Livingston v Celtic Preview
First of all,my grateful thanks to THE GOMBEEN MAN for yesterday’s outstanding piece of work. It really shows what we are up against when you see the actual work being done by the club,as compared to how our actions are being reported. I’m only sorry that today’s article can’t live up to such high standards!
We return tonight to the bread and butter of League football after a couple of sojourns into cup territory. Away to Livingston at “The Spaghettihad” and a match which will be difficult in so many ways. Firstly,there’s that dreadful pitch-which means that we are unlikely to see Jozo playing-and there’s the robust manner in which tonight’s opponents tend to go about their business. Add to that their impressive home form,and a chance to go above Aberdeen in the table,and only a point off a European place,and I think it’s fair to say that we won’t be expecting a stroll in the park tonight. A carpet crawl to three points will do us! Especially when you bear in mind that we haven’t even scored at their ground since their return to the top division almost two years ago and we got a pretty severe doing the last time we were there.
Christopher Jullien is probably still having nightmares about his last visit late last year. Although he has been an excellent signing for us-at both ends of the pitch!-he was absolutely ragdolled by Lyndon Dykes that day. Dykes is a big lad,puts himself about and is always available but Jullien has a good few inches on him and should have been able to match up,at worst. He failed miserably that day,and he will want to make amends tonight.
To be fair to him,he wasn’t the only Celtic player posted missing that day. You can argue that we were unlucky to lose against the huns in December-although I wouldn’t-but we certainly got what we deserved 100 days ago,which was no goals,no points and a sheracking from the fans. They may have surprised us that day,but there can be no excuses tonight.
I have no idea of who will be available tonight as there has been little information on the injury front since Sunday’s cup tie against a somewhat fired up St Johnstone. I suspect that James Forrest will be offered a rest after being on the receiving end that day,as will Greg Taylor. Broonie will probably be asked whether he is fit enough to play,and will take his place regardless. You’d have to cut his legs off to keep him away from a blood and snotters match like tonight. Griff I’m not too sure about,he looked a little off the pace on Sunday,but he is always a player for the occasion and I’m sure he’d love to score against his first club. Strange to think that he made his debut for them as long ago as 2006,he’s certainly been around for a while. And as for Ryan Christie,he will certainly be keen to make amends for screwing up in November. In fact,his disciplinary record overall has not been that good this season and I think he needs to work on that-though he was certainly hard done to in the SFA kangaroo court in January.
Hatem Elhamed may be available for tonight’s match,though it would surely be an act of folly to risk an injury prone player on a night like this and on such a surface. He has only played four league games for us this season and I think we need to take some care with him. So given the above plus Lenny’s current penchant for three at the back,I’m going to suggest that tonight’s line up will be
Bitton Ajer Jullien
Frimpers Broonie CalMac Christie Hayes
I’d expect the subs bench to include Elhamed and Bauer,plus Rogic,Ollie and Jamesie. Cover as many injury possibilities as possible. Tonight is not a night to give the huns a glimmer of hope. They are in deep despair at the moment and we should be throwing them an anchor,not a lifebelt. It’s a night for winning,no matter how beautiful or ugly. We want three points to banish the memories of that shocker 100 days ago. I’ll take them whichever way we get them!
Above article by BMCUWP. Usual rules,if you have something to say then please let us know. Subject to legal advice,we are always happy to publish your contributions! Mail Mahe at
Link to yesterday’s article,as reference above,for anyone who missed it.
Was a great piece, done with great sensitivity, from TGM, but not a subject I want to talk about at least until all the facts are known. I think we all know there are a group of people who aren’t thinking about this in terms of helping any victims of abuse, no their motivation is to see us morally & financially bankrupted by it …how sick is that? So, I’d rather not speculate without all facts.
Looking forward to our first win in Livingston for 13years! Hope Calmac, Forrest & The big Norse God make it. I see young Luca is in the squad(?) I’d like to see a few more before the end of the season.
Think some could get some first team action, without it being too detrimental to the team …might even get a few surprises!
I read that,that we hadn’t won there since 2007. I didn’t check it out,though I’m prepared to believe it. It’s almost as though our team bus goes whizzing past the junction and carries on to Edinburgh!
Agree about El Hamed, Bobby. I don’t like these pitches and would be reluctant to put him in tonight. As is usual every time we have to play on astro, I’m spending more time worrying about the surface, than I am about the opposition.
0-1 & no injuries, I would consider that a good night’s work.
Haven’t been to Livinston for about 15 years, what’s the chances of getting tickets outside the ground??
Bobby, obviously they weren’t in the top league every year(?) I believe it is correct, though I did read it about 10 times to be sure ? We will correct that tonight, mate!
In our current treble treble run, hopefully soon quadruple.
