A Challenge?

Morning,all.

Well,that’s the international breaks over for this year,at last. We still have another one due this season,in March,but until then we can get on with some proper football. Can’t wait,if I’m honest.

We have eight games to go in the league between now and the end of the year,plus two European ties and a League Cup Final. Eleven games in total. All inside thirtysix days. That’s a punishing schedule by any standards,and it could put a heavy strain on our playing resources. As always,I’ll be hoping that Lenny takes advantage of the quality and quantity he has available to him in the squad and uses a few of these games to allow some of our players a breather,while giving others on the fringes the chance to impress.

And as always,I’ll expect to be disappointed as he sticks with the tried and trusted,a tactic with which he is comfortable and one that he clearly picked up from his mentor,Martin. Martin was a firm believer in playing his best eleven as often as possible,with players generally only dropping out due to injuries and suspensions. But sometimes,in my opinion,you have to shake things up a bit,sometimes you have to realise that players can get a bit jaded-especially with such a punishing schedule.

The league season is 38 matches long. By the time the huns trundle up to Celtic Park,that’s exactly how many competitive games we will have played by then. Two days short of New Year!

But mustn’t grumble,really. In the 27 matches to date,we have only lost twice-once against Cluj,which wrecked our Champions League aspirations for another season,and the infamous no-show horror show against Livingston in the league. Aye,we’ve also had one or two disappointing displays-Hibs and Dunfermline spring to mind right away-but overall,we can be fairly happy at this stage. A domestic Final just around the corner,a controlling stake in our Europa League group-including two famous victories against Lazio and a superb performance against Cluj-and sitting pretty at the top of the league with 31 points from 36 and a ridiculous goal difference of +29.

What’s not to like?

Well it’s hardly our fault that such a high points and goals return in the league hasn’t got us running away with it,but the huns are matching that pace point for point and very nearly goal for goal. Even I can’t blame the board for that one-though I hold them responsible to a high degree for their very existence,an argument for another day. So how are they achieving that,considering that few if any of us would have any of their players near our squad?

There are a number of reasons for this,in my opinion. And yes,some-though not all-of them involve the usual paranoid Tim stuff,but we have had good reason for this over the years,and rarely have we been wrong.

For starters,the SPFL fixture computer has been uncommonly kind to them,but that will even itself out in the next ten games as both teams will each have faced the opposition home and away. We will see how the land lies at the end of it,and draw some comparison at that point. Another obvious point is that they are being refereed differently,the most obvious point being the number of yellow cards they receive-absolutely minimal-and the number their opponents receive-virtually every third foul. Our opponents get booked once every nine fouls,and that usually includes a late flurry to balance things out after them being allowed to use us as punchbags for the rest of the game.

Look at the difference in approach from Livingston,as an example. They were scared to go near a Rangers player for fear of a card,but they certainly didn’t have that concern against us. These are major over the course of a season-we will suffer injuries and suspensions due to how we are refereed,you can bet your bottom dollar that the huns won’t. Even Morelos has hardly been booked this season,and it’s not like the snarling thug has had a Damascene conversion! More likely,someone has had a word or six-and not with him,by the way,unless they are fluent in Spanish. Yes,he can be a little bit silly at times,that sort of thing. Remember,the huns have got form for this-in their previous incarnation,Sir Walter of Cardigan would often mention the small squad size,that they couldn’t afford suspensions. His word was their command,of course.

But here’s probably the most important reason that they’re still hanging onto our bootlaces. Scottish football is regularly decried as a long ball and no football league. And guess what? That’s exactly the type of game the huns play. Now,if it was a long ball and no football league,surely every other team would be able to cope with such a game plan? After all,they would be playing against similar teams every week! But no,it seems to unsettle them,they can’t cope with a get it up the park as soon as possible approach. Two dropped points in eleven matches against opposition other than us suggests that they have hit on a winning formula,one straight out of the Dave ‘Harry’ Bassett school of not-much-thought. But if it’s working,and it ain’t broken,why fix it? It’s certainly ideal for some of the heavy pitches they can expect in a Scottish winter,and also for that plastic guff at a quarter of our league grounds.

So,what am I saying? I’m saying that a third of the way into the season we haven’t shaken them off. They have a system that works and they are getting the benefit of refereeing which subdues the opposition. The other teams that have challenged over the years-teams like Aberdeen,or Hearts,Hibs,Kilmarnock-have all gone backwards alarmingly. We have got a challenge for our title,whether we believe they are deserving or not. Are we better than them? Of course we are-but that league table tells an alarming story at the moment.

