Valencia draw gives Celtic a chance, lessons from Easter Road


Those suggesting Sunday was the worst Celtic performance of the season have short memories.  The campaign was full of days like this until the emergence of Ryan Christie and halftime in the League Cup semi-final at Murrayfield.

Brendan Rodgers acknowledged he got things wrong.  Three at the back works on paper when you are a few full backs down, but we simply did not know how to defend the flanks when Hibs broke with speed, which fortunately they didn’t do too often.

Every team has to compensate for absences, often with a straight choice: find a direct replacement but maintain the structural integrity of the team, or give the pack a significant shuffle in an attempt to shake things up.  Celtic’s away form this term has been such that Brendan cannot by criticised for wanting to try something new, but 46 seconds into the game it was evident the players did not know what to do.

So what did we learn?  Brendan will not deploy the same line-up/tactics combination again.  We know already we are heavily dependent on fast-thinking-fleet-of-foot players like Ryan Christie, with Callum McGregor in the deep playmaker role.  We know we need a striker to assist Odsonne carry the load – Brendan wants two.  We know energy levels are low with the squad facing two games a week, pretty much since June.

Valencia beat Manchester United last week in the Champions League, so will have no fears of travelling to Celtic Park in the next round of the Europa League, but this draw is neither impossible nor the easiest possible for Celtic.

The Spanish club are 14th in La Liga, a healthy five points above relegation, but will surely be more focussed on getting their domestic results sorted than hoping for Europa glory.  The teams last met in competitive action in 2001, when two home 1-0 wins saw the Uefa Cup tie go to penalty kicks, which Valencia won 5-4, with Larsson, Petrov and Valgaeren all missing for Celtic.

Valencia were also Celtic’s very first European opponents.  The teams met in the 1962 Fairs Cup, Valencia winning the first leg 4-2 before the teams drew 2-2 at Celtic Park, when John Clark missed a penalty.

The games do not take place until February, but Brendan Rodgers will be encouraged his team are in with a chance.  Practice penalties, please.

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  1. So, I was driving to head down South earlier, and as I came through the borders I had radio Scotland on (only station I pick up a reception for)




    It was great to hear, Celtic have been drawn to play Valencia, who are 14th in the Spanish league


    Did anyone ever hear Sevco, were put out of the Europa league, by Villareal, currently 18th in the Spanish league, or Rapid Wien, currently eight in the Austrian league


    Meanwhile Celtic knocked out the current team third in the German league, or league leaders Rosenberg

  2. Gerryfaethebrig on

    Fan a tic



    I think KT is better than Andrew Robertson and I think he is a player .. KT is a terrific defender whereas AR is not

  3. Gerryfaethebrig on




    Alaves 0-0



    Less than 2.5 goals should be the bet every Monday night :-)



    Fellow Celtic fans I will leave you in peace



    Hail Hail



    Night Night

  4. SAINT STIVS on 17TH DECEMBER 2018 9:46 PM




    correction, playing waterford in dublin, and suggest the trouble between belfast and dublin supporters.





    chat on this picture suggests its at waterford, with trouble breaking out in the crowd.







    however, front left, check out the guy.







    “mary, i am off to the gemme, fetch me ma fez”






  5. Incidentally


    I heard Celtic offered the money Aston Villa paid for McGinn, before villa did


    Hibs at the time would not allow McGinn to discuss with Celtic.


    Bottom line knuckle cruncher Petrie and Hun Dempsey, not keen on their player moving to us



    And Celtic, should have signed him 3 seasons earlier, when he left St Mirren, they could have allowed him to develop aka Ryan Christie




    Great photo that one with the kids, gallus or what?


    made me think about our lot at our BBQ last week


    only they were stuck up big gum trees or in the brush




    H.H Mick

  7. Melbourne Mick


    You and your team of Bhoys and Ghirls, are a huge Credit to the name of Glasgow Celtic football club


    What an effort in supporting the needy kids in Aussie land



    Very well done to all



    Hail Hail

  8. big gum trees, is that where wriglets comes from,



    did the weans get “stuck ” up the trees ?




