Surprise Me


Celtic had a rather pleasant midweek break,which gave our players some time to relax during what is normally a very busy weekend-midweek-weekend schedule. For about as long as I can remember,our lads have been at the coalface on that punishing regime from even before the start of the season. 

Aye,I know. It’s not just Scottish referees who can introduce anomalies. UEFA are quite adept at it,introducing pre-qualifying tournaments for potential European contenders even before their domestic campaign has even begun. It is what it is,huh? 

If you want to play with the big boys,you have to earn the right. It matters not one jot to UEFA that in order to increase your coefficient enough to bypass qualification in future,you have to qualify in the first place. While less deserving teams from apparently superior leagues are airdropped straight into the group stages. And earn those coefficient points accordingly. Keep the big boys happy,hopefully they’ll shut up for a bit. Don’t panic about the “minnows”,nobody cares about them.

So we can complain all we like,nobody listens and nobody cares. In that respect,I suppose it is like the Scottish domestic scene. Everything is geared towards keeping the big boys happy-ask any fan of any club outside of ourselves and the huns and they will tell you the same thing.

Two cheeks of the same arse. When one of you gets a bad decision in that O** F*** game,you never shut up about it. Now you know how it feels,we get them every week-especially against you two!

You’ll all have heard those arguments. Similar to the one trotted out that “these things balance each other out.” Naw,they don’t. A bad decision against you at 0-1 will never be balanced out by a bad decision in your favour at 4-0. Quite simply,two wrongs don’t make a right. And to use the equivalence argument is to give referees in Scotland a free pass to make decisions exactly how they see fit. 

As on Wednesday night,for instance. A classic example of the Teflon effect that is the result of officials facing no sanctions whatsoever for shocking displays. No sanction equals no consequence. No consequence equals no incentive to do the right thing. And when you put a spineless quivering wreck of a man in charge of an important cup tie at Ibrox,you should never be surprised by the outcome. 

Few of us were,in truth. Though even the most hardened of cynics were taken aback by the Collum/Walsh decision not to overrule the opener on Wednesday. But guess what? Apparently,Collum has been sanctioned by his bosses after all. To the extent that he is refereeing on his native territory on Saturday. Nope,not a bounce game between two Sunday League sides-Motherwell v Celtic.  Makes me weep. 

Motherwell are hot off a decent run of form,losing their first league game in five against the huns last weekend. And in typically controversial circumstances. Alan Muir drawing on all his experience to make or ignore decisions as he saw fit,knowing that there was nothing to worry about when he got things wrong. The fix is in,keep the heid and say nothing,let the lads in the press room do the cover up for you. Nary a word was said,except on fan forums. 

A draw last weekend would have seen them in third spot. I think they deserved that at an absolute minimum. Stuart Kettlewell has them performing at their best for quite some time. We meet them on the back of a grievance,never a good time to meet anyone. The only good thing you can say about things is that at least it will be played on grass. 

I was actually quite surprised by the amount of coverage that Collum’s latest shocker got in the SMSM. Made that bit easier of course by how largely uncritical Martindale was about it,and by the eventual 4-0 winning margin. Nobody,though,suggested that Collum and his ilk should face the type of sanction routinely dished out elsewhere to useless officials,such as being downgraded or “rested.” Not at all,just not the way we do things up here. 

Willie will do his rehabilitation in public,starting on Saturday. At Fir Park,which will provide him with the perfect opportunity to prove to everyone that he does not favour The O** F*** over the provincial sides,as has been unfairly alleged. Not at all,and nothing could be further from the truth. 

Expect him to grab this chance with both hands. 

Above article by BMCUWP

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September 29, 2023 8:07 am
September 29, 2023 8:08 am

JOBO POTY competition

Ernie Lynch
September 29, 2023 8:50 am

‘Controversial’ referring decisions provide talking points and help to sustain interest in a game that otherwise isn’t exactly overflowing with intrigue and fascination.

The fact they are skewed in favour of one club and thereby undermine the integrity of the game is of no consequence as that ship sailed a long time ago.