******

Above article by BMCUWP. We always welcome contributions from our members on here,so if you want us to post your thoughts as Article of the Day,we always publish. Don’t worry about the presentation,we can tidy it up if necessary. Just mail it to Mahe,let us do the rest.

sentinelcelts@gmail.com

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big packy

MORNING ALL, bobby good article as usual, but you are missing something, the Scottish establishment with all the ludge members will make sure their team will win something this year, you know it I know it and the dugs in the street know it.hh p.s.after last night and a glorious victory for my second team, im going to join the tartan army, that bloke from Ayrshire is taking us places.??

Bobby, yes it’s very disappointing how those 4 teams have regressed. I’m no fan of Kilmarnock but at least under Steve Clarke they seemed up for it. I’m beginning to wish he had stayed where he was. Whatever tactical skills he has worked for Kilmarnock. Less so for Scotland. Says me after Scotland win 3-1 🙂

Hearts and Hibs are in flux. Maybe they will come good.

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BIGPACKY

I did mention the referees,mate. Made a point of it. They will certainly do their best,that’s for sure.

It’s up to us,because the other teams aren’t looking likely to help us out much this season.

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JIMTHETIM53

I’m starting to think Stevie wishes he was still at Kilmarnock too! Had he been,the managerial merry-go-round down south would probably seen him down there again by now. But by taking the Scotland job,he might as well have simply called it a delayed early retirement.

Fan A Tic, Re. your post at 1.47am. I couldn’t agree more. But we have a problem, the players want to play for their countries! Regardless of the deficiencies in the national set up. Countless Celtic players are proud of their Scottish caps in their trophy cabinets.

I’m not keen on the Scotland team. Mainly because it’s an SFA child. But also the history of it. The Scotland management in the past who were reluctant to play Celtic players. Jimmy McGrory springs to mind. A goal machine. 7 (seven) caps! An absolute disgrace. They preferred to field players playing in England rather than Celts. Strachan learned too late that his best team included more than a couple of Celts. Was he afraid of being seen to favour players from his ex club?

Chairbhoy

Good Morning fholks…

Huge apologies to the ghuys who welcomed me at the weekend and weren’t acknowlegded – as stated, don’t get the same time to post these days but thanks to…

Big packy

Auldheid…

…It doesnt look good.

BMCUWP

Mahe…

“I see that rogue Chairbhoy sauntered inside.
Happy days Ive admired your posts for years. Many a sharp mind on these pages Im warning ye, and the word chair in your name makes me think youre fond of sitting on yer arse ! Its men of action we need not men of cushions !
Be keepin a close eye.

Rather ominious from Auldheid:( and as for Mahe… it was more if a traipse;) and I know!?

In all seriousness you ghuys have a great site and it’s still very “vital”, an ingredient a lot of forums have lost over the past few Seasons, for any number of reasons, so…

Keep~on~keeping~on

BMCUWP…

Excellent piece – A challenge!! Does our challenges define us??

I stated at the beginning of the season that a weaker Celtic will be facing an improved Rangers this season…

Of course the notion was poo poo’d by many.

Now, you are quite right, Celtic are better than Rangers.

Also the fact is Lenny has improved greatly as a manager, maybe in large part due to the set-up and staff he has had at Celtic this time round.

Whatever the reason we are playing, for the most part, some excellent, entertaining football.

Yet there are many unique factors, as you point out, in Scottish football and the fact that we are a “glitch” away from letting an unprecedented quadruple treble go, is to my mind, tragic.

Some eighteen months ago we had the option to set where our challenges lay – Ajax or Rangers.

No doubt the Boards decision has brought an energy and thrill back to domestic football (shame about the other “challengers” falling away – lacking ambition?) For me they took the wrong road but I am lovin’ the football this season and will be enjoying the first all new, “old firm”, cup final.

Next month is no undoubtedly Celtic’s most important in domestic football for eight years and by the new year we will know if we have a new era in Scottish Football.

Hold tight…

Hail Hail

big packy

CHAIRBHOY, nice to see you posting?

