Winger Derk Boerrigter has expressed his amazement at the support that his new club have both at home and away;
” Every club should have fans like this. Its amazing ! Its unbelievable ! In the last game against Dundee Utd away , there were more supporters for Celtic than Dundee Utd. Its amazing, I was thinking what is this ? ”
Er, well apart from being logistically impossible, he might do well to wait until he has a bad game, and the notoriously fickle fans start to abuse him. Wingers, because they are closer to the crowd than other players, are subject to more scrutiny than other players, and we’ll see if he still thinks they are amazing when the side are 2-1 down to Hearts and he’s having a Reggie. ( Reggie=Reggie Blinker-Stinker, which is not just rhyming slang, whatever Reggie will tell you himself.)
With Martin O’ Neill poised to take the Ireland job, Anthony Stokes feels he might just have a chance at an international recall. He doesn’t exactly blame Trappatoni for his exile, but the inference is there;
” He hated me. And he is a tosser. ”
Stokes didn’t say that, but he might as well have.
“I can not really worry too much about that as I just have to concentrate on my form my club. If a new manager comes in and decides I am doing well enough then I will get the call-up.
“I just need to get myself in the Celtic team, hopefully do well. If I do that, I think I will give myself a good chance of being back in and around the squad. But that is completely out of my hands. It is down to whoever takes over.”
“I always thought that if I could have a good run of form with my club that the door should have been opened to me. I do not see why I was out of the selection plans, to be perfectly honest with you,” he said
“I pulled out of a squad and I had my own reasons for that. Trapattoni was not exactly one you could pick up the phone and speak to. Listen, it is just the way it is. I have not been feeling too bad about it because I did not do too much wrong, to be honest. “It would have been nice to have had a chat with him but that is football. Every manager is different. Some managers are approachable, some aren’t and some have a good balance.”
With no new deal yet signed with Celtic, Stokes has a big few months ahead of him. Supporters are anxious to see if Teemu Pukki is the real thing, whilst Stokes has to play his way back into favour. He’s hoping the upcoming Champions League games will help him do that.
“I am looking forward to it, massively,” he said.
“There were mixed emotions last year. There was a great atmosphere at all the games and it was great to watch the lads do so well.
“But there was that little bit inside where I wanted to be involved.
“I hate watching any football to be honest, especially when it is my own team because I want to be playing.
“It was difficult but it spurred me on a little bit to work harder and try to come back stronger.
“We just have to go out and concentrate on our own game. We know it’s going to be difficult against some of the best sides in the world so there will be no easy tasks.
“We just need to try and do what we did last year – stay compact and see what we can do.”
What he really wants to do is sign a new contract.
“I am in the last year so the sooner it’s done the better.”
Asked if he was becoming frustrated, the former Sunderland and Hibernian forward replied: “It is one these things, it is not for me to say, I don’t know how the club deal with other contracts, I don’t ask questions.
“I am in my last year and I would like to get it sorted as soon as possible but it is not really down to me.
“There is not much more I can do ”
Unless he has a hell of a start to the season, he might well be on his way…
Theres a huge queue outside the ticket office at Celtic Park this morning-stretching all the way back to Hamilton Services on the M74 if you believe the clubs website, as season book holders snap up extra packages for the three home games against Barcelona, Ajax and Milan. £115 for adults and £84 concessions is still a good price when you consider the quality of opposition, but its a lot to ask the wife for without offering to do the dishes or move the house closer to the shops. Far easier just to nick it out of her purse and blame the kids. It might help if you leave some cocaine or heroin in their bedrooms to make the story more convincing.
In fact, if you live in some parts of Manchester or Glasgow, it won’t take much convincing anyway.
With the opener against Milan now less than a week away, its down to the Daily Express to start the gloom and doom. Scott Burns, under the headline
EXCLUSIVE: Celtic face year in sidelines
has the reader trembling as he begins to read the story…
CELTIC have been rocked by the news that Steven Mouyokolo’s season could be over.
He doesn’t stop there, though you wish he would;
” It is a major setback for Celtic as they prepare for their Champions League ties against AC Milan, Barcelona and Ajax”
” Manager Lennon may now consider looking for an out-of-contract central defender. He only has Efe Ambrose and Virgil van Dijk, although Charlie Mulgrew and Mikael Lustig can fill in if needed. ”
Aye, okay. He then goes on to name the four more than capable centre halfs we have, but we need to look for a player in the market where all the players no-one else wants can be found.
Now, thats a wee report ahead of a major game next week. Compare that to this fawning piece in the Evening times, as rookie manager Ally Mccoist prepares to lead his assault on the Scottish domestic scene, from Matthew Lindsay, is in serious trouble with the Advertising Standards Agency for this little outburst
Well, he’s entitled to his opinion, like anyone else. Anyway, under this dramatic headline;
A ton weight has been on shoulders of Ally in journey to hell and back
Lindsay tells of the trauma and the pain of McCoists year in charge over at Ibrox..