September 29, 2023 9:24 am

Iniqitousiv 4…keep fighting the good fight…my money is on you C

We’ve got a date for next year ;-))
Thanks very much mate! Really appreciate the sentiment.
Unforgettable day yesterday. A real pleasure to meet you and the rest of the lads.
Jokers on the left of me, jokers to the right of me, stuck in the middle with Leggy and BBRB.🤣😅😂

September 29, 2023 9:52 am

Morning all! I couldn’t disagree more, Ernie. “Of no consequence” to whom? VAR was introduced to eradicate exactly the type of error, or talking point we witnessed on Wednesday. It’s purpose has been misused and reinterpreted for the benefit of one club only. Some of the decisions are so clearly wrong as to defy belief, all discussed to death already but the decision by Golum added to a growing long list of calls so bizarre that the only plausible explanation now is blatant cheating. The Motherwell cameras facing the wrong way, Goldson handball x3 or 4 or whatever, the squiggly offside lines, Tavpen last weekend, Bernabei handball versus Dundee Utd, Smith of Hearts handball versus us – all off the top of my head without any thought.
Clarity and understanding was the expectation. No more ‘honest mistakes’. The technology would prove officials were honest pros doing a difficult job in difficult circumstances but the technology would confirm we’ve a level playing field and hey, we were paranoid all along! Not paranoid enough. Nor vocal enough in calling out the mistakes but now it’s easier to call it out, our expectations of what standards should be delivered are now not based on the opinion of one man. His assistant, untouched by bias or baying mobs in a remote, sterile portacabin was supposed to be truthful, balanced, plausible, neutral in raising the standard of officiating and dispelling the beliefs that cheating is endemic.
VAR has proven to be everything we knew Scottish fitba to be – loaded decisions, blatant ignorance of what the eyes clearly see, abdication of responsibility and accountability by match officials,
the SFA and the SPFL, and the clubs, too of course.
Remember Crawford Allen coming out to challenge the Celtic ‘offside goal’ v Hearts. Unprecedented behaviour by the refs’ head, is it of ‘no consequence’ that he’s not been seen since? VAR was his baby, his fix that couldn’t be challenged, there would be teething problems he told us but they’d get it right in the end.
Perhaps you’re right. Maybe we need to keep the interest in the game by regularly having controversial talking points but the law of averages point to far too many decisions skewed to benefit a club everyone seems frightened of and therein lies the crux of the matter.
What hold these peepul have over us!

Bada Bing
September 29, 2023 10:59 am

Mitchel Frame has put pen to paper on a contract extension that will keep him at Parkhead until the summer of 2026.

This bhoy boy has a chance….

Big Audio Dynamite
September 29, 2023 11:03 am

McCaff, the squiggly lines take a bit of beating!! We are co-stars in one of the biggest charades in world sport! Try explaining Scottish football to anyone not familiar with it, they look at you like you’ve lost your marbles. We have been playing our part in this so long, it has just become the norm. No matter how outrageous the cheating (And that’s the only word for it) becomes, people just shrug their shoulders and keep paying to watch a rigged game! Like any actor(s), we seem to be glad to just have the gig. Hard to ignore the thought that we are as much a part of this shit-show as anyone.

Have all the rebels exited stage left??


Ernie Lynch
September 29, 2023 11:11 am


Of no consequence to the integrity of the game. Because professional football in Scotland has no integrity.

It is what it is, and it’s way beyond the point of willingly suspending your disbelief, no point kidding ourselves otherwise.

September 29, 2023 11:12 am

BAD…we expect more from Celtic in terms of calling out this stuff but Celtic should be involved only when it’s games they’re playing. But along with every other club we are paying for this charade and along with every other club bar one we are being short-changed! It’s a dangerous game to make accusations of cheating, not for us but for Celtic, but it’s becoming more and more obvious that cheating is exactly what it is!

September 29, 2023 11:17 am

Ernie…there’s no disbelief suspended on my part, although there was a faint hope that the ‘honest’ mistakes would have been eradicated with the introduction of technology that would scrutinise these occurrences. That it hasn’t tells us how deep the fix is in, that it hasn’t tells us how much the Establishment couldn’t give a tuppeny fuck for anybody other than ONE club and ONE peepul! Despite not having any integrity the game isn’t done but we need clubs to be stronger to challenge what’s going on!