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Got to laugh at the DR,asking former players to predict how Celtic and the huns will do in the league between now and New Year. Their idea of balance is a died in the wool Ayrshire bluenose-I’ve seen it close up,it could have your eye out!-Hugh Burns,and a wee turncoat bastert that may well have perjured himself in a court case defending a cowardly attack on a Celtic player.

Natch,the huns-two home games out of seven-only drop two points,while we-five home games out of eight-drop four. Wish I was their bookie.

big packy

cant believe there is a poster on here decrying the Scotland team ,and to make matters worse he is from Lanarkshire like myself ,absolutely beggars belief ,wont name names, but he was born the same year as me. 53 ??

Packy, I gave my reasons. Also, it’s not so much the team but the National set up I dislike. 🙂

A bit like Club v PLC

m6bhoy

I wasn’t aware of the bookings per foul stats difference when teams play us compared to when they play Sevco. But that’s not the only difference is it? Just how many fifty/fifties, do they also get compared to us?

The fact they receive favourable treatment from officials will of course surprise no-one. However, we also have to accept that the board’s lamentable failure to challenge the continuity myth and perpetuate the OF bigotry model, has only served to encourage our enemies to take even more feckin’ liberties with sporting integrity and a level playing field. I predicted a few seasons ago on CQN and other fora that the powers that be would not allow us to achieve TIAR as long as we continue to be happy to sit at the back of bus. Sadly, as a club, we are now not even allowed a seat on the bus – we are crammed in the bit of the bus where the cases are packed away so it should not be a surprise that the rest of the bus are taken up by the masons in black (or whatever colour they wear these days.

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CHAIRBHOY

Welcome aboard,old son. And thanks for the compliments!

I was in bed when you posted a couple of days ago,night shift. I mailed Mahe with an explanation behind your moniker-though I quite like his too!

You’re right,the stars have aligned for the southside zombies to be able to hang on to our coat-tails. This time last season,there was a genuine confidence that almost any team they played could take two or three points off them. But with the desperate drop in quality overall in that period,that is no longer the case. And the confidence that gives them makes it even less likely the longer their run continues.

And that,well,that has given the refs the confidence that their favourable interpretations will bear fruit. A perfect storm,if you will. It won’t be a walkover,thats for sure. It may even fall down to them having to play one of the top six three times away from home to balance out the 19H 19A.

Or just going bust again…

Either way,I think this is their best chance-and their last. If they don’t get over the line this season,I think they’re done. Same as in 2009,10,11. All or nothing,shit or bust.

big packy

JIM, only joking, to be honest I agree with what you said?

big packy

sorry for the duplicate post, it happened twice last night, the page would not load then came back with a server message.hh.

So Packy, now we know! YOU broke the blog.

big packy

OK JIM, it was me, but don’t tell mahe or bobby?

Ha Ha 🙂

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M6BHOY

We badly need a board that will fight our corner,stand up to injustice whether real or perceived. We know we don’t have one,and the proof of that-hardly necessary for most of us-will arrive a week tomorrow.

Think back to The Season of Honest Mistakes. Now,I’ll admit we were far from brilliant that season,but I’ll also contend that the heart was knocked right out of the players by the refereeing deficiencies that season. Tony Mowbray wouldn’t have been my choice for the job-mainly because of the sad death of his wife Bernadette a few years earlier. I thought that coming back would be too emotional for him-it was,after all,the reason he asked to leave as a player.

But Tony Mowbray,the player,was no shrinking violet. Never shirked anything in his life. And he’d done well to get on as a manager too,though settling for a 1-0 defeat as Hibs manager still rankles. It got his team into Europe,screwed us when we needed a bit of help.

Take it on the chin and move on,he would say after every setback-mostly referee-influenced. Now some may say this is a bit of a reach,but I’ve always wondered where that level of self-control came from. I’m fairly positive that it wasn’t how he actually felt at the time. That it wasn’t him being the guy we always remembered from before.

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BIGPACKY

Haven’t a clue why there are a few accessibility problems with the site over the last twelve hours or so. I assume it’s the hosting server letting us down,as has happened in the past.

Pain in the arse,whatever it is. Mahe will probably contact them later about it.

Chairbhoy

BMCUW @ 08:34 am,

There are a couple of factors at play that would make me weary of the Ibrox lot this Season…

They compete in Europe, that gives…

Their players experience/confidence playing at a higher level

More money

Sellable assets

Another factor is this…

Their main shareholders and Board members put £7M into the Club by transfering debt to equity.

