Partick v. Celtic Match Preview-Or Should We Boycott ?

Yokerbhoy looks ahead to the return of football, but also asks a pertinent question…

IS THIS THE BEST TIME TO BOYCOTT THE SCOTTISH CUP?

Foreword

With all the shit that’s been going down lately such as the Ryan Christie ban or the completely false accusations of racial abuse aimed at the Celtic support as a deflective measure to protect that unsavoury wee fellow Morelos from punishment for his revolting throat-slitting gesture, I was in two minds as to whether to post this Scottish Cup tie preview or not, bearing in mind that there is, quite understandably, a strong current of feeling among our supporters geared towards pulling out of this SFA competition.

For me at least, one of the greatest attractions of cup competitions in any part of the world is the opportunity that they provide for modest wee teams to live a dream and compete against the big guns as it helps them to survive and embraces a moment of magic for those faithful small bands of fans (for whom I have the utmost respect), from small children right through to senior citizens, which will probably remain in their memories for the rest of their lives.

Although we Celtic fans wish to see our team win every single match that we compete in, this particular edition of the Scottish Cup will take on far less importance than in previous seasons as the lion’s share of our efforts must be focussed on winning the league. Possible European success would be a tremendous bonus but the Premiership has to be the clear priority.

In view of the fact that Lawell and the board have done precious little or nothing in recent years to defend the dignity of our club and show at least a sliver of solidarity towards the demands and concerns of the fans, I cannot honestly see our club pulling out of this competition to manifest its non-conformity with the ever-increasing corruption, lies and cheating on the part of the SFA, the SPFL and the MSM.

After some serious soul-searching, my own personal viewpoint on the matter is that I’d like to see our bhoys participate in the cup (albeit with weakened teams, giving youth a chance and resting key players) but I’d also like to see  a complete fan boycott at Hampden (which would have far more impact than a boycott during the early stages and would also allow more time for adequate preparation) if and when we get to the semi-final and final of the competition as this would deliver a significant blow to both a complicit Celtic board and a corrupt SFA, a scenario which might just open their eyes a little.

It would also be an unprecedented gesture that would make sports media and football authorities all around Europe sit up and take notice. Such a move would obviously require some terrific organisation as well as a huge effort and a clear message would have to be transmitted to the general public inside and outside Scotland as to why such a decision has been taken.

I just hope a way can be found to convince our masses of supporters to give their full backing for this kind of measure. Patience has a limit, things are continually going from bad to worse so I think that it’s time for a massive response to help bring about change.

With that out of the way, I’ll proceed to the regular match preview, quite a detailed one this time as I’ve had a fair amount of time to check out how the Partick men have been shaping up during the latest part of their Championship campaign.


 

The second half of the season kicks off for us with a splutter rather than a bang as we renew our quest for the quadruple treble by facing our old pals from the north of Glasgow in a cup competition for the second time this season.

Perhaps I’d have prefered to write about a tie against a minnow team from League 1 or 2, or even a non-league side just for the sheer novelty fun value but at least Thistle have been anything but boring so far this season. The Maryhill Magyars have managed to keep an impressive record intact from the very beginning of this term: they’ve conceded at least a goal in every single competitive game they’ve played.

In all fairness though, if compared to what they were like when we gave them a battering in the League Cup at CP a few months ago, their defence has improved a fair amount since then.

They were going through a particularly sticky time back then, of course, as they were rooted at the bottom of the league and had no choice other than to oust their then manager Gary Caldwell, whose short reign at Firhill was nothing short of calamitous. Ian McCall, who recently made good use of his managerial gravitas and tactical nous to work wonders for Ayr Utd in a very short period of time, as well as having had a successful 4 year spell as Thistle manager from 2007 to 2011, seems to be gradually turning things around by initially ringing a few changes and altering the formation as well as patterns of play to help consolidate the defence and improve creativity in the middle of the field.

McCall has breathed fresh confidence into a few individuals who were underperforming at the time he took over but the financial limitations ever present in clubs like this severely hinder any prospects of rapid improvement in player quality over a short space of time.

The intensity of competition as well as the unpredictable nature of most games in the Championship this season is extremely high, with very few points separating the sides at the bottom from the 4th position (i.e. the minimum requirement to make the play-offs) so anything can happen, which must produce quite a few thrills for the diehard supporters of the clubs involved.

