The script is written


Notwithstanding the possibility of further setbacks from tonight’s international games, or from commercial flights back to Glasgow, the core of Neil Lennon’s team for Saturday looks stable.

Assuming Christopher Jullien is fit, he will play alongside Shane Duffy and Kristoffer Ajer, with Vasilis Barkas in goal.  The central metronome of the team: Callum McGregor and Scott Brown, will be in-situ, Jeremie Frimpong and debutant Diego Laxalt will occupy the wingback roles.

That leaves three places for the manager to fill.  Albian Ajeti is now beyond his expected recuperation period and should be ready for 90 minutes, but Neil will be mindful of how his decision to throw a recuperating Mohamed Elyounoussi into December’s League Cup Final backfired.  Moi was a passenger at Hampden and Celtic did not spark until after he was replaced.  Albian plays a different role and I expect he will get the nod.

That leaves two slots to fill, a forward and an attacking mid.

Odsonne Edouard’s health will be assessed when he arrives in the country less than 24 hours before kick-off.  It is a lot to ask of a player to start under these circumstances, but he persistently terrifies the Newco defence.  If he has remained asymptomatic throughout it is likely we will see him at some point.

I would start Leigh Griffiths in a heartbeat.  He has experience performing in and winning these fixtures.  His attitude is perfect for them and he is a born goal-scorer; for years, the sugar in our tea.  Patryk Klimala will be full of confidence after his remarkable recovery and goal in Perth last time out.  I doubt he will start but he is a striker – just think back to the aforementioned League Cup Final, when Lewis Morgan started up front.  That really was an understrength Celtic team.

Ryan Christie would fill the attacking mid role, were he not excluded while healthy, but this is one position Neil is drowning in options for.  Olivier Ntcham is most likely to get the start, but Elyounoussi, David Turnbull and Tom Rogic are all more than capable, although I would hold Tom for a late goal-scoring cameo.

It is understandable that news of pandemic exclusions are alarming, but frankly, I don’t know what anyone is worried about.   The script is written for this one.

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  1. TOSB


    I agree that song is a real pick-me-up for anyone who needs a wee bit of cheering up.


    Calling Bada `Banda` Bing is quite uplifting as well :-))

  2. Garcia Lorca,


    Thanks for responding. I worked alongside Jimmy from 1993 until about 1997 when, I think, he left heading for Turkey? I hope he’s still doing well. HH

  3. Hot Smoked



    Don’t know if you can recall but a large part of the support were of the opinion that if we won the 9 the 10 would be easy.

  4. I don’t expect Celtic to be bringing in any free agents. But if we were looking, Asamoah the former LWB at Inter Milan and Juventus would be a shout.

  5. Based on nothing but gut reaction, hope and an unwavering belief we will dole out an old fashioned doing this weekend I’d be going with…





    Ajer Duffy Julien


    Frimpong McGregor Brown Rogic Laxalt


    Ajeti Griffith



    Early goal (Griffith from a Laxalt cross), three up at half time (Rogic & Ajeti) then a second half substitute hat-trick for French Eddie. 6-0, job done…socially distanced party time!

  6. HS



    I think the sense was that the impact created by 9 would create an inexorable momentum to the 10.



    HH jg

  7. Big Wavy,



    Are you on the red biddy too? I love big Tam R but there is no chance I’d be starting him on Saturday.



    How many minutes has he played since March?


    Not many, that’s how many 😂



    It’s too much of a risk IMHO – though would be delighted to see him make an appearance later on for that bit of magic.

  8. Call me Gerry



    Nobody else seemed to notice. Maybe iot’s worth a go :)



    Majestic Hartson



    I’d play him in from the start. You have to start him some point. We have 5 subs to play with now. Doesn’t work, unleash young Turnbull….



    Now pour me another :)




  9. Hot Smoked



    Largely due i suspect that Sevco were on the brink of financial collapse.


    Phil Mac and James Forrest blogs were of the mind that the well was dry and a fire sale or insolvency event was imminent.


    When you factor in Covid making things substantially worse and significant investment in their squad that thought was misguided.


    Somebody is prepared to keep funding the mounting losses, why our club isn’t shouting for FFP maybe Paul 67 could tell us why?


    Looks to me like history is just repeating itself until we get a Sevco title win.

  10. Beaton failed to red card Moreloss 3 times ,and gave Boyata a straight red card for dissent, if anyone can find another straight red for dissent, I would love to hear about it, that is our main danger on Saturday.

  11. SID on 14TH OCTOBER 2020 4:07 PM



    1. I believe FFP requirements have been suspended for the time being due to the pandemic.



    2. Things have panned out pretty much as The Great Desmondo wanted them to, so he’ll not be unhappy. And at the end of the day, that’s all that matters.

  12. SID,



    Doesn’t COVID give them a lifeline on FFP this year?



    Jammy cheatin’ effers they are….




