Celtic losing this weeks off field battle.

I recall heading into a few derby weeks with injury worries, but this is taking the biscuit.
Not only do we have to worry about a bog standard injury hurting any of our numerous players away with their international teams, but with many camps seeing Covid rip through them we are basically left wondering who next?


Our thoughts go out to those infected, and once again we are making a huge assumption that they as professional athletes will be able to perform to the same level post virus.
However there is no doubt now that this round of international games was a bridge too far. We are seeing sports teams undertake journeys Joe Plumber isn’t allowed to take, and we will now live with the inevitable results.


At the time of writing we are down four players but right here, right now it would feel incredibly fortunate to see only that amount ruled out.
Shane in particular must be a huge worry with his Ireland camp riddled, after visiting three different countries who woulda thunk it.


The club themselves are correct in their assertion releasing players in the current climate needs looked at, but I do have some sympathy with them here in that they have merely complied with the rules but will feel heavily punished.
Hopefully their little plea doesn’t fall on deaf ears.


The players should always be allowed to represent their nation if called, that must be sacrosanct. There is a case to made that Nir should not have travelled after injury, but that’s an inhouse matter.
They are the pawns here and its for the governing bodies and clubs to sort out. But if they prove incapable of common sense decisions that offer a firm degree of protection to those they represent, them the players themselves must make their own decision with regards to their safety.
Now we know the team bubble worked, but the international one doesn’t, any player with a high risk family member must be contemplating withdrawal on safety grounds.
If there are more international games, we should all expect a lot of player shuffling.


The SFA though, talk about bad timing. On the day it breaks they have borrowed 5million from future UEFA revenue, those very games sew chaos and no doubt we will hear some weighty calls to cancel cross border tournaments until a vaccine is freely available.
On the loan itself one wonders just where exactly it will end up, should it help to prop up the lower league clubs or grassroots then fair enough.
But should it simply become more wages for the already too numerous suits that have some title or other over there, that would be an absolute disgrace worthy of an official enquiry.
I don’t recall them automatically accepting wage cuts at the start of this pandemic, despite being very generously staffed with many perks.
Borrowing that sum is a sign things are bad. Remember, they go under we go under, and they ain’t the brightest or most honest.
A huge alarm bell started ringing with the loan news.


And they aren’t very smart as they continue to be easily out maneuvered by the Ibrox folks, plus now they are allowing precedent to be set in regards to the derby.
Should the match go ahead whilst we are without the services of some important first team players then we shall expect the very same should our title rival suffer the same fate when building up to a future derby.
This precedent, once set, must be adhered to without excuses.


Ourselves,,, well there’s plenty times we’ve done ourselves proud in the face of adversity. As my partner in crime succinctly pointed out yesterday the team talk is already written.
Those drafted in won’t be judged on this performance alone, but how many times has a man been drafted in for a big tie only to shine bright, eclipsing the rest ala Marshall in the Nou Camp?
Those coming into the team will realise this a huge chance to stake a proper claim, something many a player will relish.


Our squad is the best in the land, and can cope without four players no problem, three positions in reality when you consider Nir and El Hamed compete for the same spot these days.
If we can keep our keeper and mainstays of defence together ( Kris, Julienne, Shane) that would be a great start.
Midfield has a plethora of options, and Odsonne wasn’t looking too hot anyway, so perhaps the changes we are forced to make aren’t the killer blows some would have you believe just landed.


If anything the pressure has increased on our rivals with these circumstances. Many Tims would say we have nothing to lose now, and a defeat would be placed at Covids feet, unless an absolute collapse of course. If you’re going to lose a derby the first would be best as theres plenty time to regain those points, and if its lost whilst nowhere near full strength then the victor cannot rest on their laurels too much, or claim clear supremacy.
A defeat this weekend would be far from definitive, only a fool would argue that.
However should a weakened rival you believe there for the taking emerge victorious, that victory would resonate much louder bringing most unwanted early season pressure and questions to a dug out that were tipped to lift silverware soon.