The only given would be Dundee Utd being crowned champions and enjoying their long overdue direct return to the top flight to which they’re bound to make a fine addition.

On current form the Jags are a bit stronger at the back, leaking a lot less goals than before and especially looking more solid in the centre of defence. Their midfield has a fair amount of creativity and thrust going forward but falls spectacularly short in bite, grit and pace; they are sorely missing the presence of a natural defensive midfielder or ballwinner.

The recent performance levels shown by their frontmen has been patchy at best, with a substantial quota of their goals scored coming from midfielders. To go into a bit more detail on this, I’ll just run you through the present team. There are no world-beaters in this squad obviously but praise will be given where it is due, within the context of the level that the club is competing in at the moment.

Although he had been suffering from a severe dip in form when he played against us recently in the League Cup, goalkeeper Scott Fox has come on leaps and bounds since then, instilling confidence in his defenders and pulling off quite a number of fabulous saves.

In the right back position Ryan Williamson has been a notoriously poor performer this campaign. Curiously enough, the ex-Pars defender is comfortable enough on the ball and is in fact one of the most adept in the Championship at delivering dangerous balls into the box but his defensive qualities are glaringly weak. He stands off opposing wingers who are in possession, allowing them acres of space and his positional sense is poor. His limited ability to put in a decent tackle coupled with his general dithering and dallying when under pressure have cost the Maryhill outfit quite a few goals in the past months.

Conversely, 21 year-old left back James Penrice (a product of the Thistle youth academy and definitely one to watch for the future), is notably progressing in the first team and looks very useful in all departments. We have to be aware of O’Ware, mainly due to his height, strength and heading ability. The big CB has been renowned for his unpredictable form from game to game but it looks like he’s started to settle and even forge a fairly dependable partnership in the centre of defence with ex-Motherwell player Steven Saunders, who has been their most consistent player along with Penrice in recent matches.

Moving to midfield, the Jags are seriously missing an effective DM.

McCall has experimented by deploying O’Ware, who is too slow and cumbersome for that role as well as Stuart Bannigan, who is a creative midfielder but not the type of clean tackler required to break up play and regain possession. Mystifyingly, he’s even opted to go with veteran Joe Cardle, who is at best a bang average wide player, but the Englishman is completely lost playing in a defensive midfield role.

This will clearly be one of the manager’s main priorities during the transfer window with the possible signing of Ayr Utd captain Ross Docherty being a decent solution.

On the plus side, great club servant Stuart Bannigan, who seems to have finally got over a long-term injury, has started to re-produce some of his old form. He was a highly promising youngster who was set to move to Aberdeen when suddenly tragedy struck, resulting in him being sidelined for the best part of two years with what was a career threatening knee injury but Thistle stood by him.  A quick-thinking, incisive passer of the ball who likes to dictate play and also has an eye for goal, ‘Banzo’ is to Partick what Dani Parejo is to Valencia.

To complement his play, 21 year-old Brentford loanee Reece Cole has been hugely effective bombing forward to support the attack. He has a fine first touch and a remarkable ability to find and use space both on and off the ball. He’s also blessed with an innate talent for shooting from long range and has blasted in a few spectacular goals so McCall will do everything in his power to keep him until the end of the season at the very least.

Talking of loanees, Thistle suffered a blow when young English prospect Osman Kakay was recalled to his parent club QPR. He had started to come onto a good game down that right hand side offering badly needed cover for the mistake-ridden Williamson and linking up play very well with the forwards.

Who will fill this position? Craig Slater has filled that gap for the moment but he’s an inconsistent player, who really contributes nothing special to the overall output and whose passing is frequently wayward.

Thistle will provide enthusiastic opposition but have serious defensive issues down their right flank while their midfield is as soft as brie. They shouldn’t pose too much of a goal threat either. Brand new signing Darian MacKinnon was the captain of Hamilton not too long ago but has just been released and will be with the Jags until the end of the season.

The 34 year-old veteran does have the reputation of being something of a midfield warrior but (if selected) I’m pretty sure Broonie would sort him out with ease. Oddly enough, MacKinnon will continue to coach the Hamilton Accies youth team whilst playing part-time for Partick Thistle.

