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Where we are and the way forward

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Celtic are well behind the position they should be at this stage of the football cycle which started in the summer of 2014.  This week’s two defeats are a symptom of that.  A year ago, then-new signings Armstrong and Mackay-Stevens contributed to two highly credible performances against Inter Milan, which indicated we were on a positive trajectory, but pretty much every available indication since has pointed south.

Aberdeen were poor in the first half last night, but shortly before their opening goal om 31 minutes I noted that they were defending comfortably, despite our dominance.  We had not made a chance which tested them.  We often need a lot of possession before the goals flow.

There is a flip side to that ratio.  We often lose a lot of goals compared to the possession we allow opponents.  All teams take a direct approach to attacking Celtic – get it forward and shoot. Better still, win a corner.  Football games are about two things: scoring goals and not conceding goals.  Some work is being done on the former but I’m concerned our shape does not accommodate the achievement of the latter.

We’ve kept 4 clean sheets (Kilmarnock, St Johnstone, Partick, Stranraer ) in the 18 games since beating Dundee United 5-0 in October.  Only Thistle (1-0), Dundee (6-0) and Dundee United (5-0) have lost at Celtic Park without scoring since…………… Ross County on 1 August.

Records will show that yet again we lost a crucial goal at a corner kick.  What will be lost in time is the sheer panic caused by the Aberdeen corners which didn’t result in a goal.  I’ve never seen a team defend set pieces so poorly over such an extended period.

There could be many reasons why we’re not in the Champions League knock out stages right now, but I’m sure the reasons we’re not comfortably ahead in the league is that defensively, our shape and organisation is not good enough.  We concede too much space in dangerous areas.  This is why we’re not miles ahead of a team with vastly weaker resources.

On the way forward:

It’s of the upmost importance we win the league.  As it stands, we will achieve this.  Colin Kazim-Richards, despite being of journeyman-pro stock, gave us a dimension we’ve not had in 18 months.  He, Kris Commons, Ryan Christie, Patrick Roberts and Erik Sviatchenko will all have a positive impact on the remainder of the season.

Ronny has got a lot wrong, but he was right about one thing after the game last night, “The players need the fans’ support”.  Those who suggest that anytime is a good time for recriminations probably don’t have a good grasp on the complexities of any given situation.  There will be plenty of time for recrimination in June, right now, we need to keep our eye on the prize.

Win the league, then we’ll talk.

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734 Comments

  1. tommytwiststommyturns on

    Ffos Las abandoned!

     

     

    Leicester winning 3-0….you could have had 5/1 before the game just for the win!!

     

     

    T4

  2. Fleagle

     

    as ffos las abbandoned

     

    can i pick another donkry in

     

    Bertiewhittle 3:30 Lingfield

  3. CQN Saturday Naps Competition : WEEK 28 results (Feb 6th)

     

     

    Winners:

     

     

    twists n turns (Rivellino) @7/1

     

    fleagle1888 (Realize) @6/1

     

    16 roads (Le Reve) @4/1

     

    Eurochamps67 (Le Reve) @4/1

     

    Rockon (Le Reve) @4/1

     

     

    Losers:

     

     

    21-5-79 (no selection)

     

    Angel Gabrial (Chris Pea Green)

     

    BMCUWP (Chris Pea Green)

     

    bonbhoy (Road to Riches)

     

    Bull67 (Chris Pea Green)

     

    Burgas Hoops (Wicklow Lad)

     

    Cathal (Bitofapuzzle)

     

    Cosy Corner Bhoy (no selection)

     

    Dim Sam (Tea for Two)

     

    El Madrigal (Renard)

     

    Fastbhoy (no selection)

     

    gerryfaethebrig (Perceous)

     

    Graffitionthewall (Another Mattie)

     

    green T (Cold as Ice)

     

    Gweedore Celt (Definitly Red)

     

    hashadenough (no selection)

     

    leftclicktic (Bertiewhittle)

     

    Nye Beavans RS (Perceous)

     

    Onemalloy (Renard)

     

    PFayr (Summery Justice)

     

    Som mes que un club (Another Mattie)

     

    The Bhoy from the Village (Pont Alexandre)

     

    TheBarcaMole (First Lieutenant)

     

    Thunder Road (no selection)

     

    tommytwiststommyturns (Medinas)

     

    voguepunter (Lunar Deity)

     

    What is the Stars (Zabana)

     

    Zihuatanejo (Friendly Royal)

     

     

    Cheers, fleagle1888

     

    (—Beirut CSC—)

  4. CQN Saturday Naps Competition : WEEK 28 Standings

     

     

    Another flip-flopping week at the top, as 16 roads sticks his nose in front of Zihuatanejo… well done to twists with a 7/1 winner !

     

     

    +20.75 > 16 roads (8)

     

    +19.50 > Zihuatanejo (5)

     

    +10.00 > Nye Beavans RS (6)

     

    +8.33 > bonbhoy (5)

     

    +7.75 > Rockon (6)

     

    +5.50 > BMCUWP (5)

     

    +4.83 > hashadenough (7)

     

    +1.58 > El Madrigal (5)

     

    +0.45 > leftclicktic (5)

     

     

    -0.50 > Graffitionthewall (6)

     

    -2.13 > gerryfaethebrig (5)

     

    -4.50 > twists n turns (3)

     

    -5.00 > Angel Gabrial (4)

     

    -6.83 > green T (6)

     

    -8.10 > Eurochamps67 (5)

     

    -8.50 > Cosy Corner Bhoy (3)

     

    -8.90 > fleagle1888 (4)

     

    -9.00 > tommytwiststommyturns (2)

     

    -9.25 > PFayr (4)

     

    -9.88 > Bull67 (4)

     

    -12.00 > Burgas Hoops (3)

     

    -13.00 > Gweedore Celt (1)

     

    -13.50 > TheBarcaMole (2)

     

    -14.13 > Fastbhoy (4)

     

    -15.00 > voguepunter (2)

     

    -16.50 > The Bhoy from the Village (2)

     

    -16.55 > Onemalloy (3)

     

    -16.95 > Thunder Road (3)

     

    -17.00 > Cathal (1)

     

    -18.13 > What is the Stars (3)

     

    -20.75 > Som mes que un club (2)

     

    -22.63 > Dim Sam (2)

     

    -28.00 > 21-5-79 (0)

     

     

    Cheers, fleagle1888

     

    (—Beirut CSC—)