We have it all to win here, they have it all to lose. I know which position I would rather be in.
A crisis? Nah. Shuffling the pack merely.
Our starting eleven was unclear anyway plus our new left winger is a mystery to the rival bench.
Patrick Klimala might even start up front and that lad looks seriously hungry,really out to impress, and sits on the shoulder offering something different.
Their defenders might have preferred Eddy, better the devil you know and all that.
Derby week has got off to a hell of a start.
Let’s see what today brings us.


By Mahe.

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October 13, 2020 7:38 am

Good morning all.

October 13, 2020 7:58 am

It will take 11 brave men and 5 brave subs to win on Saturday. It will need two goals as Travernier will get another penalty ,and we will probably have to do it at some point with only 10 on the park
Go get them Celtic this is your year to start putting nails in their second coffin

big packy
October 13, 2020 7:58 am

MAHE, great article, we will have to go with whoever we have got left im afraid, the huns will be confident now, but lets surprise them, in lenny we trust, COYBIG.H,H,

October 13, 2020 8:33 am


Morning,oul’ son. How’s trix?

October 13, 2020 8:55 am

Good morning all. Unleash Diego Laxalt on them. Put them on the back foot and terrorise Tavernier on our left wing. Ajeti, Klimala and Griffiths have the fire power to destroy them. Confident of a good win for us on Saturday.

October 13, 2020 8:55 am

Republic of Ireland reporting second positive test. On unnamed player who is now isolating

October 13, 2020 8:58 am

All good bud,watching young Daniel as I post he is climbing all over me.😀😀

Bada Bing
October 13, 2020 9:02 am

Republic of Ireland reporting second positive test. On unnamed player who is now isolating

October 13, 2020 9:12 am


Well composed article on the travails going into this very important match. I take your point that losing the first of four is the better option,but let’s remember that the season is far from guaranteed to be completed. As such,we need to fashion the bare minimum of a draw from this fiasco,while ensuring that we don’t go out to simply play for one!

As THETIC mentions in his post,I expect Beaton to be trying even harder than usual to ensure a victory for his favourites on Saturday. By that,I expect Broonie and Shane to be booked early on,with at least one of them seeing red ASAP afterwards. With,as ever,our lads getting seven shades of shit kicked out of them,while we have little or no cover on the bench.

If I were Rangers manager,I’d be telling my players to target Celtic’s central defenders with fists elbows and feet. And to leave the boot in with every tackle elsewhere too. We are definitely missing four players-Christie,Bitton,Elhamed and Forrest-and probably another two in Eddie and The Yeti,all of whom would definitely be on the bench at worst. We are at a serious disadvantage from the off,and losing a couple more to injury during the game will only make the situation worse. As BIGPACKY says,we can only go with who we have left,but…

Who DO we have left,especially if we lose all six? You rightly point out that our two Israelis usually compete for the one place in the team,but a more important value that they have is their versatility,which comes in especially handy in case of enforced substitutions. Forrest can play pretty much anywhere across the front line,meaning we can mix it up during the game when he is there. Eddie scares the shit out of them,while the other two are important misses for us too. But it’s not so much who we replace them with in the starting eleven as who we bring in for the bench-because we don’t have a lot of experienced and trusted cover for this.

Overall,this looks like we will see Rangers starting with,on paper,a stronger eleven than ours-and I struggle to think of the last time I saw that. But fortunately matches aren’t won on paper. And if we can take the three points off them in the face of adversity such as this,it will deal a serious blow to them.

So,if ever there was a time for the Celtic players to stand up and be counted,this is it. Problem is that the way things are going,we won’t need to take our shoes and socks off to count them in the first place!

October 13, 2020 9:13 am


Climbing all over you? He’s not scared of heights then…

October 13, 2020 9:22 am


Aw hell,please let it NOT be big Shane. The way it’s going,you and VOGUEPUNTER are going to be our defensive giants.