Up front they have Kenny Miller, who is no stranger to us.

What has the 40 year-old desperado been up to lately?

He’s still an old fox in the box that started the campaign pretty well but his goals seemed to have dried up (two in the last fourteen games) and he’s also been increasingly guilty of drifting out of his natural position to play in a much deeper role. Could the recent change in management have adversely affected his contributions?

He’s definitely become a fly in the Thistle ointment, frequently throwing a spanner in the works by creating imbalance in the side, trying to dictate the midfield and often even retreating as far back as the bye line to pick up the ball from the goalie and subsequently try to create a build-up from the back.

The trouble is he neither has the vision, nor the awareness nor the passing ability to re-invent himself as some sort of new super sweeper skipper and it feels almost like being a man down when he ‘does his own thing’ sitting deep so the fans (and I’m sure his team mates also) are becoming pretty restless and, to be realistic, the clean-shaven Kenny seems unlikely to continue his adventure at Firhill next season.

Indeed he looks like he’s about to burst into tears every time he gets subsitituted.

Alongside, Alex Jones does score the odd goal but is lacking in confidence, his finishing ability has been erratic to say the least and he appears to be rather lightweight when it comes to any kind of physical jousts with defenders.

In the last few matches the Harry Wraggs have used the same guys in their substitutions.

Gary Harkins was a popular figure for Thistle in the past and is currently enjoying (not sure if that would be the right word) his second spell at Firhill. Now aged 34, the seasoned pro has featured in no fewer than 13 different clubs north and south of the border, having had no fewer than 3 different spells at Dundee. The story goes that unbeknownst to him, the bulky forward played for about 4 years (at both Thistle and Dundee) with a broken ankle, precisely at the time when he was playing his best ever football!

These days, however, his inclusions have often had a negative effect on the rest of the side as he is rather ungainly and slow.

Another frequently used sub and occasional starter is young Canadian Dario Zanatta, who can play on either wing or as a main striker. He can look brilliant in flashes but is just as likely to strew wild passes all over the shop and can sometimes even raise a giggle or two with some of his eccentric efforts in front of goal.

Everything that I have previewed above was written before Thistle’s last league game, a crushing four-one home defeat at the hands of runaway leaders Dundee Utd. Strangely enough, the Maryhill mob dominated the first half hour of play and should have been a couple of goals to the good but some sloppy defending led to a couple of United goals late in the second half which knocked the stuffing right out of the home side.

Some desperate and wierd changes to the formation, including a shift from LB to midfield for Penrice (a role he had never played before and where he looked completely lost) along with a further slump to new depths in overall play (especially in the defence) led to a miserable afternoon for the Firhill faithful in a game that was played in atrocious weather conditions.

For the record, the on-fire Lawrence Shankland scored a Moussa Dembele style hat trick (i.e. a goal with each foot plus a header) while Miller supplied the Jags with their consolation in the dying moments (he has quite a knack for nicking a wee goal when his side are already 4-0 down).

At least from the home side’s point of view, not too much should be read into this disaster as Dundee Utd are in a class of their own in this league and the entire PT team had a complete off day. Although this defeat keeps them very much in the danger zone, their form over the last six games or so suggests substantial overall improvement and there must be at least a glimmer of hope that they’ll gradually haul themselves up the table during the second half of the season.

Barring last minute new signings, this will be their probable team selection against us on Saturday evening:

Fox

Williamson Saunders O’Ware Penrice

Cardle (or MacKinnon) Bannigan Cole Zanatta

Miller

Jones

 

——————————————————————————————————-

 

Referring back to my introduction, my own feeling is that for more than one reason the Scottish Cup should take on less importance than usual this season but at least it could be beneficial to some of our budding young starlets and fringe players who have something to prove. Lenny will probably take quite a serious approach to the game and field a pretty strong team, which probably won’t even remotely resemble the one that I’ll be putting up here.

Hear me out..

Certain players won’t be available through suspension and injury such as Christie, Rogic, Elhamed, Simunovic, Johnston and Elyounoussi while others such as Lee O’Connor and Bayo could well be going out on loan very soon.

