We’ll tell you who at the end…
Goalkeeper Craig Gordon repaid the faith Celtic put in him a few years ago by penning a new contract which will keep him at the club until 2020, which is about halfway through Eastenders.
“I’m delighted to get the deal sorted. We’ve got a big end to the season coming up so I can put all that behind me and fully focus on finishing the season well.
“There were a few things to talk about but not a great deal. It was always going to happen, it was just a matter of time. The club never accepted any bids. Until that happened there was no chance of anything happening.
“It was just up to me to keep playing away and to the best of my ability, and I was happy to keep playing and doing my job. I never got to the point where I had a decision to make so it was just a case of getting on with my football and I’m concentrating fully on Celtic.”
“I want to play as long as I possibly can, I’m very hopeful this isn’t my last contract. I want to play at the highest level for as long as possible. If that’s beyond this contract, and I’m hopeful that it will be, then we’ll see what happens.
“I hope my best years can be ahead. I’m happy and I’m enjoying my football. It’s a great place to be and a great team to be involved in. I’m hopeful I can have quite a few more years yet where I’m playing at this level.”
There was a point when Dorus de Vries arrived that some of us thought the Scots days were numbered, but as soon as we saw de Vries play it was more or less certain we’d stick with Gordon. So much so, in fact, that Leo Fasan risked a loan with Port Vale rather than have his confidence shattered by being told he was further down the pecking order than “Whoops ” de Vries.
There’s a couple of others who are out of contract in the summer, and to be honest, it may be that none of them get a deal…
|Player(s)||born/age||Nat.||End of contract||Contract option||Market value|
|Feb 5, 1997 (20)||31.05.2017||–||£4.25m|
|Aug 30, 1983 (33)||31.05.2017||–||£1.70m|
|May 10, 1986 (30)||31.05.2017||–||£1.70m|
|Mar 19, 1981 (35)||31.05.2017||–||£1.49m|
|Mar 10, 1996 (20)||31.05.2017||–||£43k|
Roberts is on loan, and a lot will depend on whether or not that valuation above is realistic, as lets be honest, he won’t feature for Manchester City, in the same way that Jason Denaayer didn’t.
But will he want to stay at Celtic, where let’s be honest, he isn’t guaranteed a start either ?
Commons is still here, which might surprise you, and he will be away, as will Efe Ambrose, who didn’t make the list, and while Kolo Toure may step up to coaching, the promise of a deal for the likeable and capable Emilio Izaguirre hasn’t materialised yet.
Which means it probably won’t.
The man on the right in this picture is Lee Congerton, who may well be the new head of recruitment at Celtic from next week.
Hang on… I’ve seen him before somewhere…
Of course, it’s not Ronny Deila really, before one or two start panicking.. its a guy who has worked with Rodgers before, at chelsea, so thats alright then.
The Mail claims that Paul Mitchell, the Tottenham scout linked with “rangers ” was also in the frame, but theres no way we could compete with whatever package was on offer at Ibrox. We believe the package on offer over there will remain secret until someone can get the brown paper and string off it.
Any doubts anyone has about a long term strategy under rodgers should be eased by this news.
We’re going places, it’s just a matter of how quickly.
We’re not actually that bad at the moment, when you think about it. some critics, usually poor ones, will claim that Scottish football is piss poor and Celtic are the best of a bad bunch, but lets take that into a wider context.
This week in the Champions League knock out stages, Arsenal lost to Bayern Munich 5-1 in London, after losing 5-1 in Munich in the first leg.
Talkshite Radio haven’t done their “Arsenal need to get out of the EPL ” debate yet, nor have they questioned the in depth quality of that league.
Barcelona took six off Paris St Germain to overturn a four goal deficit from the first leg, and yet again, we don;t see any criticism of the French league, nor have the Evening Times done an article about how clubs such as Arsenal and PSG, clearly out of their depth at that level, should form their own English channel superleague , and refuse all invites to take part in the UCL.
Could this theme have merely been a stick to beat Celtic and Scottish football with ?
Or do the EPL and the French League need a strong “rangers ” as well ?
An inexperienced Celtic didn;t peform consistently well enough in the UCL this year, but the other sides in the group were a cut above average, as their most recent results in this years competitions show…
Fiorentina 2, Borussia Moenchengladbach 4
Manchester City 5, Monaco 3
Barcelona 6, Paris St Germain 1
Incidentally, all of these games saw the winners come from behind in spectacular fashion to win.
The problem is that Scottish football is constantly compared with English football, notably by the English, as they feel that its only right to place a country with ten times the population of its neighbour on a level playing field when it comes to comparing the leagues.
England has 89 towns with a larger population than 100 000.
Scotland has 4.
It cannot even approach the in depth strength of the English league, and as we know, cannot attract the finance of the larger market.
But hey-that doesn’t matter to Talkshite et al.
All the likes of Adrian Durham and Jason Cundy-I resisted the temptation to use onomatapoeia when spelling the latters name, which would have taken a very slight alteration- can see is a large fanbase which rises to the bait every time they open their mouths on air to rubbish the clubs-and the game -north of the border.
A deflection from their own leagues failings, which include a dearth of English talent and a widening gulf between the fans and their clubs.
