End Of The Month Blues


The last weekend of the month is often a difficult time for most of us. Fortunately,it falls on a weekend this month,which means most of us will already have been paid and that the financial woes of the last few weeks are already a memory. Though just waiting to be replaced in a couple of weeks by more of the same!

So it is too for many companies,including football clubs. We read frequently about clubs struggling to meet the wage bill,or falling behind in their tax/VAT or business rates payments. This is a particular problem for seasonal businesses,and there can be few more seasonal than football. Clubs know in advance when the league campaign starts and ends,and they know too which cups they will enter. They can budget for that,but the big problem is budgeting for June and July when there is no matchday income.

The sale of season tickets can alleviate these worries,of course-but not all clubs can fill their grounds every week with a season ticket uptake of around 90% of capacity,all of which is rather conveniently paid in advance. Even those tickets sold on a finance scheme are paid for in advance by the relevant finance company,which makes its money on the usurious interest rates charged. 

What is common to all clubs,big or small,is that they have to live within the version of FSR adopted by the league structure in which they operate. And that they operate on a financial year which ends on 30th June. We’ve all seen the last minute scratching around as clubs try to balance the books for FSR purposes,which has taken on a greater importance than the simple ethos of running a firm to be in the black at that time. Call it Mr Micawber economics,if you like. Or call it panic on the streets of…

Well,Raith is the obvious answer for those of us with long memories and a dark sense of humour! But the truth is that most clubs at the higher ends of competition,no matter the country in which they operate,are really struggling to meet the requirements of the new Financial Sustainability Regulations,never mind the requirements of our Charles Dickens character. And some are resorting to the already-sanctioned method of swapping players between them then inflating the value for each player in the transaction. Witness the one between Aston Villa and Chelsea earlier in the week which saw bit-part players or loanees move for a combined fee approaching £60m. This for two players who in most estimations are worth about a quarter of that. On a good day. 

Barcelona and Juventus pulled that stroke about five years ago. It went unchallenged by UEFA/FIFA,but their domestic football authorities threw the book at them,in the process banning this particular abuse of the system. I expect this to be adopted by football authorities everywhere soon,and is actually overdue. By five years,the precedent having already been set. Clampdown on new methods of evasion will be dealt with rather more swiftly,I think. 

But what does this have to do with Celtic,you may well ask? It’s a question which seems to arise quite a lot when I think about the game on a more global rather than parochial scale,but the truth is we can no longer paddle our own canoe. No club can. Gone are the days of the sugar daddy,the self-made middle-class local businessman done good. Replaced first by über-rich family concerns like the Glazers or Randy Lerner at Villa,then by the oligarchs with Abramovich and Usmanov to the fore. Their day too has come and gone,even Chinese billionaires and US hedge funds have had their fingers burned at clubs throughout the continent-with the notable exception of Germany of course. Nowadays, to be a successful club at the top level,you have to be funded by a petrostate/sovereign wealth fund. 

But even that is not enough,thanks to our new pal,FSR. Saudi Arabia could fund Newcastle United sufficiently to buy up the best players anywhere,and win everything in sight for decades to come. They wouldn’t even miss the outlay,it’s money down the back of the settee to them. A rounding error. FSR has seen that particular avenue closed off,at least until the clubs come up with a creative means of evasion. But we always come back to that date. 30th June. Tomorrow. 

For that is when the books have to be finalised and signed off-and a whole new cycle can begin once more. Breathe a sigh of relief-or cross your fingers and hope the accounts aren’t scrutinised too closely-and dive into the next spending campaign. Secure in the knowledge that you can spread the cost of player purchases over as long as five years (a rule tightened up only recently after abuse by Chelsea in particular) while booking income from outgoing transfers immediately. Let tomorrow worry about tomorrow,it’s kid in a sweetie shop time!

As things stand,this is hardly a problem for Celtic. Not with the way the club is run on the tightest rein possible. As Mad Mitch said the other day,it is a financial business with a works football team. £72m cash in hand at the bank declared a year ago,and after another profitable season that can only have improved. But with direct qualification for the Champions League next season,we will be looking to make an even bigger operating profit from our guaranteed eight-game campaign. For tax purposes,it makes sense to hold back any significant outlay until then,though a possible change of government-and therefore tax regulations-makes that questionable. What is not questionable is doing so given those pesky FSR requirements. Best,surely,to get the big ticket items in during a period where FSR compliance is already guaranteed. Such as the current three-year qualifying period which expires tomorrow?