Potential therefore for a few who haven’t made an appearance for a while being selected.

I hope the gaffer gives youth a chance for this one (congrats to our young guns for winning against Chelsea’s u23s in London, by the way) and that we can get at least a glimpse of new bhoy Pat Klimala in action. The acquisition of Ivorian DM Soro (was that no a David Bowie song?) is practically over the line at the time of writing (it would be nice if he could outshine his fellow countryman Kouassi) but won’t be ready to face Thistle while I wouldn’t be too surprised if missing man Danny Arzani (remember him?) were to be involved in some way.

I don’t see much sense in risking injury to several of our top players for this one.

Even with a significantly weakened team, we should win comfortably on Saturday.

Celtic possible potential laden line-up

Hazard

Frimpong Bitton Deas Taylor

Shved Brown Robertson Afolabi

Griffiths Klimala

 

Subs: Gordon, O’Connor, Hayes, Ajer, McGregor, Dembele, Oko-flex (or Arzani)

 

Prediction: Plastic Whistle 0 Celtic 4 (Griffiths (2), Klimala (2))

 

and finally…

FUCK THE SFA!

0 0 vote
Article Rating
44 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Mike
8 months ago

Yoker a detailed piece that deserves every accolade. Truth be told its getting harder to focus on the team because of how our great club is being treated. I have followed Celtic since the 1960-1 Scottish Cup final, when big Jock was the manager of the Pars, but I have never felt so disillusioned. Imagine going for title number 9 and feeling like this. Not that long ago we felt like we were on top of the World but now? We have lost our voice against the corruption and the many injustices perpetrated by our governing bodies and our custodians say nothing. I can but conclude that they are silent because of their complicity. For years I have never gone to Hampden and never went to south of the river, this year I have given up my season ticket, there is not much left except my shares, which I will never sell. Memories far too many to mention will be my comfort and of course talking sh!te on E-Tims. I hope that 2020 gives you everything you wish for, “Mon the Betis, the real Betis” and of course the real Celtic.

The Silver Fhox
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike

I have to agree Mike and your experience mirrors my own, except I still have my season ticket. However, the corruption and the possibility of complicity from our board have forced me into thinking of giving up my season book at the end of this year. Money is the only thing they worship and understand. So I might remove my contribution. Disillusionment is not a strong enough word.

Mike
8 months ago

Its difficult to get your head around it, the possibility that there is an enemy within, it feels like a betrayal. I keep my fingers crossed every day that somehow they will expose the truth of it all, but that is my optimistic side coming out and I fear that it will take a fan led group to do the exposing, how sad is that?

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike

Hope you’re in excellent health Mike and many thanks for the kind words. You’ve really put it in a nutshell: we’ve done well in Europe, already have a trophy in the bag, very much in contention to win 9IAR and yet there is this hollow, empty feeling that seems to be steadily seeping into all of us. The poor performance and result against the huns was a hard enough pill to swallow in itself without the powers that be having to add insult to injury with their incomprehensible post-match decisions. I’d like to think that a swing in fortunes with a string of good results in the following months to the detriment of the huns would put things right and help to kill of the gloom but it goes far deeper than that. Fighting the good fight and not allowing ourselves to be shat on is starting to take on more importance than what our team does on the field of play. The optimist in me insists that change will finally come through sheer persistence and hopefully unbiased external legal arbitration; I just hope it comes about sooner rather than later and we all live to see it.
On a side note, Barça have just contracted a new manager, Quique Setien, who had a fair bit of success as the Betis gaffer a couple of years ago. He is an advocate of the beautiful game, i.e. stylish passing and attacking football so I’m interested to see how that one pans out over the rest of the season.
Hope all’s well on the farm and that your boy is still racking up the trophies at the gowf.
Take care Mikey Bhoy!
COYBIG

Mike
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

I need to take the ice bucket challenge to rouse myself out of this stupor. Its just a build up of negativity. I was never like that before, it feels like a drip, drip of injustice seeping into your soul, you see and feed of the mince that accompanies Scottish football. You know that its coming, you know what it means and it makes you very angry. Its blatant, its in your face, it was always on the pitch. Their demise, then the 2011-2 licence, the LNS doctored inquiry, the 5 Way agreement in all its 6 versions that throws all the rules into Skinto’s favour, the continuity myth, the BBC. with its EBT presenter coverage, the MSSM with its blatant Level 5 lies. And then the bit that’s even harder to take, your own clubs custodians involvement. Think about that, the club that was started by Brother Walfrid for that most noble of reasons. Betrayal and breath.

por cierto
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike

Snap, Mike, my first game was also the 1961 Final!

