Been a hectic week for me,even if it all looks a little laid back at Celtic Park. Yes,we are back in training.and even off on a trip to Austria for the first of some pre-season friendlies. But at the moment,the promised continuation of last season’s magnificent rebuild has yet to materialise.
We have lost the peerless talents of Tom Rogic since last season,as well as Nir Bitton. Granted,I found it difficult to take to the big Israeli,who in nearly a decade at the club failed to tie down a regular starting place-or position,even!-but his loss deprives us of a capable utility stand-in.
Granted too that we have signed up CCV,but then,he was with us last season. So too was Jota,and even if the vibes are still positive,I want to see his signature on that contract! (Ask MIKEINTORONTO what the alternative offer is.) So as it stands,we actually have a weaker squad now than even two months ago.
It seems we have definitely signed Alexandro Bernabei,a 21yo Argentinian left back. Certainly according to the clubs anyway. He was even introduced to the public in the time-honoured jersey and scarf. But is there likely to be a further hold-up here to do with work permit problems? We have seen them before,after all. The fall-out as a result of Brexit has upended the whole work permit system,and that applies to non-EU nationals too.
Apart from that-having never seen him play-my main concern remains his height. At 5’7” he is smaller than Greg Taylor,who we all agree is hampered defensively by his own lack of stature. But then,it seems he possesses a decent head butt,and I can think of a few deserving targets for him to practice on. As ever when I lack enthusiasm over a signing,I hope he rams my words down my throat!
There are constant rumours,as there always are at this time of the year. And we should remember that the window is still open for over eight weeks. But AP has always said that he prefers his new signings to be available for the off,ready for pre-season and adapting to new surroundings and new colleagues.
The board should listen,rather than be booking their summer holidays.
There are another couple of rumoured departures,which brings me back to my opening paragraph. First night of the week was a Jolly Boys Outing to Margate-and a few other parts of northern Kent-via an initial drop at Heathrow. The rest of the week has seen me skirting the Suffolk/Norfolk border after an improving visit to Cambridge. Each night sees me in bliddy Lowestoft,as well as driving a few yards away from Carrow Road. And this,it seems,is where one of the brightest hopes in years from our academy seems destined to sign up.
Everything that we heard from those inside Celtic,whether that be the senior players or the various coaches,had us all believing that we had the next big thing on our books. Yet he has barely figured for us since his debut over five years ago. There is no doubt that EVERYONE at the club wanted this lad to succeed,and that especially included the fans. We love our heroes at Celtic,and especially our home-grown ones. But it seems that to achieve his ambitions,he will have to start again elsewhere.
The thing is,I reckon,that none of us wanted Michael Johnston to succeed as much as he himself did. He was living the dream-the dream we’ve ALL had-and the world was his lobster,it seemed. The lad didn’t make the breakthrough he wanted,maybe,because he wanted it so much. It meant everything to him! You could see it every time he played in the last two seasons especially,a look that said-this time,surely,ffs!
Yes,the injuries also held him back,but maybe it was the weight of expectations that held him back. Ours and his own. I hope now,new club,new country,that he can dispense with that dead weight and get back to enjoying his football. I think it’s been a while since that happened for him. Make us wonder what we missed out on,young fella. You deserve that,and I wish you all the best.
Karamoko Dembele has a new club,Brest in Ligue 1. How a talent like his failed to make it at Celtic really is beyond me. Perhaps we need to look at our development process. Same goes for Luca Connell,so highly rated by his international side. Needless to say,we hope they flourish elsewhere.
The other impending departure from the fringes of the squad is Jullien. Though even at 29yo and in danger of seeing his career fizzle out,he still has too high an opinion of himself for Schalke’s liking. After a promising start,etc,you know the rest. Just like you know the rest when I mentioned Heathrow earlier in the article.
