Toure’s ocean, The Pink Pound


The capture of Kolo Toure (35) on a free transfer following his release by Liverpool, goes a long way to addressing one of my key concerns for the coming season. In the last 12 months we’ve spent £6.5m on three central defenders: Dedryck Boyata, Jozo Simunovic and Erik Sviatchenko. They joined Efe Ambrose and Charlie Mulgrew, but the mix was far from right.

Dedryck and Jozo are both long-term injured. Jozo may yet establish himself as a top defender, but Dedryck has already caused performance concerns. Charlie is now out of contract, and with the arrival of Kolo, I don’t expect he’ll re-sign.

Efe put in an excellent performance against Leicester on Saturday (aside from his first 30 seconds) but his consistency and susceptibility to make crucial mistakes in important games, makes him unsuitable for anything more than a backup.

The manager needs someone he knows he can rely upon and who can bring an ocean of experience to help develop what is otherwise a young central defence.  Kolo will do that and more, just as soon as he’s match fit.

The Pink Pound.

I’m unfamiliar with fashion blogs but if the debate on the pink shirt is a guide, maybe I’m missing out.  Third strips are fashion items, the football strip equivalent of bling.  They’ve been so since someone invented the need to invent a third strip every season.  It was never in case your first two strips clashed with an opponent.

I remember a similar reaction when we released a third strip with tartan shorts a few years back.  Despite some heavy weather on release, the shorts sold out.  In it’s online coverage the pink shirt already has a higher profile than most of its predecessors.  Bet it sells well.

I had a brief chat with some people at New Balance last year and the colours we use at Celtic cropped up.  There’s green, white, yellow, black and silver/grey.  Before the 1970s it was pretty much green and white only, then the palette boundaries were pushed.  The New Balance people were all from England, so the nuances of orange, which was used as trim on a well-received black away strip, were lost on them.

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  1. LIONROARS67 on 26TH JULY 2016 10:10 AM



    Johansen didn’t travel. I wouldn’t play Bitton as he has been poor recently and maybe lacking in match sharpness. I would go with McGregor and Roberts for their goal threat and ability to carry the ball and relieve pressure despite the laters defensive frailties. It’s going to need a big performance either way.

  2. Any of the players mentioned could play in tomorrow’s back four, I’m comfortable with them all, I’m not mentioning any named players just for the sake of posting tomorrow “see I telt Yi” I’d fancy any of them to start, BR has a big game ahead of him , him and the players need every Celtic Fan behind them, win, lose or draw, it’s the only way I know how to support Celtic, it’ll never catch on but :))

  3. THETIMREAPER on 26TH JULY 2016 10:19 AM



    Roberts has no defensive capabilities we really need to set up not to concede our biggest problem at this level is conceding goals, IMO it is a real gamble to start with a young inexperienced player on a plastic pitch who might not see much possession, i wouldnt start Roberts, home tie at Celtic park for Roberts




    I would agree with your formation for tomorrow’s game, and also agree that most of the personnel with Celtic over there could play that system well, finishing with a close game , 1-1 or 1-2 preferable :))

  5. traditionalist88 on

    lionroars67 on 26th July 2016 10:26 am



    Hes a skilful player who can carry the entire team up the pitch with one run, relieving the pressure and actually try and hurt them at the same time.



    Attack is the best form of defence. Particularly with our current back line!



    Definite starter for me,







    May I ask – are you the least bit au fait with how difficult it is for Celtic to sign players from England?



    Dembele was a coup – Toure was free and down to his relationship with Brendan.



    We are right up against it when bidding for ‘in demand’ players.



    The CL timetable is ours and we cannot do anything about it – but players and other clubs have their own timetables – we don’t have the clout and/or the money to make them ‘jump to attention’.



    We must keep our contacts with other clubs cordial, be patient and negotiate – it’s the only way – big money can ‘buy off’ problems – we don’t have big money.



    We will buy a couple soon, and I’m sure with get a couple of good loans, when EPL squads have been finalised.



    Peter Lawwell’s has overseen the most successful period in our history outwith the Stein era – let”s not forget that.



    Yes mistakes have been made and some judgement calls have disappointed – no club, or, organisation gets it right everytime – look at Liverpool – how long is it since they won the title? – Man Utd & Arsenal, when will they win the title again?



    We have heavy constraints and sometime expect too much – yes we won the European Cup – so did Aston Villa and Nottingham Forrest twice – where are they now?



    Peter Lawwell is not the problem – he is, and always has been, a big part of the solution.



    Of course we must strive to be at the top table but it gets more difficult each year as the ‘big boys’ move financially further and further away – let’s at least be realistic.

  7. LIONROARS67 on 26TH JULY 2016 10:26 AM



    If the team is set up nice and compact I think we can accommodate Roberts. He gives the team another dimension and will frighten the opposition. If he doesn’t play Griffiths could become isolated.

  8. traditionalist88 on

    Astana don’t score a lot of goals, and on top of that are missing their top scorer.



    Respect them, don’t fear them.



    And play our best footballers.




  9. Peter Lawell should GTF.



    Too long in the job, proven failure only interested in maintaining his bonus against the decline of the product on the park.




  10. Disappointing news this morning another CB skittle falls, but as usual Efe Ambrose is fit ,willing despite the internet.



    Whatever side BR picks it’s makeshift.



    I hope Peter Lawwell having been left behind in charge of the revolving door is working hard, – does this mean any new players before the deadline have the dreaded “ Lawwell signing “ tag even if it’s Scott Sinclair?