September 29, 2023 11:26 am


In South London in the mid-90s,I took a couple of my workmates to watch a live match down the pub,us against the huns. They couldn’t believe what they were seeing,refereeing like that would never be allowed in England. Etc.

Always been like that,I explained. But they’ll have no hiding place,no deny and deflect,now that games are going to be live on tv regularly. I was wrong on that one! And we all knew that VAR would just be more of the same.

It’s not difficult to cover things up when nobody GAF,is it?

Big Audio Dynamite
September 29, 2023 11:31 am

If you were sat playing in a high stakes poker game and realised you were being cheated, how long would you continue to sit playing in silence?? You wouldn’t sit for one more hand! So there is more going on here ..Maybe more than any of us could believe. Maybe the only people out the loop here, are the people who actually pay to keep the whole charade going!

I’m sick listening to what Celtic CAN’T do because …???
Our silence only makes sense if we are willing partners in this charade.
If anyone has an explanation that makes sense ..I’m all ears!
But it has to be more than us not wanting to be a lone voice ..bollox!!

September 29, 2023 11:41 am

BAD…I agree, mate! But what is it that’s going on. There’s too many parties with different agendas and needs in fitba for it to be Celtic versus everybody else so why has nothing been done. The introduction of VAR was the perfect opportunity to challenge standards of officiating but its not been done, or if it has its not been done loudly enough to create a groundswell for change. As long as Muir, Robertson and Walsh continue to show bias and not-giving-a-fuck-who’s-watching-me attitude and the silence from the clubs continues, their fecking paymasters incidentally, we will be where Ernie says we’ll be – without integrity and playing with loaded dice, or a marked deck if you prefer a poker slant!

September 29, 2023 11:45 am

Yeah, Bobby, We all thought blatant cheating in front of tv cameras broadcasting around the nation and beyond would curtail the cheating. The foul v Livi the other night was so blatant, Golum is a poor ref so an excusecis ready-made for him but I fully expected VAR to review it. That was an unbelievable decision by Walsh unless there was comms between Walsh and Golum that Golum was satisfied Livi player had made too much of it.

Big Audio Dynamite
September 29, 2023 11:54 am

McCaff, ever wonder why some of our online influencers (Of the Tim variety) have spent over a decade calling them Newco?? What was it the Huns said explained them surviving liquidation again?? Hmmm! Why would any one us ever call them that? The only thing that makes sense to me? They are just another part of the charade. If my love for our club wasn’t so ingrained, I’d have walked away laughing at this a long time ago! But that’s the thing ..and they know it!!

September 29, 2023 12:59 pm

BAD…if I’m being totally honest a lot of the Newco/Sevco stuff, the 5WA etc is above my pay grade. I followed the demise of the Huns through the Rangers Tax Case, John James and Phil McG websites and was pretty clued up on what was happening but the conspiracy stuff regarding Celtic’s involvement was always just outside my understanding. So, if the VAR stuff falls into the category of a bigger picture of treachery and deceit I’m not getting it.

Big Audio Dynamite
September 29, 2023 1:13 pm


I just can’t escape the feeling we are willing participants in keeping the whole charade rolling along …what else makes sense? We know the game is bent outa shape, it’s just how bent we are still to determine! I sometimes think I don’t want to know how deep the chicanery really goes, as that would entail walking away from Celtic for good.

Just thinking out loud buddy.

HH 🍀

September 29, 2023 1:20 pm

BAD…yip! At our age we’ve lost our wide-eyed innocent romanticism of what Celtic means but we’re still heavily invested in the emotion of what it means to be a part of it. My wee guy has the innocent love of it and it’s great to see it but we do have conversations where I try to explain reality to him. I feel bad doing it because nobody ever did that to me, I was allowed to grow up believing we were different and there’s a wee tiny part of me still believes we are but it diminishes proportionately with my waistline growing and my hairline receding! 🤣🤣🤣

September 29, 2023 1:22 pm

The last bit was a lie, my hair’s fine…but the waistline, and the teeth, are a definite cause for concern!! 🤔🙄🤣

Big Audio Dynamite
September 29, 2023 1:29 pm

McCaff, I could have wrote that …apart from the waistline thing! 😉 I have exactly the same situation with my wee guy ..I’ve now just started allowing him the chance enjoy Celtic the way I did at his age. He is a mad Hooper, and I don’t want to do anything that might ruin that for him.