How much did our main shareholders and Board take OUT of the Club in; dividends, salary, expenses, bonuses.!? Could be getting on for a similar figure.

Make no mistake, these things as well as Scottish Football’s “uniqueness” are equilisers…

Thanks for explaining to Mahe, I’ve long since forgotten that many will not know where the nome-de-blog comes from.

Wycombe Wanderers are doing great this season MO’Nesque. The locals petrified that the likes of Spurs or Stevie Ray Vaughan are going to take our Gareth away:)))) Promotion this Season would be a huge game changer.

Hail Hail

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CHAIRBHOY

I’m actually quite ambivalent about investors taking a return from the club,but I think that 6% guaranteed is way over the top in the current era. However,our shares are AAA in comparison to their junk bonds. I’ll always give credit to the board for their financial results-I just don’t like the way it has been achieved over the years.

The main reason for their sustained challenge this year is the lack of challenge from elsewhere. Winning gives confidence,playing at the higher level,as you point out,does the same. IMO,it will go to the wire,or near enough. Everything will be thrown AT us and TO them.

But heyho,we are used to it. We’ve done it before,and we’ll do it again,as we used to sing back in the day.
*
Re Gareth Ainsworth,he is doing a great job there. The bookies are getting wise now,but it took them a while,like two seasons ago too. Is he still officially a player-manager? He’s well into his forties now,surely?

Anyway,fingers crossed for Championship football for you next year,mate.

Margaret McGill

Jose Mourinho has been appointed Tottenham manager
I wish him all the success like had at ManU

Margaret McGill

On Nov 27th
Trust me
Most Celtic supporters will willingly take it up the arse
To invite proper governance of Scottish football means never being able to whine about the fucking huns ever again and that just wont do. We(e) Green huns need something to hate.
Something to do with catholic schools and self flagellation.
Conversely, the Celtic PLC sees res 12 as nothing but a bunch of uppity peasants threatening the gravy train and that just wont do.
The frog and the scorpion until death shall we be.

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MAGS

Mourinho was like a breath of fresh air when he first arrived in England. He’s an anachronism now. Levy has made a huge mistake,even apart from the £40m or so needed to pay up the contracts of the existing coaching staff.

Very strange appointment from Spurs

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MAGS

We don’t hate. We just despair.

Margaret McGill

I see GCHQ and Twitter are helping the Tories. Quelle suprise.

Margaret McGill

Bobby
Some despair but most hate and are willing to pay

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MAGS

Quite possible that GCHQ are helping,but the outrageous rebranding last night was by CCHQ,Conservative Campaign Headquarters.

Bigrailroadblues

Good afternoon all from the Govanhill bayou country.

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BIGRAILROADBLUES

STAR BAR branched out into gumbo and jambalaya?

Surely that will be more than an extra 50p?

Chairbhoy

BMCUW @ 10:09 am,

Yes, you are quite right, our fiscal prudence is something we are rightly proud of.

Also the shares that pay dividends, the money raised went towards paying for the Stadium rebuild. Whatever roi those shares realisd, it is dwarfed by the coloßal benefit that investment made to Celtic Football Club.

Yet on CQN last week I put a link to a piece by Rangers Hugh Adam…

https://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/adam-shakes-ibrox-pillars-with-warning-of-bankruptcy-1-595808

The purpose of which was to nail the lie that Real Rangers Men weren’t warned of the impending doooom. Also last weeks revisionist nonsense that some how StDM was wronged by the big bad Tax Service.

However, the piece is worth a read from the Celtic perspective. Hugh Adam had obviously done a lot of research into “old firm” financials and was a very insightful person…

“Almost certainly viewed as an even more heinous offence would be Adam’s claim that Celtic are run much more competently and that investment in the Parkhead club would be a much sounder proposition for anyone wishing to purchase shares in a football institution

‘Fergus was the most unjustly maligned man in the history of the game, when you consider that he took the club from bankruptcy into the mainstream and built that stadium along the way.

‘NOW, the Celtic board have more financial heavyweights than Rangers, with people like Brian Quinn, Dermot Desmond and Sir Patrick Sheehy.

True, Mr Adam was defending to a certain extent Celtic’s “buscuit tin” memtality, but there’s more than that.