Livingston have,by far, the best record against us.
We have played them 5 times.
We have won twice, drew twice ( includes a nil nil at Celtic Park ) and have lost once.
No other team, in the top league comes close.
There are always huge games in a season, I feel this is one of those such games tonight.
Win and it will deflate what’s left of Sevco.
When we won there in 2007, it was a SC 4th round tie, and Derek Riordan scored twice ? in a 1-4 win, with D O’D & JVOH completing the scoring.
That game led to a quarter final visit to ICT, where Steven Pressley & Kenny Miller ? each scored in the last couple of minutes, in a 1-2 win
The Semi final saw JVOH score twice in a 2-1 win over St Johnstone, which meant we would go on to meet Dunfermline in a very forgetable final, won by a single strike by Doumbe, with only 6mins left on the clock.
I’m fairly certain that away tickets are available nearly every time,but it would be a hard way to find out I was wrong!
I remember that cup game against Livi,was one of the last times I went into The New Inn in Swindon. It had previously been run by an old couple,and served the best pint of lager in the town. They were also excellent hosts!
The new manager wasn’t so careful,nor so pleasant. One bad pint and one sarcastic comment too many and none of us ever went back. Losing a crowd of about twenty regulars is never wise in any business.
We only have nine games left after this. The huns know they need to start making up ground very soon. They will have tonight marked down as one of those occasions. Hence my comment about throwing them an anchor!
Bobby, gonna surprise the wee man when he comes home from school, if I’m back in time! Speaking of the wee guy …his team received an e-mail from the SFA.
“We are suspending the practice of players, coaches & officials shaking hands before & after each match”
The wee guy says ” This is rubbish, isn’t it dad”
Smart Bhoy! ?
Bobby, I rarely drink and visit pubs less, but from just observing the pubs around here, it looks a dying trade. I think the whole smoking ban had a big effect. When me & my mates were in our teens, we smoked dope in every pub in Brigton, and I don’t remember a single person objecting.
Now when I go to a concert, Parkhead, or whatever, I just take a few ready-rolled ?
MORNING ALL, bobby good article as always, atob commented the other day about her being fearful of this fixture, I agree with her ,that lyndon dykes sure harried our defenders that day, and tonight wont be any different, we need to play at our best I think to get the 3 points, as bad says id take a 0-1 right now.hh.
0-1 would be just fine. At this stage of the season,I’d take a long list of them!
Hope you both get lucky!
BP, I would be happy to take 1-0 in every game …for the rest of time! ?
BOBBY and BAD, yes as long as we keep winning I m not bothered about the score, COYBIG?
I keep being told Stevie G has done well at Sevco.
Domestically he has a worse record than Ally (Who are these people) McCoist, Mark (We will do plan A better) Warburton & Graeme (Always on call) Murty! Ffs, his record is only slightly better than Pedro (Wow, that’s a big bush) Caixinha.
May be reign for evermore ?
I see whoever is writing Slippy’s scripts, just plucks lines from Sevco songs for him to regurgitate. Apparently, he is to remain “Loyal and true” and wants Morelos to realise the Sevco fans “Follow near and far” ?
And never forget how brutally honest he is.. Refreshing, so it is!. People telling the truth, it’ll never catch on
I remember Jock Stein responding to some criticism after beating the bottom placed team in the league 1-0,,,,,,quote “if we win every game in the season 1-0, we win the league, that’ll do for me”
That’ll do for me as well HH
I have just read elsewhere this quote by Slippy from today’s Scotsman:
” before I kicked a ball as a professional with Liverpool, it was a dream to win with Liverpool. I sacrificed my life to do that and when I signed on the dotted line to represent Rangers as the leader of this team ,that’s what I committed to. You will see smiles, you will see emotion… you will see me going over the top…..You know what? Get used to it!”
I sacrificed my life…….? Really? Dedicated, maybe. But is it a sacrifice to become a millionaire footballer?
Good spot,mate. Maybe dedicated has too many syllables for him.
TWISTSNTURNS made a similar point on Monday after the win against St Johnstone. That a win is a win when it comes to the cup.
I’m of the same mind when it comes to the business end of the season. We’ve all lived through some astonishing downturns at this stage in the past-see my series from the summer on The Lost Ten-and while I love to see The Beautiful Game played The Glasgow Celtic Way,I love to see shiny silverwear and greetin’ huns even more!!!
John Collins was a pundit on Sportsound last night. I was thinking about him, being a great player with Celtic but unlucky for being with us in the terrible nineties. !990-1996. Played 273, scored 55. To show for it? one Scottish Cup Medal! (1995) 🙁
Fuck him. When we needed the money,he buggered off to Monaco for free.