September 29, 2023 3:39 pm

As we near the next meeting of the CPG on the future of Scottish football, I have a number of fears. The SFSA fan led review was presented in June of this year, and here we are into October before it gets a public debate, outside of football blogs. Perhaps, the Oct 4 meeting will push forward an agenda for the reform of the governance of the Scottish game, perhaps it will signal something else.

At the last of two meetings in 2021, the minutes indicated that the group intended to hold at least three meetings in 2022. They held ONE in December. Perhaps, some may argue there was a pandemic at that time. But wait, meetings can now be virtual, the group encourages that. So, why only one meeting?

More importantly, none of the existing aims of the group specifically include governance of the game. So, why has a review with reform of governance as a main theme, been referred to this particular group? Puzzling, indeed 🙈 Surely, establishing a new group with the sole aim of addressing governance issues would be the better option, given the diverse objectives of the existing group? Perhaps, that will emerge from the next meeting. At least, it would be some form of progress.

Even more important, however, is the limited role of CPGs, in general. On the positive side, they encourage open debate amongst MPs and wider publics, including you and I. However, the CPG is firmly capped on what it can do. It is more informative to mention what it cannot do. It cannot raise an issue in Parliament for debate. Nor can it raise an issue with the Scottish Government. So, the SFSA report, devised by the sweat of many brows, can be debated in a forum that meets once or twice a year to discuss issues ranging from accessibility, through the impact of clubs on their community, to establishing the innovation of an independent regulator. Whatever emerges from that, if anything at all, cannot directly stimulate a Parliamentary debate, nor action by the Government. I am struggling to see this as anything other than a parking device for forgotten reports.

Who says politicians(small and capital P) are not clever? Grasshopper, your task is to find me a deep hole, a very deep hole, and drop this thing in it.

Such a parcel of rogues!


Mike in Toronto
September 29, 2023 4:05 pm

Do people think Celtic means to the newer generation what it meant to previous generations?

Growing up, my view (perhaps a naive one) was that Celtic was about community, in the broader sense. My support was tied to my heritage – Irish/Scottish and Catholic. As long as the club represented those things with dignity, then results were always secondary. As soon as I understood what Rangers stood for, no matter how successful Rangers were, I could never have supported them.

My sense (but said as someone who lives here, and I used to get my nephews up to watch the games with me, but they have long since given up) is that religion and culture plays a much smaller role in people’s lives these days, and so, will play a much smaller role in connecting kids to the club. Without that grounding, how will the Club continue to attract youngsters?

You see loads of kids here wearing football jerseys. But Itlalians wear Juventus and such. And everyone wears Real Madrid shirts or Man United. Hell, I know more Irish kids (kids of friends) who support Liverpool or Barcelona rather than Celtic. Dont see a lot of Celtic jerseys any more.

Support seems more tied to success these days.

I think I am safe in saying that, if Celtic was more successful in Europe, more kids (Scottish and otherwise) would follow Celtic. If the cultural roots connecting the support to the club dwindle, and the connection is based on mainly success (at least, domestically), does it follow then that, if Celtic ceases to be the top dog in Scotland, will it further lose support?

Does Celtic have a plan to stem the loss of support to ‘the big clubs’? It needs to as there seems to be no discernable plan to compete in Europe, and has focussed on domestic success. But, if that domestic success ebbs, will the support similarly drop?

Mike in Toronto
September 29, 2023 4:16 pm

In saying it is different, I’m not saying it is better or worse … just different. And, in the past, the Club could pull the heart strings to raise funds, but I’m just not sure that they can rely upon that to the degree they could in the past, and wonder if there is any plan going forward to retain, ir not increase, fanbase.

I havent been to the Supporters club in a decade probably … but even from the time I started going to when I stopped, there was a noticable difference in the demographics… the crowed aged, and there were fewer and fewer young people joining… so as older people stopped going, the numbers were droppiing….

ST sales have obviously been steady… so perhaps it is different…..but I do wonder about the business model ….is there a plan for the future?

September 29, 2023 4:21 pm


I think a key is exposure through the media. Kids in other countries can easily see RM, Barcelona, Juventus, Liverpool etc. They are all on TV, streaming somewhere.

