Money Can’t Buy You…
Well,that’s the first legs of the Champions League Group of 16 over and done with. Some of the world’s richest and most famous clubs didn’t even make it that far,including the likes of Manchester United,Barcelona and Juventus. Others still look like going out at this early stage in the next few weeks,and that includes for instance either PSG or Bayern Munich.
But this article is focused mainly on the underachievements of English clubs in this competition,particularly since any pretence of it being for champions was ditched around twenty years ago. There are now four countries with four entries each to the group stages-England,Italy,Spain and Germany-while France and Portugal get three each. A number of others also get two direct entries,plus another one into the qualifying rounds.
Champions League? Closed shop for the rich,where entry improves your coefficient for future entries,while missing out doesn’t. Virtually a self-contained cycle,an Old Boy’s Club in all but name.
But let’s focus for a bit on the performances of the English clubs in that twenty years. At the current stage,only Manchester City are level going into the second leg. Chelsea and Spurs have a one goal deficit to overcome,all three ties at home. Liverpool though have it all to do,after surrendering 5-2 at home to Real Madrid.
Yet,during this period in question,the English clubs have been hoovering up TV and commercial income and putting clear daylight between themselves and the European rivals,the exceptions being Bayern,PSG,Barca and Real. Others simply cannot keep up. English clubs have also been major beneficiaries of the nouveau riche sources of wealth in the game,whether that be Russian oligarchs,gulf state sovereign funds,or US tycoons.
And with income from TV and commercial sources this year expected to be more than £6bn,that doesn’t look likely to stop any time soon.
So,with these major advantages which allow English clubs to invest heavily in the world’s best players,we should expect them to be winning the trophy on a regular basis. Yet that is not the case. Only five successes in that period,and only two of them against foreign opposition. English clubs have been finalists fourteen times in eleven different finals,but these mark a dreadfully poor return for all the largesse lavished on salaries and transfer fees.
The question is-why? Is it because the EPL is “the best League in the world”? It is regularly proclaimed to be-in England!-but the above stats give the lie to that. Is it because it is so competitive domestically? Well,the usual suspects year after year suggests that it is not as competitive as some. It is almost always perm any four from six,with the occasional outlier like Leicester. Even Italy and Spain have more teams coming from nowhere to qualify,and Spain in particular has a much better record in the event.
Is it then that European football is like a whole new ball game for English clubs more used to the pace and press of the domestic league? That they find it difficult to cope with the organised defensive lines they face in Europe,much less the lightning speed at which those opponents will break when they get the ball?
I think that may well be the answer,that they simply cannot adapt to such a strategy at the top level,the later stages. Others amongst you will have your own ideas on this,and I’d love you to let us know your thoughts on that. But it seems fairly obvious that Europe is too often a bridge too far for English clubs grown fat on the easy riches available domestically. There are surely less expensive hobbies for these oligarchs and tycoons than are available in England. And some of them promise more success for a fraction of the price.
Above article by BMCUWP
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You very rarely get Sky to say the game you are watching is rubbish, as far as they are concerned its the best league in the universe. Blinkers brigade.
As for European games always enjoy them getting beat, well apart from Everton but that’s not happening soon.
I recently did a bit of searching regarding UCL finalists and found out a few facts which basically prove what everyone suspects. This tournament is set up to keep the big 5 leagues sweet. Since the format changed in 1995/6 to allow Liverpool back in and add extra teams from these 5 countries only Porto have reached a final outside of them. 51 out of 52 finalists are from big 5.
Prior to that year there had been 80 finalists and 24 of them were from outside the big 5 leagues. There was a more level playing field then and more teams with home grown players also. Money and Sky sponsorship along with suspected under the table dealings is ruining the sport we all grew up loving. The English can’t even get a manager to win their own league for gods sake.
The lack of a winter break and 2 cup competitions. Is the main reason I reckon. These factors are not figured into any kind of fair play algorithm which inhibits the English sides. Describing billionaire participation in European football as expensive hobbies is in my opinion misleading. They are in it for the money. Soft power is a gladly accepted by product of their involvement. Risk would be a better way of describing it. The profit and the soft power attained I personally don’t believe is enough for such politically inert greedy bastards to be convinced. There must be something else. Lack of government focus due to UEFA stipulations allowing the ideal money laundering facility is an added attraction for them. Brexit has encouraged this in England even more so. More billionaires vying for top spot in England due to the decreased off shore activities and possibilities that Europe is curtailing whereas in England it’s being encouraged even under the new suggested football regulator.