  13. Big Wavy, Ernie



    Yeah suspended for this year but Scotland is one of the few countries without FFP, why is that?



    At the last accounts Sevco had 76M over spent in 8 years, that will substantially increase when the accounts are released shortly.



    I would suggest that answers Bluegrass question of why did we let it get to this.

  14. worth a repost, enjoy.






    GARCIA LORCA on 14TH OCTOBER 2020 10:55 AM


    It’s my younger brother’s birthday today which every year sets me off thinking about those remarkable events about to occur on the 19th October 1957.





    I was living in the Gorbals back then.Dad was a fireman who worked shifts and had announced that he could not take me or my older brother to the upcoming League Cup Final on the 19th. I had just turned 10 years old and my older brother was 14. It was agreed he would take me to Hampden and look after me and for the occasion my Mum knitted a block green and white scarf.





    It’s amazing how down through the years the memory can be squeezed to catch flashes of that so very special day.





    Usual nerves on the morning of a cup final. Rangers are favourites and we have a gifted but inconsistent squad of players.





    It was a lovely autumn day and we set off from Crown Street up by Dixon’s Blazes and along Aitkenhead Road to the Celtic end of Hampden.





    I was placed strategically at the very front immediately behind the goal. Then the singing of the National Anthem which in those days was obligatory and met with a lusty rendition of the Soldiers Song from the. Elric end. I cannot really recall the first goal but do remember Celtic going 2-0 up and thinking we might win this cup. The previous year I had been at Celtic’s first ever appearance in a League Cup Final against Patrick Thistle drawing 0-0. Celtic won the replay but it was played on a Wednesday afternoon so as a 9 year old lad I had to attend St Luke’s school in the Gorbals. I remember very clearly our teacher putting a class radio on for us to listen to part of the commentary from Hampden. The radio itself was a great big box fitted to the wall so it boomed across the classroom. Celtic won the cup- and I wasn’t there. I had also been at the 1955 Scottish Cup Final when we lost an equaliser to Clyde in the dying moments and then lost the replay on the Wednesday afternoon. I was at that replay and recall walking back from Hampden in the drizzle with my Dad. If you attended the Raith Rovers Final at I Rox then you will recall the feeling of hopelessness. The following year 1956 it was Hearts in the Scottish Cup Final . I was in the north enclosure with my Mum and Dad. My Dad became involved with a Hearts supporter who called him a denial so and so. Bad move on his part. I recall leaving Hampden beaten 3-1 and the ground shaking with the roars as Hearts went up for the cup. Another cup final and beaten again.





    Back at Hampden in 1957 and we are 2-0 up and it’s half time. Dare to dream. Celtic scored a third up at the Rangers end but then this very clear image emerges of centre forward Billy Simpson heading home a cross to make it 3-1. Surely not. Half the stadium was a sea of blue . It was a feature of those games back then. Literally looked as though someone had coloured the terraces blue. In the end there was nothing to fear. 3-1 became 4-1 then 5-1 . At this point the bottles flew at the Rangers end. I could see they were fighting amongst themselves and the terracing was thinning. Celtic made it 6-1 and my brother ( Jim ) decided Wednesday should move to the back of the Celtic end. Older readers will recall the passageway which ran across the Celtic end . We took up position high up there just as Willie Fernie readied to take a penalty. It was now very gloomy but my clear recollection is the man beside me on the rail. He was apoplectic and pleading in equal measure for Willie not to miss that penalty. We were 6-1 up and beyond our wildest fantasy yet he knew the significance of getting that extra goal. Willie did not disappoint.





    Bright lights came on and lit up the presentation area and the Celts went up for the cup. Wonderful.





    Very clear images of the Celtic support heading back along Aitkenhead Road. A huge tricolour stretched across the road led the procession and another guy had a school janitors bell as the crowd sang “ the bells of hell”.





    We reached the top of Crown Street where the Greek Thompson church stands today beside The Brazen Head. The police laid into the crowd a bit more enthusiastically than mere crowd control required but that was how it was.





    Fist fights sporadically broke out the length of. Down Street but I hurried home with my lucky green and white scarf ready to talk my Dad through a day he would regret missing for the rest of his life.





    I guess he compensated for that miss by taking us all ( wee brother included ) to Lisbon. That’s another story.





    Good luck to the Celts on Saturday. I will be in London but my heart will be in Glasgow and I will remember that day all those years ago when Celtic absolutely thumped Rangers 7-1.




  15. Duffy starts for the Free State Eleven (Again)…



    Up against Finnish superstar Kamara tonight…



    Keep fit big lad.




  16. theBHOYfromU.N.C.L.E on

    In Garcia Lorca’s post I see mention of St Lukes primary(gorbals)…………..brings back memories of the the day we,(St Pauls Shettleston) had an epic tussle with them at Glasgow Green 1965/66,it was nip and tuck right to the end but we ran out eventual winners 0-18(we were away).