And back once again to the main point of the article? Don’t piss off Ange. Lovely humourous Australian fellas,from my own experience,don’t take kindly to being pissed off. Just saying,like…
Above article by BMCUWP
Hola Bobby, Buenos Dias to you. Food for thought, MJ has, sadly, failed to fulfil his potential with Celtic. He is not the first, and undoubtedly won’t be the last. If a move to Norwich is confirmed, I wish him well.
Que? You speak Spanish anaw?
Yes,it really is a shame that MJ’s time with us has not lived up to his or our expectations. Same with KD and LC,all highly rated,yet here we are.
I genuinely think we need to look further into this,as it is happening too often. The gap between teenage superstar and first team regular is a yawning chasm,and that should never be the case.
Jota is here. Official! 5 year deal.
Great news Jobo.
McCaff has repeatedly posted about youth development, in Scotland, it needs challenged and changed ASAP.
Playing our teenage superstars in the Lowland League, is a huge part of the problem, the issue is they have nowhere else to play.
I honestly don’t think a lot of fans ( of all clubs ) appreciate, how every step up, is massive.
Our players, should be nowhere near the Lowland League, I don’t say that to diss, those players because these players have all done well to reach that level, but how many will play in the Premier League, for any club, never mind Celtic.
Great news, Portuguese transfer window opened this morning and Jota signed immediately, that’s what I like to see.
Great article Bobby. Very diplomatic as far as Bitton is concerned.
I agree that squad is weaker than last season, with the departure of Rogic, which I still don’t get.
As far as MJ is concerned, he has not changed, improved or learned anything about the game in the last 5 years. Good luck to him wherever he ends up.
Great news about Jota
JOBO et al
Terrific news about Jota!
Proves that The Godfather is still the most influential etc film ever. And I didn’t even have to “get Luca Brasi in.”
The threat of MIKEINTORONTO was obviously the deal-maker here!
A great read and good point about strengthening of squad. Looks like we have finally got cover at LB but as you say 5′ 7″ …hope we aren’t all getting antsy when teams start launching missiles into our wide areas.
Wee Dembele offski – tbh he had a few chances to show us what everyone was raving about…
CFC made a great point yesterday about the need for a more outward looking model when we come to buying players. It is far too easy to look fondly on the good old days and hanker after comforting memories.
Reality is reality after all.
Reflecting more on this issue- I suppose what sets me off about us signing Argentinian LB is not any specific issue with our new signing as I’m sure he will be a star – if Ange has endorsed him, that’s good enough for me – the issue is wider than that.
Apart from the obvious risks of having too many players from other continents spending too much time in the air heading to and fro their native National team obligations and R&R etc… missing key domestic ties etc.
We face the realistic prospect of having to hold onto existing sub-par players to fulfill our obligations to meet 4 club and 4 national developed players to reach a 25 man EL squad. ( apologies if this is incorrect I’m relying on another source)
We see some blogs saying we retain Bain (and others) simply to meet that rule … but clearly Ange has no intention of playing them.
That is a concern – and a reality.
We all understand the benefits of being able to bring in naturally gifted players to bolster our squad – there have been so many who have come in and made a huge difference.
Surely tho’ we only bring in players when we cannot grow our own?
Right here and now we now appear to be in a place where we are ‘having to’ retain certain Scottish players simply to fulfil the 4&4 rule.
If Ange cannot look at his Development squad and see the next FB CH DcM or CF then we need to rip that Development model up and start again.
Mahe’s long list (yesterday) of our players developed overseas, does have a fresh and outward looking appeal to it.
But ….( sorry Miss Morrow) The notion that we are clinging onto sub-par players to meet 4 & 4 rule is absolute bonkers.
Maybe we won’t ever field 11 home grown players again – but surely to eff we can develop 8-10 contenders in a squad of 25???
Get it sorted Celtic!
I learned at an early age not to disparage Celtic players where at all possible. Every one of them has achieved what we all dreamed of doing. But one player really divided the support. The player in question was Tommy Callaghan,and his style of play most certainly was not to everyone’s liking!