  9. I’d say the pic is from Dublin, I’m pretty certain there was never terracing like that in Waterford. Any time I went I was standing on a grassy hill, it’s possible just possible that some part might have been terraced but I don’t think so.




    Agreed, it was a comment about the poster, not Peter :)

  11. Thank you NORRIE and the same to your lovely daughter.




    The only thing they got stuck into was us aul timers during


    the fitty 8-)))))


    H.H Mick

  12. Corky


    I think the pic is Dalymount, I seem to recall the barriers going up and down as well as across, but other grounds could have had the same thing right enough.

  13. Ah mean,….the Celtic hierarchy, who on presentation of, mountains of Supreme Court backed evidence, which proves that there was collusion between, the SFA and, Rangers FC, to swindle £140 million + , from hmrc, to specifically, cheat Celtic managers, players, and supporters out of twenty 20 + trophies, and, on receipt of this ‘evidence’, the Celtic hierarchy proceeded to throw the four 4 wise men, underneath the PLC bus at the recent AGM.


    And, still, there are well skelped and, prime conditioned ‘plants’, within the community, who’ll spin all the smoke and mirrors games and have the brass necked affrontary, to suggest….



    – “Wait till we see by, how much this, ‘dubious’ hierarchy will back the manager in the next transfer window.”




    “Some say the devil is dead etc…..”



    Nurse! Nurse!




  14. Wee bit of trivia.


    Gum trees also nicknamed widdow makers here as there


    long branches tend to come off in the wind.


    Didn.t seem to bother the young Oz Celtic team lol.


    H.H Mick

  15. Alasdair MacLean on

    Thanks for the replies bhoys,


    They just posted that latest one today on youtube… which is kinda a prequel to one from last month.


    I’ll pass on the thoughts and comments.



    Will speak later in the week. Been goin now since 05:30 this morn. 17 hours. Heid’s mince.







  16. There are times i wish that nurse would blinking answer :-)



    We know, the Gers know, the Sevs know … cheats never prosper :-)



    Celtic v Valencia is the future … try and enjoy being a Tim … things could be far worse

  17. Nurse!. nurse! here’s all these presents for the kids from the Celtic family


    Oh! and one for you as well as the doctors.


    H.H Mick

  18. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    SAINT STIVS on 17TH DECEMBER 2018 9:49 PM






    i see the guy who tells us what the popes job is is on, so time up for me.






    A Dios.



    With the disastrous scandals surrounding the Hojy Mother Church over the past few decades , its a pity more of us weren`t telling the Pope what his job is.



    Particularly the current Pope.

  19. Kev



    If I may make a correction to your statement that Celtic Board have thrown 4 wise men under the PLC bus at the AGM.



    It is not the 4 guys that have been thrown, it is the principles of fair play and justice they represent as well as shareholders who believe in them that have been put on hold, needlessly based on all available information.



    Our game depends on everyone abiding by the rules. The protracted JPDT is part of those rules and so it either reaches a conclusion or Celtic have failed in their duty to uphold the principles of fair if they allow the SFA to procrastinate much longer.



    Better Celtic start applying pressure than get exposed for failing to.



    There is a Fans Forum in February. I would expect movement by SFA by then to be reported.

  20. Saint Stivs. ………….I was at that game in Lansdowne Rd in the European Cup. Celtic were brilliant beating Waterford 7-0 before sellout 50,000 crowd . Celtic were on their way to a second European Cup final. The word from the police at the time that trouble was caused by. People from the opposite side of Belfast who had infiltrated the crowd.

  21. TT






    How many of Brendan’s signings have been a success, a failure ,or jury is still out?







    Dembele- definite success- may not have been BR though





    Toure- useful short term stopgap but no great playing benefit from him. An influence behind the scenes.





    Sinclair- Definite success in filling a problem position but not these past 18 months.