The article you reference is now 6 years old. The Brexit dividend/ scam is in plain sight for those who want to see.
The City of London has always played by its own rules. The 100 plus Livery Companies are significant in finance and networking and are styled “ Worshipful Companies” for a reason.
Good Morning Timland – Grand Day To Be A Celt
Reading back last evening, probably inspired by Matt – I awoke with a song to inspire our new young striker to win us the game on Sunday…
Hymn To Our Korean Diamond
Oh – we remember when we had Yueng
He shone better than Son
Shine on you Korean Diamond
Playing at Parkhead in the night, under bright disco light
Shine on you Korean diamond
Get into the crossfire of Jota, Hatate, scoring with steel ease
Come on you target for Mooy and Haska
Follow Kyogo, Meada, Abada and shine
Chairbhoy @ 6:44 am – Absolutely brilliant! 👏😎
Only problem is that Oh more than likely won’t be in Sunday’s starting eleven.
Maybe your dream will come to realisation, and Oh will score the winner,off the bench, however I’m praying that we’ll have put der zombie to sleep by half time!
Zero interest in football nowadays, obviously Celtic being the exception – did watch snippets of the CL games midweek – couldn’t help but thinking (somewhat ruefully perhaps) Celtic would have greatly enhanced the knockout stages of said tournament
Ah well there’s always next season sure.
Have to disagree. We are not battle ready for the last 16 of the elite tournament.
We’d be making up the numbers and not greatly enhancing the competition.
We should not overburden expectations.
Our progress in Europe will be incremental.
Third place is the target in our CL group next season with drop down to Europa, and a good run there.
‘24/‘25 we should be aiming for top 24 out of 36 teams competing.
We have to be realistic.
I’m with you. Outside of Celtic, I find little to interest me in football nowadays.
Bobby’s article I couldn’t argue with. Money talks. For me the best players are all pretty much at Madrid.
Watched the highlights.
City have Haaland and De Bruyne.
Liverpool? Salah and Van Dijk a shadow of their former talents for whatever reason. It showed.
Madrid will win it.
All of the best players on Sunday will be wearing the hoops. If it comes down to skill Celtic win. The best manager will lead out the hoops.
The most influential people however may be wearing black.
I’ll get my fill watching the juniors on Saturday and the under 17’s on Sunday morning.
I’ll then head to the hills until time up at Hampden. If skill has prevailed I’ll sit and enjoy the match. If not, the footage will never see the light of day.
Hope this link works.
Especially for ATOB ( Top Footballing Tipster ) 👍
Sit back and enjoy, The Maestro at his best 🍀🍀
Cheers, a wee bit of fun…
Against my sincere wishes to blow them away, I think the game maybe be tight and a substitute will score the winning goal.
Agree re: the knockouts, the way Celtic play football we will surely enhance the knockout stages, haven’t seen anything to suggest we can’t reach that level (tis the way I sees it CFC, though agree top 24)
Also Liverpool’s result against Real Madrid and losing 5-2 after going two up means Ange’s critics may want to look at our games in Spain against Real Betis and Real Madrid and give Ange a break
We have improved since those games as well.
Replied to your lead earlier this morning and it disappeared into the ether…
Promise I won’t disagree with you again;)
Happy to disagree with those carrying huge expectations of where we are in an Euro context.
We lost 1-8 and 1-5 to Madrid and Leipzig on aggregate 4/5 months ago. What has changed to think we would be more competitive?
How does that indicate enhancing anything?
We need to make steady progress by finding our feet in Europe, starting with a third place finish and Europa challenge.
The season after next is the game changer in Euro competition.
Bundesliga closer than it’s been for a while.
Nothing at this end,I’m afraid.
Good morning, friends. 3 more Big sleeps to navigate and I still remain confident that we will lift the trophy in 90 minutes with the outcome “neverv in doubt”.