The important thing though is that it WAS to Jock’s liking. Who are we to argue?
Also,when ATHINGOFBEAUTY was mulling over returning home,she came up for some house viewings,etc. We went to Rugby Park in the John Barnes season. Took me all of two minutes to give one of our players a proper sheracking. No prizes for guessing it was Tebily,totally lackadaisical when under no pressure at all.
Well,ATOB matched that in her reaction to me! “You don’t EVER treat our players like that!!!!!!”
Etc,and I was well chastened.
Took her about another ten minutes before she lost the rag with him too! I was PMSL for ages,but I think that’s likely to be the last time she’s done more than muttered under her breath at a game. Probably along the lines of-“Could be worse,it could be Tebily…”
Frodsham Bhoy – hope you reconsider buddy, the blog will be a poorer place without your active contributions. TBH I thought your update on new signing was just that, an update and nodded thankful we have a problem slot covered.
The wee group of us that met up yesterday was simply that , a wee group of 5, including a guy who lurks here and I’ve known for years, plus my wife and two guys I first met F2F in May this year. Apart from being Celts and into a bit of history ( general & Celtic) we are all retired and available to meet up in afternoons. It’s a tiny portion of the wider Sentinels and hardly representative of the wider blog group.
On a personal level I consider, anyone on here ( or in general) actively ignoring and excluding folks, to be very un-Celtic at best, and downright insidious bullies at worst. Glad you were able to call out what you feel and I’m sure you will see a more inclusive side to the blog hereafter.
Really hope you reconsider and give us a shout if you can get out for a wee afternoon sesh. That offer extends to anyone else feeling excluded or ignored. Or just up for a hauf gallon…
PS big hoots can be advertised in advance as the larger numbers involved probably precludes risk of nasties turning up looking for bother. In the smaller group we prefer to keep the location between ourselves for obvious reasons. Just ask for contact details and that is sorted.
Magua & BRRB
Great to see you both yesterday – good Celtic Bhoys and both John McH & SeSette enjoyed an enjoyable wee day oot.
Look forward to seeing you and others soon!
Morning all. HH
Player development is rapidly becoming a major issue. MON was known for preferring seasoned professionals,but off the top of my head,he still managed to introduce-and play regularly-players like Marshall,Moloney,Kennedy,McManus and McGeady. He was intending to have Colin Healy as the successor to Lambert,but the player grew impatient,and decided to up sticks-a bad injury made that a bad move. Also Stephen Crainey and the astonishingly good Liam Miller,whose head was turned before he was ready for such a move as he took.
That’s eight in five years,from a manager not known for playing kids! I doubt we have had eight worthy of the job description since.
If that’s you up and about in time for brunch-as usual!-it must be time for my bed!
Magic wee chat last night. Give yer daughter a wee hug from me for keeping you on your toes.
I can understand FRODSHAMBHOY’s dismay,tbh. I missed his requests about forwarding mail obviously,and I apologise for that. If anyone else is in that position,please mail me directly on
As for the wee get-the-githers,yes,they should be on a need to know basis-even though the invitation is clearly open to all. And this is where it gets difficult,I suppose,as the best way to find out the details is by mail-see above! The original hoots date back now to about ten years ago,and I was always very careful with the details for the reason you mention.
They did get a bit unmanageable though,as it was difficult to introduce new attendees to others-which was the whole point of the things,just so that people could put faces to names.
One of the best things about meeting so many people in the flesh over the years,many of whom are bloody good friends to this day,was a genuine and total surprise to me. A certain poster-amongst many,of course-was always somewhat disapproving of my comments,and frequently told me so. Politely,but in no uncertain terms. So I wasn’t really looking forward to meeting him-at all!