Bobby, yes I didn’t like the way he ran down his contract, but I bet you didn’t say f..k him during his first 5 years! 🙂
John Collins was perhaps the first overtly mercenary ‘Celtic-minded’ player, he was certainly the first Celtic Bosman player. He was some player and had a great partnership with Peter Grant and true Legend McStay. I’ve never forgiven him, not for going but he strung everyone along insisting he didn’t know what his plans were. He knew alright!
To prevent the spread of the Coronavirus, only Scott Brown will be allowed to handle domestic trophies, for the foreseeable future.
Works for me!
McCaff, It didn’t surprise me that he would move on, as I said he was winning very little with us. But yes it was a shock to the system for us to lose one of our best players for zilch. As you say it was in the early days of the Bosman era, lessons were being learnt. He was never a dyed in the wool legend like McStay, he was a more typical mercenary. It wouldn’t happen much nowadays. Think of all the extensions to contracts PL gives to our best players, then sell them a year or so later for better transfer fees.
Although fall outs between Managers and players can see them did their heels in to the point that it can still happen! Bobo Balde?
Good article from The Guardian about European influences shaping English football.
Including the opening paragraph,where I think that they got the last line wrong.
“Alf Ramsey didn’t have much time for foreigners – and for him that meant anybody who wasn’t English. “Welcome to Scotland,” a local journalist once said to him as he landed at Prestwick. “You must be fucking joking,” he replied. In Moscow, given the chance to attend the Bolshoi Theatre he preferred to go to the British Embassy for a screening of an Alf Garnett film. He was not somebody who held any truck for continental sophistication. And yet his greatest lesson came from the Hungarians.”
“I believe Mr Ramsey’s greatest lesson in football came from a Belfast ragamuffin,who politely enquired as they lined up against each other..
Do you enjoy playing for England,Mr Ramsey?
I do indeed,Mr Tully.
Well,I hope you enjoy this one,because it will be your last!”
And duly ripped him a new one. My Dad’s favourite player for a reason,you know…
He was,as you rightly point out,a tremendous player for us at the time. And that made it all the more galling to lose him.
Btw,he came back to the UK to play for Everton,under Sir Walter of Cardigan. He then played for Fulham. Alongside a striker named Collins John.
Don’t know much about Alf Ramsey but it sounds like he was a Tory.
Terry Venables took a great delight at England squad gatherings by reminding him that they both came from Dagenham. Ramsey took an even greater delight in never picking him again.
i am definitely in the John Collins fan club. Fantastic player and stayed with us through the bad times. Deserved his Bosman signing on fee. Became fluent in French too.
Highlights for me would be the Cologne 3-0 game and the free kicks at Ibrox with his predators.
My mother’s highlight was his wee wink when he score the penno vs Brazil in 98.
26 years today,the announcement was made that The Rebels Have Won. That meant that the bad times were over. Two years later,it was pretty clear that we were on the brink. He could have made the difference in stopping their nine,but he chose otherwise.
You working from home today?
Coneybhoy, I remember that wee wink although I thought it was in the line up before the game started. I was working in Cheshire Oaks at the time. Me and a colleague, another Scot, were in the pub watching it and spoke to some of the locals. They politely cheered us on out of courtesy i think.
I would like to see Bayo play tonight. Leigh has looked a bit off the boil recently. I recognise he is still in the infancy of his comeback, but still, starting places should be handed out on merit and those on the bench should be given an opportunity to start a game and stake a claim. Broony similarly deserves to be benched. Two poor performances against Copenhagen (regardless of whether due to carrying a knock) should mean that he finds himself out of the first team for a game. McGregor, Christie and Rogic would be my midfield three.
Still, I expect Lenny will not change the line up at all, save for maybe Hayes coming in. Does anyone know of any fall out with Boli? Hayes and Taylor have been ropey in games as well, but only Boli has been banished. I do hope we rotate more in the remaining games this season, otherwise we may find ourselves running out of steam at the business end of the season, much in the way we did in December.
@ Big Audio Dynamite
Not sure where you are getting those numbers from. He has a better record than any other of the Sevco managers.
MacArthur Glen? We’ve got one of them in Swindon. I’m not a shopping fan,but it’s a fabulous place. When BREL closed down the locomotive site in the early 80s,it left Swindon with a huge site,and a bigger headache. So they decided to gut much of the building but leave it standing,and turn it into a shopping centre.
Locomotive museum included. They did a fantastic job,even my sister and my nephew were impressed when they visited last year. I mean,like where else in Swindon could I take them?
I considered Bayo in my line-up,saw him playing against Thistle in the League Cup and was quite impressed. Thing is,I don’t see him gelling with Eddy,so he’s struggling for game time.
Funny enough,I think he would be great with Klimala,one bursting wide and the other finishing. Time will tell.