I reckon,giving the board the benefit of the doubt over this for the absolute last time,that we will see new signings coming through the door as soon as the new financial year starts on Monday. That the board are holding any action until then for the reasons above. This means that the costs of those new signings falls into the new qualifying period of uncharted waters,rather than absorbing them into the safe harbour of the current one. And that makes a difference potentially,for the next qualifying period might not be as placid for us. Who knows? CL participation is no longer guaranteed for the future,for example. And the only thing we can say for certain is that signings made this summer will now affect our FSR compliance going forward,rather than being written off by including them in the soon to be completed past. 

Watch this space-well,watch certain other outlets-tell us next summer and/or the one after,that we can’t spend on players because of the spend this summer. If you don’t believe me,think back only six years. Celtic had just completed successive trebles for the first time. We had just compiled record figures for both income and profit,and reported these to the relevant tax and football authorities,though these were not made public until September,after the window closed.  What was the reason given for our stupor in the transfer market that summer? That the club had only made £6m profit in his first term-the latest publicly declared accounts-and that any spending was therefore reckless spending of money we didn’t have. 

But we DID have it. And the board knew it. Same as we currently have considerable leeway in the books to have splashed out at any time prior to signing off the books tomorrow. But we didn’t,and when you support a team as we do with a long history of declining to build from strength,you know longer ask why. You simply try to figure out what crap excuse for this the board will throw at us this time,and at the AGM in late autumn. And which those outlets will repeat parrot fashion. Give them their dues,they can be creative when it comes to excuses about not spending. It would suit them better to be creative when it comes to getting a decent squad on the pitch,one capable of playing in European competition without embarrassing us. 


Above article by BMCUWP

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June 29, 2024 12:33 am

The Sentinel Celts Charity Drive has nominated Blood Cancer UK as the recipient for funds for the six months to 31/07/2024,and we are getting close to achieving our LATEST TARGET.

We have set up a GoFundMe page for those who have some spare cash to donate,even from a lucky windfall or finding a tenner in the street.

Click on the link for more details,including how to donate.


Please give generously to a very deserving cause. Although our first targets have now been achieved-and many thanks for your generosity!-we can always hope to do more.

June 29, 2024 12:34 am

You can read our article on a resolution for improving refereeing standards here.


Join the growing numbers of our readers who have had enough of referees In hun scarves.

June 29, 2024 1:44 am

Hi Bobby:

First class lead article, as per.

Off topic, and on a lighter note, this is quite funny.


June 29, 2024 2:38 am

Vinicius puts Brazil 1-0 up vs Paraguay with a superb goal, after Paqueta missed a penalty.

June 29, 2024 2:45 am

Brazil 2-0. Savinho. 44 minutes.

Last edited 20 days ago by INIQUITOUS IV
The Nabbla
June 29, 2024 7:33 am

‘As madmitch said’ easy there,dont risk your credibility BMCUW.

June 29, 2024 8:03 am

So far the board playbook has been the same.
We are stuck in a well rehearsed cycle.
The loyalty of Celtic fans is unsurpassed.
Which means the boards fleecing will continue.
History has proven there is always a tipping point.
The Raj will do his utmost to squeeze every penny from his cash cow as he has no emotional attachment to our club.
Our only hope is this happens sooner while we have the chance to salvage this once great club!

June 29, 2024 9:01 am


Now,now. It’s only fair to give credit where it is due,and he made a good point. Similar to the theory that Sainsbury is a land bank and property company with a retail arm.

Big Audio Dynamite
June 29, 2024 9:05 am

Lot in …


Log out.

St tams
June 29, 2024 9:36 am

Interesting article Bobby.
Personally, I think it’s more of a case of waiting until we sell MOR, before we bring new players in in .
Wouldn’t be surprised if Scott Bain is in goals for the first league game.

June 29, 2024 9:45 am


Bit early to give us the heebie-jeebies,innit? Comments like that could spoil a decent weekend for people,you know.

San Luis
June 29, 2024 10:31 am

Great article.

I’m a positive Bhoy , I genuinely think the next two weeks will see comings and goings on a regular basis.