    Although I finished our third top scorer for the season it still rankles with me that I didn’t get on the scoresheet that day……….our goalie asked to play outfield second half and proceeded to score four,remember getting ribbed about it on the bus back home.



    intherapy csc

  17. onenightinlisbon on

    BIG WAVY on 14TH OCTOBER 2020 1:00 PM






    Worked in a Glasgow city centre office in the 90’s. Full of huns. Don’t remember any good days re the football….aye the youngsters don’t know what it’s like!

  18. bluegrass celt on

    I stand by what I said last night. We’ve regressed when we should have buried the new kids on the block. They have improved greatly yes, but we should have blown any threat away ( that would have sunk them never mind getting the Ten) In any case, thinking that getting 10IAR will kill them off shouldn’t bother a new team that much, unless we think of them as the old mob, like the MSM would like have us all believe.


    Someone else says that it’s good to have competition and learn from defeat. Absolutely, but in Europe not at home. And we haven’t learned very much from defeats in Europe, crazy ones at that.


    I’m still more concerned that we find ourselves worried about thems beating us, myself included. Why did it get to this stage?


    We should’ve had enough to get 10,11,12…..20IAR, our benchmark should have been Europe. But we are back to the two horse race that harks back to the bad old days.


    If we pump them then yous can all battered in for being so bloody negative. I’d gladly eat the humble pie



  19. DAVID66 ( and maybe others) ?



    My computer and mouse have been broken recently and thats why I havent been on here for over a week..I think ?


    I took delivery Today of a new Computer and Mouse etc…but sadly the “new computer” is faulty and I have to send it back tomorrow.


    The new Mouse is working fine and that why I am able to finally access this Blog and Websites, DESPITE having to use my “Old” Computer for the moment.


    I hope that you are all well…and I am also depressed by the closure of the Pubs yet again.


    Why is it that I can visit a Cafe and have Tea/Coffee etc…but I cant visit a Pub for a Pint of Beer…does Covid NOT exist in Cafes ?




    just asking out of frustration and sadness.



  20. Bluegrass Celt


    This is not directed specifially at you. Your post reminded me of it.



    So, anyone:



    What is the point of saying ` should have` ?

  21. Kinda cooks that despite all our setbacks we could name that team Paul and still have the following bench : Edouard, Rogic, Ntcham, Turnbull, Taylor, Klimala and Bain



    4 previous hunskelpers on there and 3 with potential.

  22. Big Jimmy


    Good to see you are OK



    re this `Why is it that I can visit a Cafe and have Tea/Coffee etc…but I cant visit a Pub for a Pint of Beer…does Covid NOT exist in Cafes ?`



    I would guess that part of the reason is that you don`t have 12-15 cups of coffee spread over ten hours !


    Also, not everyone can hold their drink as well as you can and some people have been know to be socially irresponsible unfer the influence :-)

  23. HOT SMOKED on 14TH OCTOBER 2020 5:36 PM




    Thx for your kind words etc.


    I see your point about 15 Pints of Beer and drinking for 8/10 hours etc……BUT….Surely if I was in a Cafe for 15/20 minutes…I could still catch Covid ?



  24. Who gives a flying fuck about Desmond’s views, he is a major shareholder in celtic, one of many. I have met plenty of celtic supporters who like games vs. Sevco and will call them rangers and they are entitled to their views also. I would prefer scottish football minus a team from the Southside claiming to be another team that once played over at the Southside. Despite all the spin it remains very clear to me and companies house that it is a new entity.



    Celtic have the better group of players and if we fail to beat sevco or any other team to the title it will be due to underperforming from the top to the bottom at celtic.




  25. Big Jimmy


    Of course you could but the chances are much greater if you are in their for much longer and new customers continue to arrive.


    Much as I miss them, I truly believe pubs are dangerous places re the spread of Covid. Whilst I am on the subject, I still find it hard ti believe that Sevco were allowed to play in fron of nearly 50,000 people when the contagious nature of the virus was already known.

  26. The Battered Bunnet on

    They’ll play their (by now) well established narrow 3-2 shape in midfield. In recent matches against them we’ve paired Broonie and CalMac in the centre plus one ahead. We haven’t been able to get the ball off them when they had it, and we haven’t been able to pass through them when we had it. We continually turn the ball over. They consistently win the loose balls. It’s not fun to watch and must be murder to play.



    My thoughts tend towards a midfield 4 in a diamond with two up front – no wingers – but Lenny’s preference for 3 at the back puts the kybosh on that.



    I think much of the unease in our ranks is in recognising that Lenny needs a new plan and we haven’t seen it yet. Perhaps if the March fixture hadn’t been cancelled we’d be better informed, but here we are. Lenny and his colleagues are paid well enough to know, and have had more than enough time to figure it out, so I’m looking forward to a home win in dominant style. ;¬)

  27. TOSB


    No need to apolgise. Your version was so popular the cafe in The Sopranos has changed its name.

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