Exposure to the SPL is very limited in other countries, much of the awareness of Celtic is through CSA, which, in my experience are ageing populations.


Bada Bing
September 29, 2023 4:36 pm

Reo- 5 year deal….Matt next

September 29, 2023 4:49 pm

MikeInTVLawyerland…decent enough points but to answer you’d need to look back rather than forward, I think! Where and when did we lose the natural affinity with the Club, if it has indeed been lost. Perhaps the change in working patterns leading to more leisure time, the sharper focus on whole-family leisure time, the easier access to other sports via new media, the lazier newer generations happy to define fitba by PS and XBox terminology rather than go and kick a ba’ in the park, more cars driving kids off their traditional playground outside the house, the fearful parents keeping kids in their eye-line. All gamechangers from the culture in which we were raised. Add in the money available to any of the Big 5 Leagues and the introduction, principally to City and PSG, of Oil Money but now expanded due to Saudi aspirations. And all the while the Scottish game appears to self destruct and unable to move with the times.
It seems there’s no single reason for where we are other than our own stoic, myopic, conservative nature.

Mike in Toronto
September 29, 2023 4:50 pm


True. But the cultural roots, at least as it relates to football, seem stronger with other cultures. As I said, I know lots of Irish/Scottish kids who pick Ronaldo as their favourite player and/or Liverpool as their favourite team. But all the Italian kids support Italian teams first… they like other teams, but they hold their family traditions dear. Just my sense, so others may see it differently ….

big packy
September 29, 2023 5:06 pm

AFTERNOON ALL AND JiMTHETIM53 ,reading back, regarding the cheating it was going on when my uncle packy used to lift me over the turnstile at parkhead in the sixties ,as a poster called THE EXILED TIM who used to post on here, used to say get rid of the orange lodge in Scotland and that might go a long way of getting rid of the bigotry,,another true story.LOL 😂

September 29, 2023 5:12 pm


In my previous reply I set out what decisions have to be made at SG led SFSA meeting

SFA governance is one of the strongest part of the SFSA Review as reported by SC at

So it is wrong to say it does not feature.

However my fear is that it will get the priority it deserves.

I feared it after the launch in June which is why I asked to engage with Fulton McGregor soon after which eventually happened last month when I put forward why an outcome of the October meeting should be a commitment to that effect.

You can take a horse to the well but it will only drink if its thirsty.

I’ve made the case as I see it and await to see if my input is heeded or SFSA and SG continue to ignore what I told Fulton McGregor and H McLeish is the elephant in the room that demands proper oversight of SFA.

big packy
September 29, 2023 6:01 pm

kennaway hogg and morrison geatons lyon and patterson ,cyber pint if you can name the forward line,??

Mike in Toronto
September 29, 2023 6:26 pm

I have never really been a huge golf fan … but there is something about the Ryder Cup…. produces some of the most fun, captivating sports on TV. (particularly if the yanks lose).

September 29, 2023 6:54 pm

Evening all,

Mike in Toronto,

Agreed, The Ryder Cup was superb entertainment today.

And Bob McIntyre managed a half as well !!!!

Gon the Europe ( Ole,Ole,Ole ) 👍👍👍👍👍

September 29, 2023 7:03 pm

Evening all.

Just caught the BBC Scotland sport news just now.

Roughly went Golf (Ryder Cup), Sevco, Roofe’s injury, Mick Mole followed by,

‘Lastly, a wee bit of football, Reo Hatatae signs a 5 year contract at Celtic’

Hurting huns right enough.


Mike in Toronto
September 29, 2023 7:41 pm

Saw a list recently of people that Real have spoken to, or will be speaking to, about replacing Ancelloti at the end of the season…

Xavi Alonso … not long in managment, but has done wonders so far with Leverkeusen….

Klopp … his star has faded a bit this past year … would need a good year this year with Liverpool to get the nod I think…

Zidane … 3rd time’s a charm? cant beat his record … apparenty wants to get back to managing, and apparently he is Perez’ choice …

Raul … doing well with their second team …. no top flight experience, but that was the same path trod by Zizou, and he did pretty well ….

