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When exceptional becomes the norm

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As this clean sheet run has continued, every time Fraser Forster has made a good save, I’ve found myself suggesting that the defence is not playing as tightly as it used to.  We quickly regard exceptional performance as the norm.

Fraser has, of course, been exceptional, again, this season.  Efe Ambrose and Virgil van Dijk are fast and commanding.  Virgil has a presence about him, like Wanyama, but bigger.  On the flanks, despite the lack of competition, Emilio Izaguirre is performing at his best, while Adam Matthews, Mikael Lustig and Darnell Fisher have shuffled through the right back position as availability dictates.

I have a notion that Scott Brown is also worth credit for the defensive performance.  He seems to have grown this season, perhaps as a consequence of fitness.  This is his best season yet.

Ultimately the game is all about tactics.  Any team can keep a clean sheet but 10-in-a-row (get used to reading that) is a consequence of team plan, which is where Neil Lennon comes in.

Tomorrow is the final day to confirm tickets for our CQteN St Patrick’s Day Dinner on 14 March at the Kerrydale Suite.  The dinner will raise funds to build a kitchen at Kholoni Primary School in Mchinji, Malawi, where 1200 kids currently attend without food facilities.  If you have lost your invoice email me, celticquicknews@gmail.com

See you there.
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  1. Repost.

     

     

    My friends in Celtic,

     

     

    Great to see JF get a standing ovation and well deserved too.

     

    Great to see a game without wind and rain.

     

    Great for FF and our unbeaten run.

     

     

    Incidentally our park was immaculate for this time of year and that can only assist players like JF. Hats off to our grounds men or for our PC brigade grounds people.

     

     

    HH.

  2. Could also be helped by refs missing penalties but the form bug Fraser is in I would have put my money on him saving it against Hibs!

  3. bognorbhoy oscar in my thoughts/ support the dam 5 on

    last time im gonna hoover at mid day !!!! ….. :-)

     

     

    (unless im told to)

  4. Tim Tanium @ 12.11hrs,

     

     

    Big FF is one mega big bug.

     

     

    A typo : Know what you meant, but gave me a laugh anyway.

     

     

    Cheers.

  5. The Tooting Tim

     

     

    I think those were dismantled in 1945! I know the FA did not allow Chelsea to enter the first big cup, (and they had to wait fifty years to make that happen) but do not know if floodlights, (or headlights if you are in Estonia) were a pre-requisite for entry. Were Hibs ahead of the game in those days, or was it yet more shenanigans from the SFA?

  6. as the Qatar policeman said “Allah,Allah,Allah….what,s all this then? ”

     

     

    braw …(as I wis gobbling doon on a bacon butty! )

  7. “Isn’t it grand Bhoys” to see Emilio back to his best !

     

    His energy, bombing up & down the flank, his tackling, passing

     

    and movement, all a joy to behold again.

     

     

    Broonie….agree with you100% Paul…….

     

    his best season and what a leader on the park!

     

     

    Rollin…Rollin…Rollin

  8. Sunday… What would you prefer? A nervy 1-0 to keep the clean sheet record going or a blistering display of total football ending 8-1 to the hoops?

  9. eddieinkirkmichael on

    What’s not to like about our football at the moment? Some very good players playing a team game and excelling, in what is actually a good standard for SPFL teams of recent years.

     

    I somehow get the feeling that this team just needs a little tweaking to certain areas like central midfield and up front and we will maybe scale the dizzy heights of getting out the group stages of CL next season.

     

    A good time to be a Celtic fan, I just hope we can hang on to young Forrest for a couple more seasons.

  10. LiviBhoy - God bless wee Oscar on

    On the subject of Hibs in the European Cup.

     

    My Hibernian correspondent at work reckons it was because they had floodlights they were invited.

     

    Hibs were keen to play in it too. I am interested to find out if Celtic were interested and if the SFA either refused or if our ground wasn’t up to scratch.

     

     

    LB

  11. Good game last night really enjoyed it team playing well, the guys that have stopped going for the millions reasons they come up with – your missing out HH

     

    Wee side note

     

    Put a coupon on last night

     

    Celtic -2

     

    Aston villa- win

     

    Spurs/city-btts

     

    Chelsea-1

     

    Chelsea 39 shots no goals

     

    When your lucks out it’s out HH

  12. Green Lantern (((((0))))) on

    Celtic – Total Football

     

     

    Sevco – Total Pish

     

     

    You know it makes sense.

  13. yorkbhoy,

     

     

    Good quandary, I don’t know. Probably, and going against everything I stand for, a nervy 1-0 to keep the clean sheet.

     

     

    Sad I know for someone who always advocates more flair and entertaining football.

     

     

    HH. cantbelieveisaidthatcsc.

  14. Solid defense is always supported by good midfield play – see MOTD last night for analysis of how the two Spurs central midfielders were found wanting by Man City.