Yes the English electorate can go without eggs, tomatoes, fresh fruit and vegetables and have to request baby products from behind the counter due to necessary thefts while Waitrose has a contribute to food bank range happy in the knowledge that the multi millionaires are being looked after. The collapse of a civilization in slow motion. It’s the same like minded peasants that are holding Scotland back.
BMCUWPS @ 8:54 am,
Cheers for checking, normally c&p before I post so…
Suffice to say on a SC in a parallel universe a BMCUWPS will find a fine retort:))
Have a great day all…
I agree. Eintracht got gubbed at home against Napoli. We need to concentrate on getting a CL position through a BL top 4 finish. That’s the kind of steady development we need buy backing Ange in the transfer market while controlling the finances unlike Napoli. I feel we are still on the right path even if the huns are bestowed both cups
Stupidity and deference are the Nation’s default setting. And the establishment n spiv enablers/ hanger ons laugh all the way to the (non food) bank.
Ange has us on the right path, and we need him to see us through to the CL in ‘24/‘25.
Keep unrealistic expectations in check, but always be ambitious to reach the next level and sustain that.
Our reach should always exceed our grasp.
There is no way, under the present set up, that a club from outwith the top five leagues can realistically challenge for the Champions League. Even Ajax, with their superb youth programme, can, if they have a bumper crop, reach the odd quarter or semi final, immediately after which the squad is sold off for mega bucks to teams in the big five.
Celtic, if we keep Ange or recruit someone as able, and continue to play the transfer market as well as we have recently, can make incremental improvements. We should aim to reach the knock out stage of Champions League in season 24/25. This presupposes that we win our domestic league in each of the next two seasons.
Ange’s approach is correct. We have our style of play. We aim to improve every game, and therefore every season, either by recruitment or by player development. All other matters like VAR, press conferences, Sevco same club,or not, are sideshows compared to us putting the best team we can onto the park. We can see how Ange is totally focussed on this.
He has done a fantastic job to assemble a strong squad, all of whom have bought into his ideas, and who keep going till the end . We really are witnessing something special here.
In today’s other news…the V&A have been loaned 80000 of Bowie items. Would love to see that at Dundee!
EPL underachievement vs La Liga overachievement.
RM to the fore — peaking at the right time on a regular basis / interesting …
Total focus on winning at all costs — opposition threats cemented on a regular basis.
Plenty of Cup players in the team — 38 game league too much of a drag in a lot of seasons.
7 game spring competition is so much more “their” thing.
Total focus on the CL — pulling every stroke.
EPL has an issue with the lagging nature of the CL — based on last year’s performances.
Chelsea and L/pool are dog meat in the EPL — this season’s CL failure should not be a surprise.
Only two of this season’s CL contenders — EPL Top 4 — are in this season’s CL and Spurs are hanging on by the skin of their teeth.
Then you have the allocation of the TV money — the EPL spread the wealth / everybody gets a sizeable cut.
Means that the EPL is much more competitive to a much deeper level than other leagues.
Chairbhoy @ 6:44 am – Good Stuff ✅
On the subject of Oh am I the only one that thinks he has a look of Ben Doak about him.
We had high hopes for Doak, hope Oh fulfils them.
Things holding us back …
PL and his active incompetence.
DD and his passive mis-management.
The board and their lack of vision / ambition / drive.
Then we have the SPL and its lack of engagement.
Not wanting to go toe to toe with us — the potential of 4 heavy defeats overshadows the potential of 2 close games / wins.
Huge difference in the attitude / ambition of local opposition — league games vs cup games.
SPL Pot hunter viewpoint in parts of the support.
TFOD2.1 living rent free in too many heads.
Things only become live if they do it first.
Lazy board — doing as little as possible.
Scottish cringe — not for the likes of us.
Lack of ambition in the support.
Who needs to plan for the future?
If it was good enough for me at 30 — it will be good enough at 60/70/80.
SPL generates sloppy attitudes.
Great chance — not an issue if you miss / there will be another great chance on offer soon enough.
At least AP is giving it his best shot with no excuses.
The board must be scared fartless that it might work and horizons are lifted.
£200mill T/O by 2030 — one can but hope.
And dream of post Christmas Euro credibility.
CL — needs work to support teams coming second in the group stages.