Mike
8 months ago
Reply to  por cierto

If only we had won mate, do you still remember the excitement of big Jock coming? I remember it like it was just yesterday. What magical memories.

Rebus67
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike

Mike,

You mirror my feelings exactly. Even your intro to tge club is the same as my own.

I wonder if the club is aware of the gathering disillusion?

Rebus

Mike
8 months ago
Reply to  Rebus67

Rebus,
Surely they must be aware of it, but will they act on it? I do not think that they will, they will do as they usually do, just ignore it, until they need us on their side.
I would guess that they might make a significant signing something to calm the natives and deliver 9. That would be something, but it doesn’t solve the underlying problem.

8 months ago

I expect us to play a strong team, as its 3 weeks since our last game and we’ve got a “must win” league game at Killie next Wed.

We need to hit the ground running in the league and that starts with getting the top players match sharp starting tomorrow.

In the 2nd half, when we’ve hopefully put the game to bed, we can introduce new/fringe players but not before.

8 months ago
Reply to  The Cha

Sorry should have said, good detailed article apart from the boycott issue that I don’t agree with.

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  The Cha

Cheers Cha, and of course I respect your opinion on the boycott. Team selection for the Rugby Park encounter next week might be a bit tricky in one or two areas due the horrendous playing surface as some of our best players don’t adapt well to it and absolutely no risk can be taken on any players who might be carrying knocks.

Bhoycott
8 months ago

Etims if you went into a newsagents to buy the Celtic View and were constantly being short-changed and getting called a Fenian bastard by the staff, would you continue to shop there?

Of course not.

Well why the hell are Celtic fans still funding the SFA?

Wringing our collective hands and moaning about the injustice of it all won’t change a thing if we continue to fund the very thing we are complaining about.

Action speaks louder than words and shouting Fuck the SFA at cup games is a futile gesture, and you know what, they aren’t listening cos they are too busy counting your money!

Celtic fans sing about the Irish struggle for independence and the great sacrifices made to attain that goal.

Its time we made a few ourselves and starved the SFA of cash.

Bhoycott or put up Celtic.

Puggy67
8 months ago

Yet again a great effort YB and thank you. The combination of your forensic analysis, Ralph’s apostrophe abuse infused humour and the Muppet balcony in the comments is taking ETims to another level. Clearly not 5. Can’t go with this boycott pish. Picture yourself at 14, 15 and your da saying off you go with your mates to a semi or final, and all the old farts boycott? Faithful through and through. Fuck the SFA. Fuck boycotts. It’s your presence that sickens them.

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Puggy67

Cheers Puggy and believe me, I understand your side of the argument. Every individual has a limit to their patience though and if the cheating continues to get even worse as the season goes on, something will have to give. I get the feeling that change will never happen unless drastic measures are taken.

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Puggy67

I replied Puggy but it got blocked. Probably pop up later.

portpower
8 months ago
Reply to  Puggy67

CS,are you whacking a tenner on the Thumb for the first goal?

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Puggy67

Cheers Puggy, my reply didn’t come through but will hopefully appear later.

Bhoycott
8 months ago
Reply to  Puggy67

Spot on Charlie. The problem with Scottish football isn’t so much that its full of oranges, its that there’s plenty of lemmings willing to give them their cash.

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago

Elhamed will be out for at least a couple more weeks CS with a groin injury. Oddly enough, another RB option Lee O’Connor has been linked with Thistle regarding a possible loan move. I’d prefer him to go to Oxford Utd as the overall standard of football is a good bit better in English League 1 than in the Scottish Championship so he’d benefit a lot more down there.