     

     

    Brown and Ledley do a great job of covering the back four It’s the type of unglamorous work that often gets missed – but is vital to keeping clean sheets.

  15. TootingTim supports Wee Oscar on

    Celtic Mac

     

     

    From UEFA.com – had forgotten it wasn’t their baby to begin with:

     

     

    Whereas many of UEFA’s founder members were more interested in establishing a national team competition, the French sports daily L’Equipe and their then-editor Gabriel Hanot, were championing the cause for a European-wide club competition. Hanot, together with colleague Jacques Ferran, designed a blueprint for a challenge tournament to be played on Wednesdays under floodlights.

     

     

    The tournament initiated by L’Equipe did not stipulate that the participating teams had to be champions of their country, but they invited clubs who they considered had the most fan appeal. Representatives of 16 clubs were invited to meetings on 2 and 3 April 1955 and the L’Equipe rules were unanimously approved. The first European Champion Clubs’ Cup fixture was played in Lisbon and Sporting Clube de Portugal were held to a 3-3 draw by FK Partizan.

  16. LiviBhoy - God bless wee Oscar on

    I would take rakes of goals every single time over a 1-0.

     

    8-5 at the weekend would do me against St Mirren.

     

    One of the best games I was ever at was at Brockville in the 90’s. 5-4 to the Hoops and we got a last minute winner through John Collins. I have been to a lot of cup finals games abroad and big matches but that one always stands out.

     

    Goals are the key for me. Take an exciting 5-4 over a 1-0 any day of the week.

     

     

    LB

  17. In the Fantasy world of the Laptop Loyal

     

     

    Rangers fans seek cash vow at Wallace summit

     

     

    RANGERS supporters will seek new assurances from chief executive Graham Wallace about the club’s finances today – as Lee Wallace edged nearer the exit.

     

     

    Sky Bet Championship club Nottingham Forest have had two bids – the second believed to be for £1million – for Wallace turned down.

     

     

    But there is mounting speculation the Scotland left-back will be allowed to leave if an offer of £1.5million is received.

     

     

    http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/rangers-fans-seek-cash-vow-at-wallace-summit-150246n.23307892

     

     

     

     

    In Reality…

     

     

    Sky Sports understands Southampton defender Danny Fox has agreed to join Nottingham Forest on loan with a view to a permanent move. Nottingham Forest boss Billy Davies has been looking to bring a new left-back in for some time and it appears he has got his man in Fox.

     

     

    http://www1.skysports.com/transfer-centre/

  18. The inaugural Big Cup took place in 1955/56 with Hibs as the Scottish participants, even ‘tho Aberdeen were the reigning champions and Hibs had only finished fourth behind Celtic and the huns.

     

     

    HH!!

  19. dksglen

     

     

    12:26 on 30 January, 2014

     

     

    If a winning team playing good football and scoring goals at will can’t get the fans through the door nothing will mate, looks like it’s back to the 90s when only the diehards go week in week out and the rest turn up for the “big games” HH

  20. Greenpinata Livibhoy

     

     

    I like the idea of the run continuing but I would go for 8-1… But a 1-0 would still be very pleasing

  21. TheOriginalSadiesBhoy on

    steinreignedsupreme

     

     

    12:26 on 30 January, 2014

     

    TheOriginalSadiesBhoy 12:04 on 30 January, 2014

     

     

    ‘Honest’ Harry Redknapp.

     

    ………………………………………..

     

    Maybe there is something in the Sky ‘transfer window deadline’ advert after all when Jim White exhorts Harry to ‘come and join us’. :-))

     

     

    Not even ‘Arry is daft enough to pay £1.5 million for Super Lee Wallace. Actually I think Graham Wallace is trying to ensure that no one will buy Wallace and thus bail them out so that they can hit the skids as quickly as possible for Admin Day.

  22. LiviBhoy - God bless wee Oscar on

    yorkbhoy

     

     

    Records are nice but fans want to be entertained. I would prefer to see us score 8 than score 1 and keep a clean sheet.

     

     

    LB

  23. Just passing through to say…

     

    ________________________

     

     

    Gordon_J backing Neil Lennon

     

     

    12:23 on 30 January, 2014

     

     

    Brown and Ledley do a great job of covering the back four It’s the type of unglamorous work that often gets missed – but is vital to keeping clean sheets.

     

    _____________________________________________________

     

    I’m not nit-picking but, 2 defensive midfielders in the SPFL ?

     

    That’s no far off Wattenaccio’s bus-parking stuff. imho

     

     

    Btw, Wim played wi one defensive midfielder(Paul Lambert) and, won the Double v’s the richest or, most expensively assembled huns team in history, as well as some other decent domestic competition. imho

     

     

    All credit to big FF and the rest of the defenders for, the clean sheet run.

     

    The secret is – not to get hung up about it. imho

     

     

    Only saying – Hail Hail

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