Bada Bing
October 13, 2020 9:24 am

Bmcuw- remember Mike Conroy…….

October 13, 2020 9:27 am


I’ll bet Alex Miller remembers him,an elbow in particular!

I saw him make his debut for us,we got gubbed 4-1 from Hibs. He was our best player by a mile. I was not too happy when we let him go,for peanuts too,because he could play anywhere

October 13, 2020 9:34 am

Morning all…
Celtic in adversity over the years have proven to be a formidable foe! Usually with the backing of the Faithful, though, so it’s up to Lenny and Broony to deliver that Celtic should fear no-one and those two have shown us over the years that they will go through a brick wa’ for the Hoops! Bring it on I say, no matter what team we are forced to go with.

On a slightly different track…the open letter from CSA shows why CFC are getting away with Res 12. The Supporters’ Association has shown again they are toothless – but worse when they have got something viable to say it’s done in the most cack-handed unprofessional manner! Surely they must have someone able to structure a letter so that people actually look at the content rather than the messenger. Another embarassment from CSA I’m sad to say.

Big Jim Packy…I hope all’s well at the OK Corrall!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Have a good day all!

October 13, 2020 9:48 am

I see Trump held a rally last night in the key swing state of Florida. Packed,it was,and most of them without masks. I wonder how many of them will be fit to vote in three weeks time?

Noel Skytrot
October 13, 2020 10:01 am

Morning all. This weekend’s match has all the hallmarks of a Celtic “special.” A weakened team, an alleged superior opposition, the typical shite from the ahem..sports journalists, dodgy officials etc I think we’ll do this mob. Lennon will be driving the oul ‘written off’ message home to the players and we will come out on top. Let’s get right into William from the off.

Awe Naw
October 13, 2020 10:38 am

Duffy has Corona

Bada Bing
October 13, 2020 10:49 am

Awe Naw- source mate?

Awe Naw
October 13, 2020 11:00 am


Positive test anyway. Hopefully another false positive. Still waiting. My source cannot be revealed

Bada Bing
October 13, 2020 11:03 am

Awe Naw- thanks, hope things better at your end.

Awe Naw
October 13, 2020 11:13 am


My mum got home yesterday. She’s feeling much better. Doctors suspect she had a mild stroke. Not surprising really. Her husband will be in hospital for a long time.

Thanks for asking

October 13, 2020 11:24 am

Seen on CQN

“Duffy has just posted photo on board a plane to Finland, he hasn’t tested positive anyway. Pity he wasn’t flying to Glasgow”!

October 13, 2020 11:41 am

Morning All,


The Gombeen Man
October 13, 2020 11:42 am

Good positive read Mahe.
According to RTÉ the false positives from the Irish Squad have came from the UEFA laboratory.

The official who tested positive in Slovakia last week was tested twice in different labs when he came home : Negative results.

The player yesterday had a positive result from UEFA and a subsequent test in Ireland proved negative.

They were awaiting the result of a third independent test before asking the Health Service Executive (NHS) whether the player could travel to Finland.

I don’t know if this need report will work outside Ireland?

RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) Tweeted:
It’s been an extraordinary couple of days in the Republic of Ireland camp – @Corktod has the very latest news #RTEsoccer https://t.co/vc6O4liY84 https://twitter.com/RTEsport/status/1315754658539896833?s=20

October 13, 2020 12:39 pm

Rumours Ajer & Elyounoussi also testing positive.

Hopefully just a rumour.


Big Audio Dynamite
October 13, 2020 12:41 pm

Put your life at risk just to play international football matches? Does that make sense to anyone? It wouldn’t be me, and for the life of me I can’t understand why anyone would be willing to put themselves & their families at risk to play games you don’t have to!


The Gombeen Man
October 13, 2020 1:23 pm

We won’t know who will be available for Saturday until 12.30 on Saturday.