This was 2002, we had a stadium to pay for, an academy to build and loans to service. So it shows that for well over two decades Celtic have been incredibly well run Club and fholk like Brian Quinn has come and gone and DD is still here.

My beef would be with current executives who would like to take the credit for this and a huge chunk of money as a reward.

Certainly Rangers competition has melted away, (that has been the effect of the old firm on Scottish football I’m afraid) yet they have definietly improved and relative to us are getting more bang for their (very dodgy) buck.

There was a time when Celtic were competitive with Rangers even though we could only spend a fiver for every tenner they spent;)

Would hate to see those roles reversed.

Hail Hail

 

Bigrailroadblues

Mick, J.C. Fogerty is on today. They’ll probably bump it up to a fiver.

fan-a-tic

Jimthetim53
In my opinion Strachan just decided he couldn’t win and please the SFA or best wee country so said F-it and picked the Celtic players albeit to late.
The fact he just failed at the final hurdle was a relief and convenient excuse for the SFA huns to replace him with a useless hun coach who would not countenance any Timmy success.
Personal preference/bias over country has always been the hun way.

big packy

BIGRAILROADBLUES welcome, I have not forgotten that pint I promised you next time im home?

Bigrailroadblues
Welcome
HH

Bigrailroadblues

Thanks guys. Mrs BRRB has dragged me to the world buffet. Happy days. ?

BRRB, Hope you give that Pizza Express that Prince Andrew uses a miss. 🙂

Bigrailroadblues

Jim, never been in one. Never will now, he’s put me right off.?

Just shows you he’s a man of the people, no Michelin starred restaurants for him!

(Boak!)

fan-a-tic

Bigrailroadblues
Welcome.
HH

Coneybhoy

the burger van outside Celtic Park sells gourmet food i think.

well it does have 4 Michelins…….

Coneybhoy, several years ago I used to work around Glasgow some days. At lunchtime I headed for the Burger van outside CP many times. Was never disappointed. Yummy.

Didn’t know it had 4 stars mind you. LOL. 🙂

Auldheid

Imagine you have an opponent to catch in a marathon.

He is better than you unless you dope yourself up.

Imagine you get caught for doping yourself up to run past the rest of the field and reach second spot.

Imagine the sanction is to drop you back into the middle of the race and nothing more.

How big a deterrent is that not to keep taking the dope?

The changes to dealing with insolvency, unless points deductions whether 15 or 25 for an insolvency event are carried into following seasons are the equivalent of the above.

A team doping itself above a sustainable level from genuine football and football related income is most likely as a result to gain more points than all its rivals bar perhaps the top club that it is trying to overtake.

So a 15 or even a 25 point deduction risks nothing other than dropping back into mid table to try the same again.

Why other clubs or their supporters dont realise that they are likely to lose points as a result, Kille and Livi last some this season but not last, and demand Domestic FFP and why Celtic put up with the moral hazard and financial risk to them of the new insolvency rules is a bit of a mystery if no carry over from one season to next of points deduction until an offending club acts sustainably.

Oglach

We have a challenge because the PLC want a challenge from Sevco – it is in the interest of the club. Otherwise Celtic FC could have placed a chasm between us and Sevco with the simple application of spending a bit more of the horde of cash they are so proud of.

Oglach

Clickbait sites claiming Southampton want circa £10 mill for Mohamed Elyounoussi. If true will Pete put his hands in ‘our pockets’ and stump up some of our cash, and what about another striker as a late Xmas pressie? Given the choice between big Vic and Mo Elyounoussi I would be tempted to sign Victor. Just an opinion.

big packy

EVENING ALL, as its a bit quiet on here a little story, when I moved down to Liverpool in the 70s I was playing in a dance band, me on drums, john on bass and Andrew on piano/keyboards, yes Andrew you could never call him andy he went berserk?that was the rhythm section, we stuck together, now the brass and reed sections thought they were above us, because they were all classically trained, they hardly spoke to us only at rehersals, anyway the only time they all spoke to me, was to get me to say in my Scottish accent, two adverts that were on the tv at the time, one was Duncan mcrae, with a massive porridge bowl in his hand, saying do you no think this bowl is kinda wee, the other was something about a guy saying to this lady, aye mrs munro, now I had to say this to keep them amused,small minds.but they loved the accent?

Margaret McGill

Auldheid
What if the dope tester is a bigger dope addict than the dopee and is a bit of a dope ?

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