I think, if we get this window right then it takes the pressure off coming windows, money needs to be spent and it will.

BR has proven to hold the strongest hand in recent months and he’s not been weakened in any form. Indeed, his hand has been strengthened by recent events such as winning the Double and season ticket sales….which shows faith in him , if not the PLC.

Enjoy your weekend troops. KTF.

June 29, 2024 11:17 am

Looking forward to few pints in Partick today.not been in The Smiddy or Dolphin for a wee while now.🍻

Last edited 19 days ago by Drew67
Bada Bing
June 29, 2024 11:33 am

Video: John Keane – forever regarded as one of Celtic’s saviours https://thecelticstar.com/video-john-keane-forever-regarded-as-one-of-celtics-saviours/

John Keane Celtic Legend RIP

June 29, 2024 11:50 am


Nice to have a end of month weekend following on a weekend as you say. Most of my ends of month weekends seem to fall on a Tuesday and Wednesday I find. Nobody likes a smartarse

Fortunately , the article itself is fine and thought provoking as it should be. I don’t speak Mad Mitch (MM) very fluently myself so thanks for the translation. It’s a fair point he and you have made too. I have usually just about been able to work out what Celtic’s strategies are. For example the so-called ‘Money Ball’ one probably had merit – it just was not well executed as between January 2017 and January 2021 it ended up being more ‘Fling Shit and See if It Sticks’ strategy.

But this ‘Build up the cash reserve until we need a Bigger Vault’ approach has me stumped. It is not anything to do with pending legal settlements whilst Barrowfield’s upgrade aside no capital projects seem likely to be undertaken either. Were I to meet a passing Chairman and I asked him if it might be spending some of the money on good players I woud imagine he’d laugh smugly as he shook his head. Plenty of otherwise reasonable people agree with him too- already buying into the notion that we have to sell before we can buy. I think I did understand MM suggest, tongue in cheek perhaps, the money could be used to facilitate a future reduction in ticket prices. And if that’s the case Monica Bellucci is coming to my house for her tea tonight.

Seriously building up a vast cash reserve makes no sense to me. Assuming Rangers will find new ways to f*ck it up to keep us just in front and things exciting seems an unwise one. Celtic should start of by assuming that Rangers will be better next time and plan accordingly- who knows we might even have a title race that is exciting because the contenders are properly good. The idea that we might consider clubs from bigger, richer leagues to be our rivals too might now seem ludicrous- not least by that passing Chairman- but Celtic did not always think so. Who knows if the passing Chairman had not been as timid and unambitious and had actually implemented a strategy focused on building a great team that others outside this country might think has something going for it than a passionate support might, to use a phrase I dislike, ‘grow the brand’.

And it would be nice to renew my season ticket for reasons beyond habit and duty and without a sense that those who think I and we am/are stupid to keep renewing might have quite a good point


June 29, 2024 12:08 pm


You are in the same boat as so many,and asking the same questions too. So frustrating that a football club has a clear strategy not to be the best football club that it can be. Can you think of any successful business in any sphere which has made its name by saying that it strives for mediocrity,just not to be quite as mediocre as one or two others?

Enjoy your meal tonight. I’ve got yon Stevie Nicks nipping round later for a pre-theatre swally sesh,then some fumbling in the cheap seats to follow. We can compare notes tomorrow and in two months time. I suspect your teenage daydream and mine are closer to reality than the other one about Celtic pushing the aforementioned boat out this summer.

June 29, 2024 12:35 pm

Payments made to Blood Cancer UK,our nominated charity,on behalf of those prizewinners in our Royal Ascot Naps Competition and the marathon Saturday Naps Competition who asked for that to be done.


Quite rightly,others have asked for theirs to be allocated elsewhere,which I have also done. I’ll need to make it clearer in future competitions that prize money won belongs to the winnners to do as they see fit,rather than have an unstated “moral obligation” to hand it back.

The idea behind requesting a small (and non-mandatory!) entry fee to charity in return for taking part works,as the sum raised by doing so is about three times the total prize money. Thank you all very much for that. But if people think that winning one of those prizes is meaningless as they have to hand it back,then it doesn’t work very well!

I’m open to suggestions on how we deal we this,as are TWISTY,CHALMERSBHOY and 16 ROADS,whose contributions have been immense. We want to get it right,increase the fundraising AND keep the customers happy.