The lunchtime news here said a senior player had three tests. Initially positive, then negative and finally positive. He’s not travelling to Finland.

In other news…

The Irish Under 21s play Italy in Pisa at 4pm today.
There’s been an outbreak of Covid in the Italian squad with 7 confirmed cases.
They’ve stood down the entire Italian U 21 squad and the Irish will play the Under 20s.

What could go wrong?

Lee O’Connor is in the squad…he’s at Tranmere now (I think).

If there’s anyone with time on their hands there’s supposed to be a link to the game here…


October 13, 2020 1:43 pm

I also remember the Mike Conroy final. Played a stormer and inspired the team. He and big Roddie held out against BFDJ and Parlane? They bombarded us with “speculative high balls” and Mike stuck his head in amongst the fists and elbows.
Same spirit requires Saturday.

Mike in Toronto
October 13, 2020 1:43 pm

Awe Naw

Heard about your family troubles, and wanted to pass along my well wishes

October 13, 2020 1:58 pm


Players being ‘allowed’ to play for their countries and it being ‘sacrosanct’ in the modern game is absolute B/S imo. The only reason FIFA & UEFA force, by threat of punitive action, clubs to release players is for the money they make- not the betterment of the game or the players. How much money do FIFA make from the world cup? Look at the bribes and back handers in world football – FFP – “yer ‘avin a laugh”. It’s nothing to do with prestige or national pride, except perhaps for some of the competing players that is. The whole international call up thing is a farce. Players should be reminded that it is the clubs that pay their salaries and fund their lavish lifestyles, for the top earners anyway, and not the SFA or any other countries football association. IMO Celtic would have a decent chance of winning this in the courts if they were to refuse to release players for international duty during a pandemic – in fact i would guess that FIFA / UEFA could be accused of reckless endangerment. But again therein lays the problem – you can’t take the SFA, UEFA or FIFA to court as it would breach their rules of association. Perhaps if enough of the bigger clubs got together it could, and should, be challenged.

As for the players well they would need to ‘suck it up’. In the real world imagine working for a company and being a crucial part of it’s structure and operations but you then constantly demand to be released for a couple of weeks, on full pay, to go and ply your profession for a regional engineers group that are taking part in an ‘engineering competition’ on the other side of the world – oh and by the way you might get injured or become sick while participating in this event and be unavailable to work for your employer for weeks thereby potentially costing them lost contracts and lost revenue! Would it happen?

In closing does anyone really give a flying fig about international football these days?

And may the gods watch over all those affected by Covid 19

Awe Naw
October 13, 2020 2:12 pm


Thanks Buddy xx

Awe Naw
October 13, 2020 2:18 pm

The huns will have prepared for a 352 Celtic formation. Due to Covid and freshness we should go 442
Frimpong, Jullien, Ajer, Diego
McGregor Turnbull Brown Elyounoussi
Griffiths, Ajeti

Subs, Bain, Soros, Patryk, Taylor, O Connell

And we will pump them.. 2 clear goals

Cosy Corner Bhoy
October 13, 2020 2:51 pm

Not exactly confidence building news on a daily basis. It’s a ‘ who’s going to be left to choose from scenario’.
When Jack came out for his THREE minutes worth that was the first time I knew the Govan Works X1 actually had a player away besides More or Less, and I’m not sure even he is away!
You can be confident that none of them will be out through Covid as they’ll probably not find out till Saturday about 4 o’clock!!
Anyway, instead of advantage us (Home and better squad ) it’s advantage them even before Beaton helps them out, I feel.
I’m with Garry… we must play our new man Diego. Unknown quantity, definite quality… can only benefit us even if he tires later.
I remember when we ONLY bought players who could go STRAIGHT in! ‘ Those were the days, my friend….).