8 months ago

Great stuff yoker and I pulled out of the cup scheme years ago as part of my protest against the corrupt regime.
I also wished for a boycott of the cup finals and semi finals over the past 3 seasons. Of course it was a dream of mine which was never going to happen.
But imagine if the world media turned up as Celtic supporters stood shoulder to shoulder outside hampden now that would have been a story to tell.
The cup was a great finale to the season now I couldn’t give a feck about it.
Tomorrow night strongest side possible Rogic Ntcham to start for me.
Forster
Bauer Jullien Bitton Hayes
Forrest Brown Ntcham McGregor
Rogic
Edouard

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  jimmybee

Cheers Jimmy, this thing is starting to gather momentum as the stakes get higher and the cheating gets worse so sooner or later something’s bound to happen.

portpower
8 months ago

Gday Yokerbhoy.
Great summary of our opposition.
Patience is need for this Cup game but once we get going let
s see if we have the instinct to tear a side apart.

4:30am kick-off over here for me.
I reckon Ralph`s to get his double figures.

Weclome to Celtic FC Patryk and Ismaila.

Daniel Arzani Fenian Army.

Enjoy.

Devoy45
8 months ago
Reply to  portpower

Yokerbhoy your stuff is excellent! Good craic. Thanks for all of it. Most of us on the site are of Irish descent and we have hundreds of years of boycott (our word and invention) and protest. However, why not withhold the money we earn for the SPFL through our Europa League wins? Simply say we will not share these earnings with a corrupt league until certain standards are met. Money is power and that action won’t harm our team on the pitch. We could suggst that we give that money to famine relief. We also need a legal team to defend our club and reputation if Lawwell and the Board won’t do it. I’m surprised that our board member Brian Wilson (recently awarded a CBE) who constantly speaks out against Scottish independence (i.e. democracy) can’t speak out against prejudice and corruption in the SPFL? Silence can be
deafening! Yokerbhoy keep up the good work. Thanks from all of us.

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Devoy45

Excellent post Devoy. Agree with you on all points. Many thanks to you sir.

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  portpower

G’day Port,
glad you enjoyed the summary. I hope it’s a decent game anyway and worth staying up for in your case. The pitch at Firhill is wide so there will be plenty of space for our lads to exploit their wobbly defence. All the best mate.

portpower
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

We`re back, baby.

M1kks
8 months ago

Hampden Boycott sounds like the way forward, but as our board is just as complicate boycotting any home games would send a message to our custodians.

scouse bhoy
8 months ago

it all started with the same club nonsense until the media back up their front page headline that 140 years of history ended in 2012 then the most successful club going for 55 will continue. we were accused of paranoia for years when all we wanted was justice. when you look back the nine in a row years and the treble treble were truly magnificent achievements against the most biased organisation in world football.

Rebus67
8 months ago

Yoker,

You are an asset to this site. Keep up the analysis. I did see highlights of the PT vs DU game and Thistle were woefull!

Rebus

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Rebus67

That’s very kind of you Rebus. I hope you haven’t been affected by those terrible blizzards that are blowing over in Canada at the moment. Let’s hope we can see a few goals later on.

Rebus67
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

Yoker,

Where I used to live, St John’s has declared a state of emergency. People in tge city have snow inside their houses as an avalanche burst their windows and piled snow into the house. Power is down and no work can commence to fix it until the storm abates.

Fortunately, we are clear here so I can het to a hockey game.

Rebus

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Rebus67

What a nightmare for those poor folk. We’re in for a nasty storm on the Mediterranean coast ourselves tomorrow with hurricane winds and torrential rain.

rebus67
8 months ago

Celtic dominating this game, as expected but not creating many chances from open play. The game should be over but failure to get a second goal has given PT hope that they can steal something. They almost did at the end of the half.

We dominate the midfield but there is a lack of creativity inside the box.

Rebus

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  rebus67

Good control of the game most of the time with the odd lapse here and there. It had the flavour of a pre-season or early season game where there is some good energy but a wee bit of rustiness, like a machine that needs some oiling. Very lucky to get away with that one on 45 mins when Rudden picked up the ball after Broonie’s error to pick out Miller at the back post. Don’t know how he missed.
Some lovely skill by Rogic on several occasions after the interval and that was a very poor decision for the penalty right at the end. Still, job done and onto the next one. Hope Bitton will be ok but it looks like a hamstring.