    I hope the rumours that because Tom Rogic was replaced in a team kit promotion also means that there is likely transfer activity, it’s not too much to ask that Celtic players can play a full game, and not be unfit season to season.



    Just like Efe its fitness first.

  11. traditionalist88 on

    Astana will be delighted if Roberts isn’t playing tomorrow.



    Decision made.




  12. At best – naivety.


    At worst – ignorance.


    Anyway,…..Sievechenko is too slow.


    Charlie Muldini – fun oot wi Sone Aluko – Hmm ?


    Efe is a maestro in the Ya Ya mould if, he’s played


    as a front sweeper.


    Efe will be a sitting duck if played at the back – without


    a front sweeper playing in front of him ala a Neil Lennon type.


    Brendan just needs to get the shape of the team correct.


    A team the shape of a bus will get the job done…imho.


    But, see when ye think aboot it…..this team that we’re playing,


    up until last week I had never heard of them and yet, the Cellic


    fans of today are having sleepless nights about us playing a team


    that only serves to remind us that, this where regression under Lawwell’s


    watch has brought us. You lot have bought into it, I only hope that


    £45k a week Brendan can find the right buttons to press.





  13. Brendan Rogers. Needs to understand. The players they would like to stay. and the ones they think aren’t good enough to play for Celtic. One player whom i want to see staying at Celtic is Liam Henderson. I see Lennon wants him back at Hibs.so if he rates him, why not Rogers.i think he is a lot better than Bitton Rogic who can’t last 90 mins,Commons another who will not play a full 90 mins,then there is question marks over Allan.who for the life of me we bought in the first place.Armstrong who isn’t good enough there is a couple more who couldn’t lace Liams boots.but this is my honest opinion. I hope Brendan doesn’t sell him to Hibs. a loan to January. would be ok, don’t mess him about, loan some of them I have mentioned. or sell them but keep a talent like Liam Henderson at Glasgow Celtic Football Club.

  14. BR didn’t play Roberts in Gibraltar due to their artificial surface, Astana have one not quite as bad as red imps but still not ideal, maybe the same scenario?





    Mibbe we shouldn’t have embarked on austerity at CP.

  16. Astana are no great shakes at the back, I’m sure Brendan will be looking to move the ball quickly from the back to the front given the opportunity. We’re missing Erik, they’re missing their top striker. Tomorrows game won’t decide the tie so even with a makeshift team, the players chosen will have to step up and give a performance, as it always was.



    No meek Hoops, this a time to stake your claim for a jersey under the new manager.



    How much do you want your jersey!



    Bring on the Kazaks…

  17. Starry I hope they ALL play for the Jersey, even if it is a pink one. (I’m sure it will be)


    British summer conditions forecast for the game tomorrow,btw.



    About 18C and showers.

  19. SFTB




    No matter who we field ,we will struggle.



    This is a squad of very limited ability.


    It lacks height ,strength and pace.



    Without Griffiths ,it seriously lacks goals.



    This tie is a toss of a coin.



    They are an ordinary European side ,who I have as slight favourites to go through ,due to the afore mentioned lack of quality in our side.



    Too many boys ,not enough men.


    Not enough winners in adversity.




  20. THETIMREAPER on 26TH JULY 2016 10:38 AM



    2015/2016 Astana EUFA home results



    Astana 4-3HJK Helsinki


    Astana 1-0 Apoel FC


    Astana 2-2 Galatasaray SK


    Astana 0-0 Athletico Madrid


    Astana 2-2 Benefica


    Astana 2-1 VMFD Zalgiris



    This team have an excellent home record, it would be fantastic to get a win over there BUT! better teams than us have struggled, a miserable drab draw would make this hoops fan delighted at the half way point, even a narrow one goal defeat i will live with, Astana away record not so hot, time then at half time in the tie for a rethink and young Roberts to do his thing



    BTW how good is the Astana left back ? Roberts defensive weakness might be gifting opposition there best form of attack, Janko might be coping 2-1

  21. TT they have lost their main goalscorer due to injury. We still have ours, events things up a wee bit IMO.

  22. traditionalist88 on

    We have to be direct as possible when we have the chance to attack tomorrow. We’re not going to string 40 passes together and score the perfect goal.



    Paddy cutting in from the right heading straight for goal, playing one-twos and getting shots away will be a major concern for them.



    Play the best footballers we have and take it from there.




  23. Much better , fitter , faster , stronger Celtic sides than this one have been poor away from home in Europe , it’s been that way my whole life .


    This particular side have shown they can lose to pretty much anyone but also had some decent results in hard places .


    I will be delighted if we come back without a defeat,

  24. Good morning CQN. Arrived home late last night from holiday so just catching up on the blog events of the last couple of days.


    BMCUWP – Thoughts and prayers for your friends Grandson.











    I’m not long off the phone from him with an update.



    He and his family are so grateful for everyone’s good wishes,etc.



    Yer a grand bunch,you know.

  26. Tiny Tim…



    Not so sure that the squad lacks height..apart from the Scottish midgets Brown and Griff…



    Lustig 6.2″


    Sviatchenko 6.1″


    KT 5.10


    O’Connell 6.1″


    K.Ajer 6.5″


    Nir Bitton 6.5″


    Tom Rogic 6.2″


    Debele 6.0″


    Gordon 6.4″


    Janko 5.10″


    SJ 5 11.1/2″


    Broony 5.9″


    Griffo 5,8″


    Stretch 6.0″


    CMcG 5.10″

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