Roberto De Zerbi … his teams play great attacking football …. so, who wouldnt want him? but, for some reason, he seems more like a Barca guy to me…

but, realistically, any club would be happy to have any one of these guys…

September 29, 2023 7:55 pm

From Celtic TV.

It was on September 29, 1982, that Charlie Nicholas scored the goal of his career in the Olympic stadium, beating two defenders and gloriously chipping the keeper.

Bonner had the game of his life in goals by defying the Ajax forwards and was only beaten by a deflection.

With Cruyff withdrawn through injury after a long, slow departure from the field in 85 minutes to a rapturous ovation, Celtic took advantage of his absence by nicking the winner through George McCluskey. The players and fans celebrated wildly in the late Amsterdam night.

Classic Celtic Matches | Ajax 1-2 Celtic | 29/09/1982)



Just before the second goal, Danny’s shot reminded me of the goal in the 1980 SC Final.

Same combination, well, nearly. 🙂


September 29, 2023 8:01 pm

Delighted that Reo has extended his contract till 2028. Hopefully he will soon be back to his best,and can also improve his game under BR.

September 29, 2023 8:06 pm

Big Audio Dynamite

I just can’t escape the feeling we are willing participants in keeping the whole charade rolling along …what else makes sense? We know the game is bent outa shape, it’s just how bent we are still to determine! I sometimes think I don’t want to know how deep the chicanery really goes, as that would entail walking away from Celtic for good.

Just thinking out loud buddy.

HH 🍀
That is quite a logical if hard to accept conclusion that for years we have allowed ourselves to be misled.


I replied to Rebus 67 iro the forthcoming meeting of the SG and SFSA but it seem to have turned into more green steam and evaporated.

September 29, 2023 8:13 pm

I don’t see any reference to this

Which could mean Celtic are working under the radar to get other clubs involved in asking questions.


It means SFA.

September 29, 2023 8:20 pm

Ernie Lynch

Of no consequence to the integrity of the game. Because professional football in Scotland has no integrity.

It is what it is, and it’s way beyond the point of willingly suspending your disbelief, no point kidding ourselves otherwise.
The last shred of any integrity of Scottish Football was killed by the 5WA which Celtic saw and accepted

Only the ditching of the 5WA and the horsemen who rode on it.

Eric Reilly
Ron Petrie
Neil Doncaster etc can restore any semblance of integrity to our game and I don’t see that happening in spite of all the evidence presented to supporters of the game.

It’s like the illegitimate family member no one wants to acknowledge.

September 29, 2023 8:23 pm


Sorry I could not meet up but glad you enjoyed the company as I knew you would.

September 29, 2023 8:30 pm

Just fewer than 20 punters still to do their Superbru predictions

September 29, 2023 8:43 pm

Some goings on I reckon few are aware of from SFSA Chairman Andy Smith.

September 29, 2023 9:41 pm


Reinstated. Bit of a puzzle,as the filters were pretty much cleared at the weekend to prevent stuff being blocked accidentally.

September 29, 2023 9:46 pm


There weren’t really all that many young kids at the football when I was at,say,primary school,and there still aren’t that many. The thing is,there were a lot of teenagers going back then,and that definitely isn’t the case so much these days.

I think it’s really in your teens/early 20s that people get the bug,”get” the club and what it’s all about. And if they’ve missed that vital period,just before other responsibilities kick in,it is unlikely ever to happen.

Definitely a concern.

September 29, 2023 9:49 pm


Hun basterts,dripping right out of them. Can you imagine the fanfare if Kent had signed a new deal a year ago? They’d have done an hour-long feature on it.

September 29, 2023 10:38 pm


I did not say that the SFSA review did not mention governance. I said that governance was not directly mentioned as one of the aims of the CPG that is concerned with football in Scotland.

That group already has a very diverse set of aims. Tacking on the issues contained in the SFSA report is pure nonsense. The group cannot deal with them, given their other objectives. I fear the regulator proposal will disappear under a plethora of other issues, which is what I think you are saying?


Margaret McGill
September 29, 2023 11:20 pm
September 29, 2023 11:50 pm

Thanks mate! I’ll do a better job of coordinating a meet next time!
Iniquitous IV

September 30, 2023 12:08 am