Rebus67
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

Yoker,

As you say the job was done but, frankly, that is all you can say. Yes, the team may be rusty. Yes, a new formation was tried. Let’s hope that explains what was a dismal performance. What has happen to Frimpong? Has he been told to cut out trying to beat a man in and around the opposition penalty area? I hope Not. Why did neither Frim nor Taylor go to the bye line and cut the ball back into the penalty area? They both had skills to do it. So why did they not? Why were Edouard and Rogic permitted to showboat with little flicks that did not come off? Why were so few real chances created against a really poor team? Why did the manager praise the team’s performance when we were rubbish and sagged in the second half to allow Thistle back into it?

I shall give you a clue. It is the same answer to all of the above. I sense wheels getting ready to come off, sadly.

Rebus

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Rebus67

I agree totally with all your technical observations Rebus although I don’t want to put such a negative spin on things just yet. By mid-Feb we’ll have a far clearer picture as regards which direction we’re moving in. There was far too much in the way of sideways and backwards passing and, apart from the two goals, the snazzy touches shown by Edouard and Rogic plus Taylor’s nutmeg in the first half were about the only moments I really enjoyed. It’s true that Thistle played five men at the back and space was very tight in the box, but still no excuse. It’s a game we should have romped. Here’s hoping for a far better show on Wednesday night.

Devoy45
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

CS All true. A ‘rusty’ performance but one which doesn’t give us cause to worry. Griff will come good and make a helluva difference to how we line up in the future. However, I would like to see us ignite against Killie, a tough venue but we are due for a real blow-out. Start both Taylor and Ajer on that surface. They know it better than most. Hail, hail…

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

Well, it was only Thistle we were playing, a team that sits second bottom of the second tier with a notoriously soft midfield, so of course we dominated the game but was it pleasing on the eye? Especially during long periods of the second half our bhoys were in third gear and started to allow the game to drift. Substitutions should have been made a lot earlier to try and freshen things up. Frimpong and Taylor certainly put in a shift but repeatedly slowed things down by passing the ball backwards even when they had a great opportunity to get past their man, take the ball to the bye line and put in a dangerous ball. There were a couple of horrendous errors at the back with players switching off as well. It can be good to change tactics, try things out and mix things up a bit to be less predictable but I think wingers should have been deployed to make full use of the wide Firhill pitch. I was disappointed to find that Shved didn’t even make the bench after Lenny had talked him up during the Dubai training trip. Was he injured as well?

Yoker Bhoy
8 months ago
Reply to  Yoker Bhoy

Fair enough, we’re through and that’s the main thing. As I replied to Rebus earlier, I don’t want to draw any kind of conclusions from yesterday as it’s the first match after the break with a different type of formation on a poor playing surface. Let’s just say I didn’t enjoy it as much as you did so I don’t think I’ll bother watching it again. I’m hopeful of some good performances/results over the next few league games although Rugby Park could be a tough one.

MabozzaRitchie
8 months ago

what a load of shite. Frimpong and Taylor for fuck sake.

Doc
8 months ago

Delighted to see us playing 442. I thought we were poor but still dominated the game, all their chances were preventable, and we seemed to carry a real goal threat.

Our midfield looked like it changed shape a bit, after the goal, and our tempo dropped. Good to see Griffiths scoring and our corners looked more effective.

Happy with the game, we have got through a potential banana skin against a dodgy ref and we are in the next round.

Devoy45
8 months ago
Reply to  Doc

It’s been a while since we kept a clean sheet and since we’ve scored 3 or more goals. Killie away has not been easy in the past but…I too was happy with the ‘new’ formation and with Rogic getting his mojo back. Griff will be more than fine…

Sancheto
8 months ago

Boycott the Scottish Cup and the LC. I wrote in the comments section a couple of months ago (somebody may be able to dig it out?) highlighting as to why this is the only course of action we as fans have to have any affect on either the Celtic board or the SFA/SPFL. If the money dries up from these games then it will quickly bring the effected parties to the table pretty quickly, just look how quickly they shite themselves when Rangers (IL) went pop!

You mad about ETims or just plain mad? Why not buy the t-shirt at http://etims.spreadshirt.co.uk/