October 13, 2020 3:27 pm

Hi All,

I have not be on much lately mainly because I have nothing that merits saying. So, I am going to give the blog a rest for a while. I shall leave with two thoughts. Firstly, every time I see Kevin Nisbet of Hibs, I am impressed. Rough round the edges, Yes, but developing. Certainly worth watching over the season. Looks very useful in, at least, the domestic game.

Secondly, I fear the worst versus Sevco. Before the call offs the team was not settled. Is it reasonable to expect a cobbled together team to perform better? Somehow the magic formula will be found? I doubt it. I hope I am wrong but how can we perform when all three sections of the team are damaged by injury and call off? If my heart could do the thinking and my head could only feel……..to quote the disappointing folk singer.

Hasta la vista!


big packy
October 13, 2020 3:36 pm

AFTERNOON ALL and JIM, AWE NAW ,best wishes to you and yours,👍 MCAFF @ 9-34, the calm before the storm😍

Cosy Corner Bhoy
October 13, 2020 3:39 pm

G64 and VP: Saw your post about swally on trains and watching game on phones. Why don’t you get a FREE bus to the nearest town outwith the no pubs area and watch it there? ie Dumfriesshire or Moffat maybe😁😁

October 13, 2020 3:47 pm

Cosy Corner Bhoy
G64 and VP: Saw your post about swally on trains and watching game on phones. Why don’t you get a FREE bus to the nearest town outwith the no pubs area and watch it there? ie Dumfriesshire or Moffat maybe😁😁
P, I have my pass ,Big Gordon is a good bit younger than me (must be months in it) I would not like him to fall out with you due to this quite understandable error. :O) hh take care.

A thing of beauty
October 13, 2020 3:48 pm

I think it’s essential travel only outwith your area.

October 13, 2020 3:49 pm


Surely you qualify for a Companion Bus Ticket 😁


big packy
October 13, 2020 3:52 pm

COSY CORNER BHOY, dont send them to moffat, went there once and it was closed😍

October 13, 2020 3:55 pm


‘COMPANION’ ,You’re dead ya wee bass :O/

October 13, 2020 3:58 pm


October 13, 2020 4:04 pm




October 13, 2020 4:15 pm

There’s a story on the BBC site of a protester against a Republican March in Glasgow, getting the jail for throwing a firework that injured a policeman on duty.

It says the guy was “traced after his distinctive orange top and blue shorts were identified from footage of the incident.”

I can’t believe he was the only one wearing that colour combo at the protest 🙂

October 13, 2020 5:33 pm

Howdy yall
Any news?

big packy
October 13, 2020 5:37 pm

cant believe eddie van halen who sadly died recently was only 2 years younger than me and 18 months younger than my best mate jim, i always associated him with the eighties in musical genre, do you like that word genre, just stole it from wee joans notepad😍another true story😍 bur i digress you would think eddie would have been into deep purple led zeppelin pink floyd,etc but we all have different musical tastes, jim for instance winces at me liking the heavy rock genre he is into the brass band genre, ive no objections to that, my dad played trombone in the croy silver band many many moons ago, maybe thats why i hated brass instruments growing up, it was only when i played with a 16 piece orchestra when i was 24 years old, you realise what great musicians the brass band guys are, mind you when you get a clarinet player in your left ear and an alto sax player in your right ear it can be very infuriating 😍.think thats why im partly deaf now,,,another true story 👍BTW, JIM is not feeling too well at the moment, thats why he has not been on the blog, just in case anyone was wondering, I e-mailed him earlier today, told him to get well soon,JIM if your lurking luv ya to bits bruv. another true story.👍

October 13, 2020 5:48 pm

Ronaldo has Covid. Look what Uefa have done. The players won’t be responding to the next International call is my prediction.

October 13, 2020 6:15 pm

I loved Van Halen. They were a 70s band. Do you know who discovered them in a pub, and gave them their break?

big packy
October 13, 2020 6:21 pm

GARRY, jimthetim53 👍

October 13, 2020 6:30 pm

No idea. Tell me