Next competition will probably start in October,so give it some thought please. All suggestions welcome.

Bada Bing
June 29, 2024 1:19 pm

BMCUW- Maybe 3 or 4 shorter competitions could work better?

June 29, 2024 1:40 pm

Not many weel kent faces at Lennoxtown for first day.

Anybody recognize the 2 goalies with Bain?


June 29, 2024 1:48 pm


Good points but I don’t give much of a monkey’s for a close league.
Would love to see Celts play more youngsters in the SPL and League Cup games rather than be forced to through injuries.
Cant judge them on fifty or eighty minutes ( or ten ).
We’ve got to gear up for the CL.
Bottom after the eight games, as another poster would say, not a good look.

June 29, 2024 1:55 pm

The world according to the board — Not sure what the future holds?

SPL success and a regular significant profit / cash generation — how long will that last?

Especially if Euro form is patchy or even poor — if everybody else is growing and developing then our own stagnation and failure will eventually raise a few eyebrows in the support.

However — regular surplus …
Do we just keep booking the cash to the bank / corporation tax to the Treasury?

So if we are not going to spend it / grow the business — should we adjust our fan pricing to reflect this?

Cheaper season tickets?
Locally produced strips?
More money to the Foundation?

£25mill in the bank looked bad.
£75mill in the bank is shocking.
£125mill in the bank — civil strife towards the board?

Especially given the waste in the work we actually do.

Last edited 19 days ago by Madmitch
June 29, 2024 2:07 pm

INQ4 @ 1.40.

Good views of L/town.

My thoughts — great setting but crying out for more investment and a re-focus.

Youth academy with accommodation.
Better facilities plus an indoor pitch.
Spectator facilities.
Better access.

The old hospital building should be brought back into use.

We shouldn’t be afraid to publicise who we are and what we have done.

I do appreciate that the dregs of the Govan FC support can make it difficult but that needs highlighting not shying away from the issue.

L/town highlights our limitations.
They have one so we need one.
Box ticked — job done.
Nothing about performance / output / industry improvements and new ideas.

Our efforts — great ideas at times but always fire and forget.
Launch it but nothing about development and improvement.

Last edited 19 days ago by Madmitch
June 29, 2024 3:20 pm

Steve Naive

I am not fussed either way about it being a tight race or not but I’d prefer it if it was between 2 good teams not, as was the case recently, 2 pretty ordinary ones.

The point about youngsters is a fair one – Kelly was the only youngster given a try last year and he got what? 150 minutes spread over 6 matches.

Are our academy players actually any better or worse than most of the ‘project’ signings we make? Home matches versus teams in the lower third of the league or home cup ties versus pretty much anybody seems an ideal chance to give guys like Lawal, Vata or Kelly nowadays – there will have been plenty others in the past- a start but it’s a long time since we had a manager willing to give them chance. Which to me seems not just sad but wrong


June 29, 2024 3:37 pm

J67 @ 3.20

As a club we don’t play enough football.

No reserve league — then make one ourselves.
Olympic team / U23’s — get them games from anywhere.
Bounty to others to beat them — make it competitive.

B Team / U20’s — great idea but now a bit patchy. Some of it is process driven.

Young players / poor start seemingly this season — they mature over the season and improve would be progress of a sort even if we come about third’ish on average.

Youth age groups — recent history of failure in the SPL U18’s suggest improvement is needed.

We should organise regular competitions / festivals to raise our profile and get them playing in front of crowds.

Main thing get rid of the M/Well coaching vibe that pervades our youth set up.

June 29, 2024 3:45 pm

5 pm deadline for Superbru predictions

Still to trap

Angel Gabriel
Billy Bhoy
& Scaniel

June 29, 2024 4:37 pm

Mad Mitch

Certainly the lack of game time is a point many have raised here previously- McCaff has made the point most persuasively for as long as I’ve been lurking here.

I thought the B Team/Lowland League was worth a punt but it has not been a success from our point of view. It may even be counterproductive in truth.

Your suggestions seem quite wise but I doubt Celtic’s hierarchy would be keen on it. Money spent on football? Come on now Peter would veto that.