Well,I think it’s fair to say that we got on like a house on fire. As did my sisters and my Dad when we met him and his lovely partner at a couple of functions,etc. That really was the joy of the hoots,people who were at loggerheads on CQN realising that their respective nemeses-?-were actually really great company.
Maybe there’s so much lost in an individual’s interpretation of the written word,while the spoken word is so much clearer. I dunno,I just know that nobody gives me a hard time about a space after a comma when I’m talking to them!
R I P Jim,still much missed.
How’s not-so-wee Sean these days?
Good morning you shower of rascals. Great day yesterday bhoys and ghirl. Publicans eyes seem to light up when old Johnny rolls into their taverns. Instead of booking half board they go all inclusive.
Wee Kilwinning money-saving tip for you. Get a camp bed behind the bar.
I’m on the Eurostar to Disneyland Paris, with Mrs Kitts, our daughter and her husband, and our wee granddaughter. I’ll say hello to Mickey Mouse for you.😎😎
Mick, I have several. All tastefully covered in hoops and tricolour.
I betcha he has a BIGPACKY watch!
Enjoy the break,and use that big frame of yours to muscle into the queues. You know it makes sense…
Sol Kitts, you are saying hello to a hun?🤔
A piece at anyone’s door,I like the way you are thinking…
More details of which Bada touched on, last night.
The men’s Champions League is to be broadcast on BBC TV for the first time.
Highlights will be on shown on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer and BBC Sport website and app from the 2024-25 season.
TV highlights and clips for online and social media will be available from 22:00 GMT on the Wednesday of play.
The deal includes the final, with details to be confirmed of those highlights.
It complements the BBC’s existing BBC Radio 5 live commentary rights for the competition. From the 2024-25 season, viewers will be able to watch highlights of the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup on the BBC.
The three-year deal was secured as part of Uefa’s latest rights auction. The Wednesday highlights include action from all the Champions League games that week, bringing viewers all the goals and unmissable moments.
Elsewhere, Amazon Prime will show live matches for the first time and will get the first pick for Tuesday night games.
BT Sport will retain all the other live games and highlights in the competition’s new format.
Good shout about difference a F2F can make … aye & and get that email to Frodsham … even if ye have to drive up there 🌞
I’m going to use the youth queues. It worked last time we did it….🤣
Great T shirt btw
… and the meek shall inherit the earth ..
Quick question for you all,answer at 11am or bedtime as I call it.
In MON’s first season,who scored the most goals,according to wikipedia?
Chris Sutton,or Lubo Moravcik?
Another interesting-to me at least-stat is that Johann Mjallby played 48 times that season,third highest number amongst the squad. Yet my personal recollection is that the big fella took a while to impress the new boss? Same with Jackie,who was actually fifth on the list. Crikey,my memories from twenty years before that are more accurate!
I sent it last night,ASAP as promised in my comment at the time. With apologies-which appeared in small print!
Sean Patrick starts high school in August, I sent him jobos Jota signing link.
That will get him out his pitCSC🤣🤣🤣
Bloody hell,where did those years go?
I’m route training a colleague this week,and it was his turn to drive. Driver is in control of the radio and the heating,them’s the rules. Anyway,a certain song came on,and it took me back to where I was when it was first released-as music does.
Forty years ago,ffs…
Bloody hell,where did those years go?
Aye,not trying that again. OAP queue the next time.
The circle at Celtic fc has remained incomplete since the Jock Stein era.
It was a rare interlude in our history.
For our youngsters the pathway has too many pitfalls.
Their failure is often met with the response if he was good enough he would have made it.
Simply not true as luck, circumstances and the whims and likes of coaches all play a huge part.
Guidance and proper preparation have all played a huge part in who does or doesn’t make it.
New management selected by unqualified people can also see abrupt tactical change and the demise of promising careers.
It can also breathe life into a declining player.
Inconsistency in instruction is difficult to deal with for even the most experienced players so imagine how a developing star feels.
Strangely this coming season after last seasons success may prove more difficult for coaches.