    Benyu- a punt on a youth prospect- has not made it just like most youth punts





    De Vries- Seemed to be needed but CG rose to the challenge. Has not been needed since Bain arrived. Overall a failure.





    Bain- success- very capable deputy to Craig who is entering his declining years. Bain can hold the fort for a year but I think one of our young keepers, Hazard or Doohan will take the jersey from him.





    Hendry- Not seeing it. Very confident boy- reminds me of Caldwell in that regard but for me, too many defensive weaknesses. Hope he proves me wrong.





    Comper- A waste – mostly of his own making. Having a holiday here like Boerigter- a wage thief.





    Gamboa- ok as a domestic deputy but not any use in Europe.





    Kouassi- Looks a player to most of us but something has gone badly wrong there behind the scenes- his injury no longer provides an excuse. A failure with Celtic but could still be a success somewhere





    Hayes- Still a very decent SPFL level player but, like GMS, unlikely to make it with us





    Edouard- Definite success- not as good (yet) as Dembele but has many good attributes and has contributed. Two recent weaker games do not make him a bad player. He will make critics eat their words.





    Roberts- Definite success- Paddy made James Forrest a better player – while still being good himself between injuries. Won’t make it at Man City but I would jump at buying him at anything around £6m





    Ntcham- Another success. Not yet fully comfortable in our team but one of our better Euro players. Ignore the 2nd half vs Salzburg- most of the team was playing badly. One of the best in our team at protecting the ball, a good passer and is improving in shooting skill. Not an outright Defensive mid- more of a central midfielder.





    Morgan- Good early signs that this boy has the confidence and attack to give it a go. Can look a touch lightweight in Europe but can cope with the SPFL easily. Give him a year more before deciding if he can make the transition to being a regular contributor to the squad and team





    Izziguirre- Good cover for Kieran to spell and rest against weaker SPFL teams. Was always more of a left winger than a left back- he will move on again, when we buy or develop a new left back.





    Arzani- Far too early to tell. The Aussies like him. Let’s see what he can do when fit.





    Benkovic- Brilliant signing- but I suspect he has done too well for Leicester to ignore him or sell to us for the £10m I would sanction





    Mulumbu- Short term cover- has not been needed as often as thought. He might stay as squad back up if Kouassi goes.



    Musonda- definite fail by a good player who believed his own hype. If he realises soon that his talent is not enough on its own- he might yet make it but not at Celtic

  22. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on

    Player purchases.





    Sure things ?


    Certainties ?



    The closer you get to the above , the more you pay.




    My general impression is that in pound sterling terms , Celtic ( P.L. ? ) have done an excellent job in the last few years.


    Not an indepth forensic appraisal , I know .



    The financial health of Celtic is a crucial aspect of running the Club , particularly when we remember the traumas of 20 or so years ago and the arrival of our sugar daddy .

  23. Wish we would forget all about Valencia and the EUROPA Cup.. we have much more important and immediate problems. How do we offload Simonovic, Ntcham, Edouard, Sinclair, Kouassi, Benyu, Gamboa, Bitton, Hendry, Compper, Allan and others that are there to make up the squad.. Get rid and bring Quality right back, centre half, and proven goal scoring centre forward. Let Johnson, Morgan and Arzani (when fit) start and prove if they have it, till the end of the season. We havent spent anything like the money weve taken in on recent transfers.. Foster, Wanyama, Van Dyke, Hooper, Van Dyke again, Armstrong.


    We should be out of sight in this league, only then, should we be looking at the EUROPA League.



  24. SFTB,



    I’d say your analysis is pretty much like mine.



    I’m defo with you that Edouard will be a Mega player for Celtic.



    Wee Jamesie is a feared player in Europe right now. He is easily POTY for me.



    On Sunday too many Times we had the players we want on the ball facing the wrong way. Wee Jamesie is actually expert at turning that around.



    Hey whats wrong with you….



    C’mon the Celts. Great news about young Ryan.