Until we have people at the top of the club who think maximising the potential of the team on the pitch and the youngsters at the club instead of the bank balance- apparently unwilling to countenance the idea that improving the football might actually improve the overall financial strength of the plc they are managing so dully


San Luis
June 29, 2024 5:23 pm

Tour de France, stage 1 was a good watch today , Florence to Rimini. Big climbs and some surprise winners. Spotted a lad in a Celtic top too.

Italy v Swiss on now. Not much between the teams this far.

June 29, 2024 5:40 pm

Quote unquote Peter Lawwell in 2023 accounts on salaries
This charlatan has the brass neck to spout this pish and then when we try to sign better quality he argues over their requested salary.
Unbelievable just Unbelievable. Reports whether close to the mark or way from it now stating that both the GK and Bernardo stumbling blocks are salary.

Ah they are only staff . Lets give the board 62% rise again this year and keep them happy.

16 roads
June 29, 2024 5:43 pm


June 29, 2024 12:35 pm


Michael you deserve a medal mo chara.

Any railway shunter will appreciate how difficult it is having to tally the scores, week after week.

Hard work indeed.

Can’t find the final results, think it’s Twisty, Jobo and Bada?

Congratulations to yous three, and well done to everyone who participated.

Thank you.

HH. 🍀🍺🐎

June 29, 2024 6:20 pm

No wonder LF was a revelation in Italy this season.

The Italian MF is honking.
Guys in the NT who should be handing out water.

Just not at the races — is the coach SC in disguise?

June 29, 2024 6:46 pm

Italy are playing for longer holidays.
No energy / no movement.
Turgid dross.

Bada Bing
June 29, 2024 6:50 pm

Tally manager will be sacked before he’s on the plane home

June 29, 2024 6:50 pm

Italy — They know they are not going to win it so why prolong the agony.

Guy who got the 97th minute goal against Croatia obviously never got the message.

Horrible stuff.

June 29, 2024 7:27 pm


Given that Celtic claimed at 2022 AGM to have played a part in the development of FSR I would imagine the Finance Director Chris McKay is very well placed to advise the Board on the limits Celtic will be able to spend on players in this window.

FSR states.

Cost control
For the first time, clubs are subject to a squad cost rule to apply better control over player wages and transfer costs.
The new rule limits spending on player and coach wages, transfers and agent fees to 70% of club revenue. We will roll out the new threshold progressively: 90% in the 2023/24 season and 80% in 2024/25, before applying the permanent 70% ceiling from 2025/26. Breaches will result in predefined financial penalties as well as sporting measures.

The limit in next licensing round for 24/25 will be 80% reducing to 70% in 25/26.

However players signed this summer are likely to be on the books in 25/26 so the 70% limit has to be heeded now.

This will apply to all clubs and should bring down player wages which should help Celtic attract players who could always get more elsewhere and did not sign.

That makes sense.

The problem will be if, like last season, we do not spend to our limit but to that of R2ngers because of the interdependent/ competitiveness factor I explained on previous blog then once the number crunchers identify the size of the spending gap between us and R2ngers under FSR the Board are going to have some explaining to do at AGM to justify not taking advantage of the changes FSR has introduced WITH Celtics help.

Last edited 19 days ago by Auldheid
A thing of beauty
June 29, 2024 7:53 pm

Absolute dross from Italy as others have said. England are so jammy that they will get to the final before facing any team of note.
As for Celtic, I hope we start to get busy in the market this week. Repeating the mistakes of last year will see BR walk and not one fan will have any need to question why. I think it’s just such a puzzle for us fans what we are stock piling all this money for. We’re a football club, not a bank.
Imagine getting to the start of the season with 70m plus in the bank, sun standard players on the park and no hot water in the toilets. It would just be the same as last season 😂😂

June 29, 2024 8:05 pm


If FSR which is a form of wage cap works as intended then if Celtic were to spend up to their FSR limits then in theory they should get more bang per buck from the cash excess accumulated.

San Luis
June 29, 2024 8:08 pm

Good decision on that Germany goal. Players need to realise that blocking is a foul. As is pushing the keeper.

A thing of beauty
June 29, 2024 8:14 pm

There is a flaw in your logic. You state “if Celtic spend up to their FSR limit.” That will never happen. We are stuck with Lawwellnomics until DD decides otherwise. That is as Jimbo67 said earlier – throw as much shite at the wall and see what sticks. You only need one success story in 10. If the other nine are shit, no matter. Been going on since the Huns died, maybe even before.