Fear is a natural part of the landscape and often stifles youngsters development as coaches tend to remain in a comfort zone with the tried and trusted.
The defensive need of someone to supplement CCV and Starfelt should not necessarily be addressed by a signing when we have Welsh,Murray and Lawall who could be looked at preseason and given time to show their ability.
Likewise the signing of Siegrest may affect the chances given to Oluwayemi who by all accounts is a very promising talent.
Robertson has had good reports elsewhere and along with Guchi should be given game time to see what he brings.
Upfront it would make more sense to give Moffat,Kenny and Dawson playing time rather than sign another.
If none of the youngsters cut it then having financial stability allows us the ability to fill the void with seasoned professionals properly scouted for the role we intended.
How you doing my old friend. How’s yer wee grandson, bet he’s not so wee now. Used to love our chats on the Celtic Way on match day. Just seen he’s starting high school. Cheez oh. Hope you’re keeping well. HH
Correct, loved our wee chat. But, after a chat with you, I need a lye down and rest my jaws. Lol. Take care buddy. HH
Answer is they both scored fourteen goals. Strange,as Lubo was regarded as a midfield magician and creator,while The Evil Genius was the predatory striker.
Of course,it was Henrik’s 53 goal season,and while I’ve always said that he only started to become the scorer he became after the arrival of Lubo,he went off the scale when Sutton turned up!
Truly,no man is an island…
You are almost always guaranteed a positive post from The Weatherman.
Lefty, magical to see you posting as well mo chara.
Positive content also.
Not even going to question the improvement how the club is being run – it’s happening and that’s the most important thing.
God bless the Celtic of Glasgow, each and every day.
Footage of yesterday’s wee drinking session appear online 😀
SeS, N.Pearts drumming on that track is brilliant.
Bobby – aye saw that buddy – just yanking yer chain 😁
BRRB – amazing drummer sadly missed.
Craig76 hoi you !! 🤣
Not much to argue with on todays leader, well i think you meant The world is your oyster, not lobster and i see you’re still not putting a space after a comma, my your english teacher has a lot to answer for 🙂 .
Frodsham bhoy, i rarely get replies to any of my posts so don’t despair, i am guilty of not replying to posts also, but thoroughly enjoy reading most of them.
I’m not allowed to meet up with BRRB because I have a drink problem. I only have one mouth. 🙂
Keep on keeping on.
ASWGL and FRODSHAMBHOY, invitation to a sophisticated soiree or drunken riot always open chaps. I’ll provide the buffet. 😂😂
I see that all Celtic Season tickets are now sold out 👏👏👏
I hope that anyone on the waiting list has been successful as I think this could be one helluva Season 🍀🍀🍀
Strap yourself in Bhoys and Ghirls, it’s going to be exciting !!!!!!!
Happy Canada Day, everyone! The World is a better place by having under stated Canada in it!
Froddy, I understand your frustration since I frequently experience it. I think it has to do with the growth of the blog….a lot more posters than there used to be.
Stick around, you are only punishing yourself, or so I found.
I like your posts but I usually just nod agreement to myself.
I know a lot of your posts go unanswered, so, a big happy Canada day, to you.
My Uncle spend 30 years in the Canadian Forces and loved Canada, a wonderful country, he would always say, however, he returned to England when he retired.
A huge Gers fan. He lived in Calgary in Alberta.
A very talented musician, when he returned to Yorkshire, he spent a lot of his time in brass bands. He used to tell me, how frustrated he became when, fellow members were a minute late for practice.
I guess that’s what 30 years of the forces does to you.
With regards the posts, sometimes it’s the luck of the draw, I posted 3 all about football, all different topics, on Sat, I think. Not one reply.
I posted one about birds on Sunday and received loads of replies, much to my delight.
I post all the time and get loads of replies, mostly abusive, but it doesn’t stop me returning for the banter 🙂