracle, just a mhan trying tae console his wee bhoy. That player incidentally was “there’s only one king billy”.

     

     

    You might be wondering why I’m writing about Bobby a 16 year Celt with 545 games and 11 goals under his belt as well as 7 trophies won, well IMHO we have a latter day Bobby Evans in our side, with to date 525 games and 40 goals so far in his 13 years with us as well as 21 trophies plus 1 more with his previous major league side, we call him Broonie.

  8. As a wee extra, IF it is still clear tomorrow night get out about 8ish and look south (where the lunchtime sun might be) and Jupiter is the brightest ‘star’, Saturn is a wee bit to the left (SE), then about an hour later Mars (pinkish/red) should be clear further east/to the left. All with the naked eye. A wee bit fun, is all.

     

     

    Then get back in and prepare the beers for the fun of Sportscene as they choke on their report of the games ramorra!

     

     

    Ave Ave

  9. Ave Ave all,

     

    My Dad, born 06/04/1945, died 25/09/2020.

     

    Life long Celtic supporter.

     

    I hope my memory serves me correctly-

     

    “Da, how long have you had this same seat for?”

     

    “Sean Fallon allowed me this seat. When season tickets first were sold, I immediately turned up at Celtic Park and asked to buy one. Fallon took me out onto the hallowed turf pointed to the Main Stand and asked, “Where would you like to sit?”

     

    Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

     

    Hail Hail

  10. lets all do the huddle on

    Have people been out watching Jupiter, Saturn and Mars in our night sky? Mars still clear to the east, with the naked eye. Oh aye it is!

     

    —–

     

     

    amazing

  11. KINGLUBO @ 8:00 PM

     

     

    I’ve gotta lot of sympathy with you mate. Never nice to be called a liar but to be accused of it on such a sensitive issue is imho a real slur and unless the person making the accusation has evidence to support their accusation then they should be the one apologising. Keep the Faith and keep posting…

     

     

    HH

  12. You might be wondering why I’m writing about Bobby a 16 year Celt with 545 games and 11 goals under his belt as well as 7 trophies won, well IMHO we have a latter day Bobby Evans in our side, with to date 525 games and 40 goals so far in his 13 years with us as well as 21 trophies plus 1 more with his previous major league side, we call him Broonie.

     

     

    that was wonderfully told, quite magical.

  13. EMERALDBEE \O/ A DOUBLE NINER!! on 26TH SEPTEMBER 2020 10:13 PM

     

    As a wee extra, IF it is still clear tomorrow night get out about 8ish and look south (where the lunchtime sun might be) and Jupiter is the brightest ‘star’, Saturn is a wee bit to the left (SE), then about an hour later Mars (pinkish/red) should be clear further east/to the left. All with the naked eye. A wee bit fun, is all.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Then get back in and prepare the beers for the fun of Sportscene as they choke on their report of the games ramorra!

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Ave Ave

     

     

     

    ————–

     

     

    I like that stuff, i watch the sky often, hate the thought of long winter nights, but the consellation is, on clear nights you see all those things,

     

     

    from my seat in the living room, looking south,

     

     

    keep it lit

  14. Great story from St Stivs about a former Celt today also.

     

     

    Never mind if you know your history- if you meet our history!!!

     

     

    ——

     

     

    Agreed Sid ☝🏽

     

     

    KingLubo – most people* on here don’t think it was a deliberate mistake.

     

     

    *©️Ernie :)

  15. Henry joy

     

    My condolences on the loss of your Dad.

     

    Never thought I’d post a link too these two I thought they were just a Gimmick act but this on the late late show as a tribute to their late mum was excellent in my opinion HH. https://youtu.be/lg4jmQuPvU0

  16. Socrates just Loved Fitba.

     

     

    Who is so…..cah…..

     

     

    Good to see Harald Brattback.

     

     

    It isnae easy to put A TOA, into anything, never mind Everything.

  17. It is the Hardest Title to win.

     

     

     

    SG has the newco at maximum, I feel Celtic are miles aff it. So annoying..

     

     

     

    You can dae this Lenny.

     

     

    Wow Frimpers