Happy Birthday to me, a grand old 54 today.
If I’d known I was going to live this long, I’d probably have taken a little bit more care of myself.
However, that means I’m in a race to get to 55 before that lot do, and given the healthy 54-0 lead , with just twelve months to go, one could safely say it’s a possibility.
Looks like Scott Sinclair isn’t going to hang around for that, though. Although Lennon fancies him as a player, the guys who write the cheques are determined to lower the wage bill, and the highly paid Sinclair is too proud to just sit back and take the money.
Will it allow for Victor Wanyama to return ?
That kind of depends on how the old heated driveway holds up in the bad weather.
Or, as we noted earlier in the week, is that position going to David Turnbull ?
Given that Wanyama’s wage will be considerably more than Celtic like to pay-or would be willing to pay for a loannee, that seems likely.
Meanwhile, Turnbull has been told not to do any sprinting, heavy lifting and if someone near him coughs, he’s to take a lemsip immediately and go to bed.
If he remains healthy until January, that’s one less thing for new Director of Operations Nick Hammond to worry about.
One name that won’t be on his list is Jack Harper, the Scot who plays in Spain at Getafe.
But at the moment he’s on loan at Alcorcon. (google them, I had to )
Whilst the newspapers declare he hasn’t ruled out a move to Scotland, from what he says it’s fairly certain he hasn;t ruled it in wither. In fact, it sounds like he hadn’t even considered it until he was asked.
“People in Spain don’t know how important both teams in Glasgow are.
“Both Celtic and Rangers are mythical clubs – 60,000 fans go to the games.
“My parents are Rangers fans, I am a little more neutral. I like to watch the derbies for the passion and intensity but I do not choose a side.
“They had problems, went down to the fourth tier and Celtic won eight leagues in a row. Now with Steven Gerrard, everything is going better.
“The league is becoming more powerful. I don’t think about it now. I have 12 years left in my career and anything can happen.
“In general the Scottish Premiership is beautiful, it has mythical teams.”
He’s just being polite, it’s clear he has no interest in coming to Scotland, and even less interest in the game here.
Hammond will also have to start looking for a couple of strikers. Whilst Edoaurd will probably be here for 9, he’s unlikely to be around for 10, especially if that heated driveway fails.
According to the Record, five clubs are already “circling “, which means that they had to stop counting as their hacks get all mixed up if they have to use two hands…
Scottish referees will not be officiating at the upcoming European championships, officially down to their inexperience of using VAR, the action replay video system that would, if introduced in Scotland, expose the real reason they aren’t going to the tournament, amd they won;t get any champions League games either.
For Scottish football, it’s another kick in the teeth as it’s reputation sinks even lower.
Then again, since the debacle of 2012 and the Rangers scandal, the beaks have kind of had it coming to them.
(The sun )
SCOTLAND’S top refs are set to be snubbed for major European and international games because we don’t have VAR.
It has been revealed that leading officials Willie Collum and Bobby Madden will be excluded from major Champions League and Europa League matches.
SPFL chief Neil Doncaster has claimed Scotland will struggle to adopt VAR because of the cost involved and the lack of officials.
But former Fifa referee Charlie Richmond fears Scotland is becoming a backwater and must catch up with the rest of Europe.
The top flights in England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain are all using VAR this season.
There are also versions being used in Belgium, Holland, Portugal, Turkey, Greece, Switzerland, Poland and the Czech Republic.
Richmond said: “If we don’t get in line and start using the VAR system in Scotland, you won’t see our guys going abroad.
“That was evident when Bobby Madden went to do his Champions League match recently between Bayern Munich and Red Star Belgrade
“The VAR officials were flown in from Holland because it’s only Bobby and Willie Collum that are trained in VAR.
Collum, of course, doesn’t need VAR anyway, he’s got eyes in the back of his head.
“It was the same when Willie covered Juventus against Bayer Leverkusen. The VAR officials came from Spain.
“We can’t send a full team of six Scottish officials to a Champions League game.
“So when it comes to the more important games our referees will miss out because Uefa will insist on a full team of six who work together.
“The Europa League brings in VAR from the last 32 onwards and I can’t see our guys getting matches.
“It’s the funding aspect. How are we going to pay for it?
“But you don’t need to go all singing, all dancing.
“Our major matches are covered live by the main television stations, so all you would need to do is put a couple of VAR officials in place in a van at the stadium.
“We should trial it at games like the Betfred Cup semi-finals and final and the Scottish Cup semi-finals and final, for example.
“Then we would see how it works and take it from there.”
Everyone else in the world will be using it, but a Scottish referee-former referee-Charlie Richmond thinks its worth the SFA trialing it…that’s the mindset we’re dealing with.
As for funding, if the SFA had acted positively when the whiff of scandal first pervaded Ibrox, and dealt with it accordingly, then they may have found sponsorship and investment that is now no longer possible due to the cold shoulder.
Seriously, even if legally possible, and that’s debatable, quite simply, no one wants their name associated with such a toxic name such as King.
It’s not worth the risk, and it may even be wise for Celtic to reconsider their contract with Parks of Hamilton, who by association, are tainted by the toxic brand.
Scottish referees don’t want VAR -introducing it here would make the games about an hour longer as inept refereeing would lead to virtually every decision being replayed, and thus showing them up for what they are, which is bloody useless.
They will have to accept that their days of touring Europe and the world are over.
Karamoke Dembele, it seems , will choose to play for England rather than Scotland, a decision he’s expected to make soon, according to the press.
There’s little actual evidence he’s actually going to make this decision, and one wonders of it’s being made to ensure he gets the McGeady treatment from fans if he chooses to pursue an international career with England.
Although the confusion amongst the Ibrox support will be interesting to note, as that lot are usually quite happy to support their colonial masters.
Yesterday, we looked at this picture..