Usual suspects pushing third over second as it offers more opportunity in the EuL.
Not good — maybe there should be a CL “Bowl” competition for the losers in the last 16.
If EUFA won’t organise it maybe others will lead.
Winning the EC / CL — you have to wonder what passes for ambition in certain parts.
Back in the day — 10 years plus of evidence — no one thought that a team from northern Europe would win it.
Until someone did and the viewpoint was shown up to be the lazy folklore / mythology that it was.
The issue for everybody outside the Big leagues is to hold onto talent for an extra couple of years.
At the moment the focus is take the big cheques as soon as one is presented.
You have overlooked the sea change in CL format from ‘24/‘25. A 36 team competition with no opportunities to drop down to EL.
So our ambition should always be represented in the CL.
CFC @ 10.37
If that is the case — no EuL opportunity — then we need to make sure we make the Last 16.
This season — Last 16.
All the group winners were away from home.
4 are ahead — Napoli / Bayern / RealM / Benfica.
1 team is drawing — Man City.
3 lost — includes Spurs and Chelsea along with Porto.
Napoli are the team to watch / learn from.
Spurs and Chelsea look like they have other issues.
Spurs — what is more important just now?
1) Good run in this year’s CL?
2) Qualification for next year’s CL?
The issue is that it looks like 2 is the more important.
The 16 Teams finishing 9-24 play a two leg round and the winners play in a last 16 round v one of the top 8.
So 4 home games minimum, a further two if we were to reach last 16.
26 counties — new political dynamics now coming to the fore …
Who would have thought it with an insurgent party scaring the old duopoly fartless?
Straight out of the same playbook that gave us ISIS.
Only invented to challenge Al Qaeda — they needed competition in the mental as anything market.
The current wave of anti-immigrant protests in the 26 counties seems to follow a similar path.
Split up the growing support of the insurgent party.
I can see blueshirts hanging on the washing lines soon.
Only to disappear when SF implodes as it surely will.
Stuff the lot of them always has a short shelf life.
CFC @ 11.03
Thanks for the update / detail.
Top 36 is a must — to get into the CL and the 4 homes games in the autumn.
Top 24 gets you a post Christmas tie and a win gets you into the Last 16.
What can we hope for next season if we are involved — Top 16 would be my hope / Top 24 realistic?
Need to support AP and his growth agenda — £150mill T/O should be the target.
Board would be scared fartless.
CFC/Twisty/Chairbhoy – Thanks for the replies.
Not for a moment was I suggesting that we would win the CL,as of now – we have however improved markedly since the group stages.
Furthermore, what I can say without doubt is that we would defeat Lpool, possibly RB Leipzig and Inter Milan as well.
No Idea as to why Madrid continue to excel in said tournament, given the fact they are trailing a mediocre Barcelona outfit in La liga.
Maybe it’s down to experience,whereas Celtic are always that wee bit naive in Europe.
“Then you have the allocation of the TV money — the EPL spread the wealth / everybody gets a sizeable cut.
Means that the EPL is much more competitive to a much deeper level than other leagues.”
Yet those much more competitive teams rarely qualify for Europe. Again,there tends to be one or two vying for a lower European spot,but they can’t take that step up to do so on a regular basis.
Also,there are 32 teams playing tonight in those two lower level European trophies. Only one of them-Man Utd-is English. Seems that being “competitive to a much deeper level” in the EPL is counterproductive to continued progress there,or at all in Europe.
Not sure I share your optimism.
How do we know we have improved since November? In a Euro sense?
Beating SPFL cannon fodder isn’t any basis for assessment.
Suddenly we are good enough to beat a Bundesliga team currently 4 points off the top? That beat us 1-5 on aggregate.
The only indicator is a 2-2 with a fellow failed CL team on Jan 2nd.
And they got humped 1-7 by Liverpool. At home.
The burden of over expectation.
Let’s see where we are next season.
Conjecture today isn’t worth very much.
These negative waves about Celtic in the run up to the game are reaching a level of satirical self parody.
A sportsite called Glasgow World has the following headline on one of their stories:-
“Celtic ‘rejected’ by Premier League midfielder as Rangers ‘eye up’ to five new signings”
RIP John Motson. A proper commentator, way beyond numpties like Matterface and whoever was on the City game last night.