A thing of beauty
June 29, 2024 8:15 pm

Oh and I forgot to add that 70% of the supporter base will laud you as a genius because we haven’t gone bust like the Huns.

June 29, 2024 8:17 pm

The tale from Ibrox as I hear it! 

Rangers did not inform any of their commercial partners that there would be a delay in opening Ibrox next season. 

Caterers, sponsors, advertisers and third party contractors learned via social media – or at least some of them did. 

Rangers have signed Liam Lelly to be their No 1 goalkeeper – and it was on that basis that Kelly signed. 

Butland is to be sold as they need the transfer fee and are already spending it. 

Re the Chinese Steel it should have arrived but needs to be certified. Remember that Glasgow City Council ordered Chinese Steel for the squinty bridge and when it arrived it was not of the correct grade and so was useless. Do not take it for granted that the steel concerned will or will not fit the bill. 

Rangers will be on the hook for contractual damages due to:

1 Building Contractors already on site. 
2 Catering Concessions expecting home games in August and potentially September. 
3. Stadium sponsors and advertisers who booked promotions for Ibrox. 
4. ⁠Any Corporate Entertaining booked for Ibrox during games missed. 

NB sone of this might be capable of movement to Murrayfield but it is subject to agreement and potential price adjustment. 

Murrayfield will cost and is not equipped with VAR technology which will have to be installed and paid for. 

If Asbestos has been disturbed a regulated Asbestos removal firm will be required as will a suitable asbestos removal plan before the planned work can be commenced or restarted in earnest. 

A shit show with many potential financial consequences. None of them are fatal but when you are already skint your budget is stretched even more and savings have to come from somewhere. 


Celtic will not make any signings until 1st July or afterwards for accounting reasons. 

Any deals already done will not be announced till then and will be dated on that date or after. 

Last edited 19 days ago by Gordon64
June 29, 2024 8:24 pm

Why TV viewers are subjected to a vacuous bigot who couldn’t manage a junior level team is beyond me 🙉

June 29, 2024 8:38 pm

European Championship Winners
Soviet Union
Spain x 3
Italy x 2
West Germany x 2

No wee countries 🤔

June 29, 2024 8:41 pm

WTF Game suspended due to adverse weather conditions 🤔 FFS Its Rain !

A thing of beauty
June 29, 2024 8:41 pm

All sounds perfectly plausible. I personally think it’s way too quiet to just be the steel.

16 roads
June 29, 2024 8:46 pm

The geoengineering/weather modification programs are causing absolute carnage.

June 29, 2024 9:18 pm

Evening all.
No Celtic, no interest.
Just an observation on strikers.
Manchester City = Erling Haaland
Manchester Utd = Rasmus Højlund
Reminds me of.
Glasgow Celtic = Charlie Nicholas.
Glasgow Rangers (original) = Andy Kennedy.
Just a thought.

The Nabbla
June 29, 2024 9:29 pm

The geoengineering/weather modification programs are causing absolute carnage.

Gigglin here 16Roads,used to be called good ol thunder and lightnin back in,ma fol ma would be runnin roon hoos sprinklin the holy water

Mon the danes,mon the germans

Great when its no Celtic


June 29, 2024 9:31 pm


There is no flaw in a logic that begins with “if.”

It means if the condition ie spending to limit is not met then there will be questions to answer.

However if it does happen it suggests Celtic have been ahead of the game since 2022 when they were involved in the development of FSR.

I appreciate past experience influences current thinking but Celtic oft complained or explained they had been priced out of the quality player market.

FSR is an UEFA club wide attempt to reduce the wage demands players can make under Cost Control and it would be hard to explain a lack of spend now when wages are being brought under control.

It’s a bit like not spending on a new TV in December when you know you can get it cheaper in the sales.

My point is that FSR changes the way clubs have operated financially for years and that once the impact manifests itself it will require us supporters to rethink our views of the past.

If you look back at the main factor affecting Celtic’s spend it is player wage inflation and Celtic were right to get involved to try to bring it under control.

Sol Kitts
June 29, 2024 9:31 pm

Denmark score

Sol Kitts
June 29, 2024 9:32 pm

Offside, goal disallowed