Agree with you about Broonie,but this isn’t a game for leaving him out if he’s up for it.
MacArthur Glen – spot on Bobby. We were opening a new shop, a factory outlet, for Russell Athletic. Unfortunately R/A Europe went tits up a few years later. Most of the clothing manafucturers, mass market, did the same. Mass produced garments could be made for a fraction of the price in the near, middle and far East. Never mind, I got a half decent redundancy package.
The 3 amigos were worse in my opinion but my view is blinded by JCs perfect smile! I am at work, we are resisting the hype so far. Unfortunately there was no action in the Google apartments across the street the other day – other than a young fella washing down his veranda(you literally can look into the bedrooms)
You are right, i conflated the penno and the wink. Getting old. I wonder what other memories i have embellished. i definitely remember being a better football player as each year goes by
3-0 tonight with Calum/Ryan and Tom or Mo in CM. 2-1 with any other combo. Beat them with skill Celtic; don’t try to match the brawn (e.g. Calum/Scott and Ryan). Pass them into oblivion!!
Coneybhoy, I remember reading about you as a footballer in the Daily Record! (I too am getting old) 🙂
@ BOBBY MURDOCH’S CURLED-UP WINKLEPICKERS
Celtic By The Numbers did a great article on our striking options. Link here: http://celticbynumberscom.ipage.com/celtic-strikes-back/
Look at Bayo’s heat map. Out of all our strikers, he represents the closest thing to a poacher. He occupies the 6 yard box better than our other options- think of the Hearts game and his recent movement in the Clyde game. I think this would work very well with Eddy, as Eddy operates best by roaming, dropping deep to pick up the ball and running at a defence. Bayo with his positioning will keep the CBs occupied and fixed to the centre of the pitch.
Klimala looks like a strange signing to me. From his highlights on Youtube to his initial performances, I get the distinct feeling of a Kenny Miller, Pukki etc. He has pace and will thrive running behind backlines. Unfortunately, unless we are playing Sevco or in Europe, we are unlikely to face opposition willing to leave space to exploit. I hope I’m wrong, but being 4th choice at present does not fill me with confidence.
I think the Calum, Ryan & Tom was the combo we used about this time last year when Broonie was out injured for a wee while. it worked a treat.
Fergus,a happy tale brilliantly told in three parts on e-Tims.
Mike in Toronto
That is no surprise. That has been the m.o. throughout …. decide what you want the outcome to be, and then frame the issues so as to arrive at the outcome they want. They are now just trying to bring this to a neat and tidy end.
And they (including Celtic) would have swept this under the rug years ago. And they would have done just that, if it wasn’t for you pesky kids.
The pesky kids immediately drew Celtic’s attention to the curtailment of the period under charge in May 2018.
They further gave Celtic a week later HMRC documentation voluntarily provided by someone who had lawful access to it.
Celtic did nothing so the pesky kids got their lawyer to send the documentation to the SFA the evening of the JPDT in June 2018.
Three weeks later the SFA came out with the CAS clause which The Sun article refers to.
Celtic had the meaning of the documentation rehearsed to them in Aug 2018 and did SFA, nor answered questions put at 2018 AGM re CAS referral.
In Jan 2019 they refused to use the documentation resulting in the new Res12 2019 where they refused to take case from SFA to UEFA, even though as The Sun article says the SFA had surrendered jurisdiction under the 5 Way Agreement.
Celtic were provided with a professional accountants report confirming deception at play in the grant period, which is SFA territory, by a group of shareholders in Jan 2020 which Celtic passed to SFA.
The decision Celtic and Scottish football face is to double down and block any decision on legal advice relating to the 5 Way Agreement or come clean.
The decision football supporters will face is do we continue to support if they double down?
Had Res12 been passed in 2013 the corruption it has revealed since then would not have been known and supporters would not be faced with a decision each will have to make if the SFA double down.
This is a game where possession football should take a back seat to putting the ball into the danger zone early.
It’s tight pitch and control is difficult especially against a referee approved physical team.
I would have Bayo on with Christie and Ed pressing high for knockdowns.
We also need the defenders and defensive mids to stay closer and compact the space.
Our defenders have a habit of dropping back to quickly and this makes their high punts and pressure more difficult to deal with.
Defenders have to push a little higher and FF should be prepared to sweep.
McCoist 72% win rate
Now you can counter with any argument you like that backs up your constant praise of Gerrard’s abilities, but I’ll stick to his ACTUAL record. As Sevco manager, he only wins 6 out of every 10 games 🙂
Oh, and no, I don’t know of any rift between our manager and ANY of his squad…Mmmm!!
” But the talk now is that Pope should be Gareth Southgate’s first choice for England at Euro 2020 too. ”