CL this season — some good play / performances but very poor results.
Us — 30’ish chances / 4 goals for …
Them — 30+ chances / 15 goals against.
Moral / life lesson — need for more focus and less SPL sloppiness.
The RB Leipzig games were the big disappointment — ran out of steam and picked off.
Over the piece our performances went down slightly — I fear that the WC was a heavy weight for the squad.
That and our lack of experience at this level — manager and players together.
We were not that far off in talent but getting lapped regarding belief / experience.
Consequently looking forward — we are in a much better place.
The WC has gone and now certain players can focus on club football.
The extra training ground time is starting to show itself on the park.
We have improved the squad and the focus is better.
AJ is more consistent than JJ.
OH-g is more settled than GG.
YK is a more experienced / complete player than MoJ — hopefully he gets more game time soon.
TI looks to be a very accomplished player than OA — desperate to see him play more.
The last two would appear to be in for the long haul and hopefully they help take us to the next level.
2nd Jan looks to have had an illness dimension.
All could fall apart but I think progress has been made / will continue to be made.
Lots to play for and next season will be huge.
More self belief and experience will allow the talent / ability to shine.
BMCUW @ 12.33’ish
EPL vs EuL / ConL — it just doesn’t register with the mid table clubs.
There are few places available and even if they get in most EPL sides threat them as the League Cup with airmiles.
A lot of teams / leagues do not put in their best efforts
Bundesliga last season — only EF tried a leg.
It was important to them and it showed.
BD / RBL — phoned it in.
If they make it to the QF’s — Spanish and Portugese teams have a history of going all in.
They seem to engage the same special powers that RM use in the CL rounds.
Very well worn route.
Indeed,Motty was a proper commentator of the old school. Knew when to speak,knew when to let the viewer interpret the game on his own terms.
And didn’t annoy us either with an endless spiel of meaningless statistics,compiled for him by the back office. He had his own knowledge of the facts,and only related the relevant ones.
Sadly,those days are gone.
CFC – Hope springs eternal, I suppose.
It’s difficult to argue with the points you’ve made, and I respect what you’re saying.
When that wee Celtic team click though..a very good side they are.
A game of football lasts for over 90 minutes,see when they hit that 15-20 minute spell in games – no team can live with them,in Scotland or Europe.
Trying to maintain it is the issue,could well be humanly impossible
Ye won’t see many performances as good as Reo Hatate’s was against Aberdeen, irrespective of the environment,or the opposition.
Progressive is an understatement.
Kevin De Bruyne is considered to be the best midfielder in England, possibly Europe.
Reckon there’d be uproar if Celtic were to swap Hatate for KDB.
Apologies for the KDB acronym – couldn’t be bothered Googling his name again to copy and paste the correct spelling.
Hurry up Sunday!
echo what sol kitts said, John motson a proper commentator R.I.P
as regards celtic in europe we are a long way from the champions league, but if we can keep ange and keep improving the squad the europa league is well worth a shout👍
One problem with Europa League,starting 24/25,is that we will only be eligible for it if we don’t win the SPL. No losers chances,dropping into it after a failed CL campaign.
And none of us want that.
BOBBY we will win the SPL, sol kitts told me👍🤩
The board are “Scared fartless” about the plans Ange may have?
They secretly don’t want him to be successful?
The people who actually hired the man are going out their way to try and hobble him?
Ange hasn’t a clue that he’s being undermined from within?
This what you want readers on here to believe is true?
People usually hire others hoping they are successful, no? you are saying the opposite is true here?
You really think Dermot became a billionaire conducting business in this fashion?
Given that you’ve repeated this dozens of time on here …can I ask how you know the board are doing this?
echo what sol kitts said, John motson a proper commentator R.I.P
Wonder how he’d cope with someone like Jamie Carragher beside him. Guy never shuts up. I wear out the batteries on my remote pressing mute button. Often when I risk putting sound back on he’s still talking
FRODSHAMBHOY, yes even wee joan cant understand a word he says, and she was born just up the road from him.H.H 🤩🤩
cant get that SPL off my blog name, must have pressed the wrong key, where is ASWGL when you need him🤩