Scottish football may have its faults, and there’s certainly room for improvement, but where else in the world can you see an achievement that no other club will ever match…
Chris Sutton, who left the English league to play in Scotland, has assumed the mantle of public protector for our game, and it appears that the Talkshite crew don’t fancy a debate..
It all started when Sutton tweeted…
.@btsportfootball Blimey if a Scottish team had lost and humiliated 10-2 we would be hearing how bad the standard of the league is....
Which prompted Adrian Durham to respond…
“There’s so much wrong with Chris Sutton’s tweet. Let’s put him right. Celtic are by far the best team Scotland can offer.
“Judging the league by Celtic’s performances is kind of misleading. Celtic are in their best moment in years and have a manager they all think is a genius as Liverpool fans did for a short while.
“So when Celtic lose 7-0 in Barcelona you wonder about the state of the league. Jeez, what would happen to Hamilton? So now Arsenal are in a terrible run of form, a manager the fans were protesting about before the game, crowds are the lowest for years, they aren’t the best England have to offer and recently lost at home to Watford.
“It’s no surprise they got battered, especially after their captain got sent off. Imagine the score if Scott Brown got sent off in Barcelona. Are Arsenal, in the state they’re in, representative of what the Premier League can offer? Of course not and everyone realises it apart from Chris Sutton.
“Celtic are the best Scotland can offer and lost 1-0 to the Lincoln Red Imps of Gibraltar. Sutton has forgotten that after all the hidings dished out to Motherwell and Ross County.
“What Sutton is forgetting is that the fourth best team in England last season got to the semi finals of the Champions League last year. He’s also forgetting that a team fighting relegation – Leicester City – got further than Celtic this season and that Manchester City are still in the Champions League.
“It’s a short hit to win fans, to get Celtic fans behind him. Real analysis takes a bit more than a tweet. I would’t go on individual games because anything can happen over 90 minutes but if you think Celtic drawing twice with Manchester City proves they are as good as City then you go with that.
“Does it prove Celtic are as good as Inverness because they drew with them? Does it prove losing at home to a mid-table Bundesliga side Gladbach means they’re as good as them? Or losing in Gibraltar means they’re worse than Red Imps?
“If Arsenal were ripping up the Premier League and Arsene Wenger was top dog and all was well at the Emirates then Sutton would have a point but he’s failed to do his homework so his argument is laughable but it will make a lot of Scottish people happy.
“He was saying the Scottish Premiership was on a par with the English Premier League based on Arsenal’s result with Bayern Munich – let that sink in before you laugh your head off.
“Not only is it wrong but it deludes idiots into thinking there is no problem with Scottish football. From the bottom to the top there are massive issues. I suggest time should be sent on those rather than trying to win points from Celtic fans.”
This was actually billed on the radio as Durham “taking on ” Sutton, and implied a debate, which it would have been had Sutton been allowed to defend his corner. Which he would have done better than Blackburn defended a corner against him back in the day, when it was men against boys…except durham hasn’t got any dangly bits between his legs, so he just had that rant and then sat back hoping for a reaction.
and here is Chris Suttons..
“Adrian has a vivid imagination. He has history of rants and sometimes they are factual but he clearly took it upon himself to misrepresent my tweet.
“He said there was so much wrong with my tweet! This is a guy who is sticking up for his mate Jason Cundy after Brendan Rodgers dressed him down for his ridiculous comment last week!
“This is a guy who said there was so much wrong and ridiculous with my tweet but then said Arsenal aren’t representative of the Premier League… Erm which league do they represent then?
“This is a guy with a grudge against Scottish football who said a few weeks ago Scottish football had lost its mind!
“Everybody north of the border knows that the game isn’t perfect and that there are so many things that need improving.
“It’s purely finance which is the difference and it’s true to say that English clubs in recent seasons with all the money at their disposal have underperformed in Europe.
“That’s the truth and we keep hearing how strong the EPL is. Durham likes nothing better than bashing Scottish football and you only have to look at his comments regarding Brendan Rodgers and Moussa Dembele.
“It was promoted as Adrian taking on Chris Sutton. Just for the record it’s easy reading off a script and taking someone on when they aren’t actually there to defend themselves.
“Funny thing is Talksport have my number! But he’s entitled to his opinion. Absolutely entitled but I’d maybe rethink the Mark Warbuton for England manager one.
“And that Mark Warburton has been building his excellent reputation at Rangers.
“The only accurate thing I’ve seen Adrian say of late is that Mark Warburton has transformed Rangers. Yes Adrian he certainly has….”
Which is effectively the same as mine, but with more words.
Football, fortunately, is about much more than money and tv coverage. Its about atmosphere and enjoyment.
Like at the Manchester city game last night, in the EPL..
“rangers ” visit Celtic Park on sunday. Though I’d better mention it, as they seem to be hogging the headlines.
They haven’t got a manager yet, but they might get one this week. They’re not bothering with a Director of Football, because they can’t find one stupid enough to believe its a job worth having, and the day of reckoning is getting closer…
Oh , by the way…they’ve had someone in to look at the roof….
With talk of Celtic players being bullied, and perhaps the referee being a little more enthusuastic for one team than would normally be regarded as fair, Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers has drafted in an emergency loannee to stiffen the sides resolve…and he seems somewhat keen on the idea..
Yesterdays winner, by a country mile…