“Craig Whyte, administration, pay-cuts, huge fines, a signing ban, liquidation, a shadowy takeover, Charles Green, the departure of virtually every senior member of his squad; you name it he has had to deal with it. ”
Yes, perhaps he longs for the good old days, when he had friends at the club.
” It is something of a minor miracle that he will take charge of his 100th match when Rangers play Arbroath in an SPFL League One match on Saturday. ”
Given the chunky chaps remarkable lack of talent, I have to agree with the last bit..
” who would have blamed him if he had decided his future lay elsewhere? ”
Aye, good luck with that
Fifty year old clueless fat bloke wants a job. Can talk complete bollocks with confidence. ”
Thats my bit, not Lindsays, but I figure you already worked that out. The article, which I genuinely thought was a spoof, continues..
“Myriad other opportunities, inside and outside of football, would have presented themselves if he had moved on.”
” Yet, McCoist does not, as the saying he inadvertently coined in an off-the-cuff comment to reporters at the height of the Ibrox club’s troubles last year, do walking away. ”
Someone keeps following him.
“Super Ally” is still as determined now as he was when he was appointed manager to bring significant success to Govan. ”
With his own particular style of management, presumably.
” That has, of course, so far eluded him. The only trophy Rangers have lifted during his reign was the one they received for landing the Third Division last season. ”
( To be fair, they’ve only been going for one season, so its not too bad. )
” McCoist accepts himself that he still has to prove himself as Rangers manager. As adored as he is by Light Blues supporters, many are sceptical of his coaching abilities. ”
But not you, Matthew, obviously . Wee bit of advice for you here, from a greater man than I;
Matthews not done yet;
” Since first stepping into the dugout for an SPL game against Hearts at Ibrox on Saturday, July 23, 2011, he has suffered his fair share of heartbreak.
After less than a month as manager his side had crashed out of both the Champions League and the Europa League in the qualifying rounds to Malmo and NK Maribor respectively.
Rangers would go on to lose to Falkirk away in the League Cup and Dundee United at home in the Scottish Cup. McCoist’s track record in the cup competitions is far from impressive.
Last season they lost 3-0 to both Inverness Caley Thistle at Ibrox in the League Cup and Dundee United at Tannadice in the Scottish Cup.
The defeat to Second Division rivals Queen of the South in the Ramsdens Cup at Ibrox was, albeit they went out on penalties after extra-time, painful in the extreme.
As were the results his young and hastily- assembled team slumped to against minnows like Peterhead, Berwick, Annan, Elgin City and Stirling Albion in the fourth tier in the 2012/13 campaign. ”
“Look, can you leave that bit out, ” asked Ally
” But those capable of rational thought realise McCoist has not had the opportunities his predecessors have had. ”
Presumably he includes himself in this category;
” The Glasgow institution went into administration in his first season in charge, players had to take massive reductions in their salaries”
Yes, players did. Mccoist didn’t.
” and then, after the club went into liquidation, most left. ”
Really ? The firm you work for goes bust, so you “left ” ?
What was that he said about ” rational thought ? ”
” McCoist deserves the chance to show what he is capable of as Rangers manager without any distractions and now, finally, appears to be getting that. ”
Well, we hope so.
” many are intrigued to see how he fares with a strong squad at a settled and solvent club.”
So, he is walking away , then, after all ?
” The signs so far this season are encouraging. If his team continues to excel – and it remains an if – he will be manager for another 100 games to come and more. ”
Continues to excel ? They are out of the League Cup before we are even in it .
Matthew Lindsay himself was unavailable for comment, as he is undergoing surgery to remove his tongue, which somehow ended up firmly wedged between the cracks of Allys fat arse. Considering the competition between journalists to attain that position, I suppose he at least deserves a bit of credit.
Apologies to Lindsay if the criticism seems a bit harsh, but he really does need to have a word himself
Now, that article actually typifies all that is wrong with Scottish football, so to balance it out, a wee mention and a lot of praise to St. Mirren, ahead of the appointment of new manager Paul Hartley next week. Well, its Etims, its Friday, so a wee rumour wouldn’t go amiss.
The buddies, according to Diary reader Raymybhoy, have a scheme where they get involved with Fire Safety at schools, and they dish out free tickets for kids.
Thats the sort of thing that is needed to put the game back on its feet.
They have a similar thing at schools in Larkhall, where there is a competition each week.
First prize is two tickets for Ibrox, second prize is a season book, and third prize is a two year playing contract.
Finally, justice was avoided yesterday when the SFA gave Ian Black, who had betted against his team in matches he played in ( surely the charge should have been one of ” common sense ” ? ) was handed a ten match ban, seven of which were suspended, and a £7,500 fine.
Apart from anything else, how must his team mates, and manager, and supporters feel that they have a player on their side, who by standing to win money if they lose, isn’t really on their side at all ?
Don’t suppose that has occured to them.
Yesterday, the picture lead us to the one and only Jimmy Johnstone, who was dubbed the Flying Flea by the French press after destroying Nantes back in 1966.
Heres another character to chew over…