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Celtic Diary Monday October 15

“Dear Craig,

Please excuse (fill in as applicable) from your squad for the (fill in as applicable) game as he isn’t feeling very well this morning.

Yours, Neil.


Can someone make sure Neil Lennon gets this template and uses it?

Scotlands World Cup hopes took a severe battering  (hopes! ha!) when Wales came from behind to win 2-1 in Cardiff on friday. More importantly, James Forrest and Scott Brown are injured, hopefully not too serious, and with another 33 players involved at various international levels last weekend, no wonder many supporters are beggining to wonder if its all worth it.

Scotland can point to poor refereeing, an improved performance and a slice of bad luck, but what they don’t seem to want to do is point the finger at a catalogue of poor management decisions which have taken the team to two points in three games, and with a game in Belgium tomorrow, that record doesn’t look like improving before the domestic stuff starts again. That game is on ESPN ( and BBC Scotland – Ed), who are holding a meeting today to find out which idiot thought of that idea.

The luckiest, and probably happiest Celts this weekend were Gary Hooper and Kelvin Wilson , the only first teamers not involved with their country, who got four days off instead, to recharge their batteries. Hooper is at the centre of a few little stories concerning his contract talks, which some say have broken down, and Liverpool are ready to snap him up in January, adding to the long list of deals already sorted if you believe that kind of thing. Or it could be that Hooper (who had a weekend in London to ease his boredom while Kris Commons was away) will go to Newcastle, despite doubts on a Geordie blog about his ability, with Bemba Ba heading to Merseyside.  Newcastle Utd, where players have to leave if they want international recognition. One player, can’t remember his name, even went on loan for two years before signing full time in order to shake the tag of being a Newcastle player. Subsequently, he got picked for the squad. Big goalie, I think he is., though, quotes a recent Talksport show, which hinted that Hooper was already talking to Liverpool, and several Celtic forums are already discussing his price. Of course, the lack of domestic action has nothing to do with all these stories taking up space, and no doubt Hooper is really unhappy at Celtic, and wants to join Brendan Rodgers at the English club, and help them stave off relegation. We should be used to it by now. If there are any real stories out there, they wouldn’t be on Talksport, thats for sure.

So, how did some of the other Celts do for their countries? Efe Ambrose scored in the first minute of his game for Nigeria against Liberia, and dedicated the goal to his baby girl, Emilio Izzaguerre helped his side to a 0-0 draw against Panama, meaning they must beat Canada at home to qualify for the final round.

Beram Kayal was on the bench for Israel, and Mikael Lustig was not responsible for the Faroe Isles taking a shock lead over Sweden, before the Swedes overturned it in the second half. althouugh he has asked for Danny McGrain to be sitting near him in his next outing.

Although Rangers didn’t have a game this weekend, they still managed to hog the headlines. Owner Charles Green said that big clubs would soon play each other weekly, rather than the likes of Southampton  or Swansea, and claimed that Aston Villa were “useless” and not worth their £240m income. Questionable in itself, but he has since apologised to Villa, and quite rightly. Clubs in the fourth tier of a country that has roughly the same population as the area around Birmingham, where Villa play, shouldn’t go chucking their weight around, and should respect the smaller clubs.

Green is also claiming a bright new future for his phoenix club, claiming that hundreds of millions of rangers fans will watch their games, buy their products and buy shares. Hugh Adam a former Rangers director who was around the last time they tried to raise public money, or draw in investment from ex-pat supporters, hasn’t commented, but he will as soon as he stops laughing, which could be as soon as January.

Green needs to raise money fairly quickly, although its interesting to see he wants to strengthen the playing squad, which , of course he cannot, due to a ban. Sandy Jardine, the former player now surrealist commentator and advisor to the nation, claims that the current squad need to “shape up or ship out”, meaning that the Under 14s could be looking at a swift promotion to the first team.

The press are starting to break ranks, and occasionally a decent article on their plight will appear, one that tells the truth to an extent, but the press still shy away from the conduct of the clubs support, the impending tax case, the cheating under the Murray era, and the arse the SFA made of it in the first place.

Although Graeme Sounness was interviewed in a paper at the weekend, and on the subject of Rangers, the former manager who could be reasonably said to be closer to David murray than anyone except possibly Walter Smith said-er nothing.

The author shamefully and disgracefully decided it was “better not to go there” And they wonder why circulations are falling. They wonder why internet bampots hold them up as figures of ridicule, and they wonder why nobody believes a word they write. When all this is over, and the game settles down again, those involved in the entire fiasco should be lined up against a wall and have the shite they published read aloud to them by her out of Eastenders who shouts “Riiickkeee” a lot, for all eternity.

The teaser on Friday was called-or guessed -correctly by the Lurgan Tiger, when he said it was Emilio Izzagurre, with 45 caps for Honduras. Today lets change the theme.

Without looking, which club are  the leading scorers so far in this seasons SPL?

Earlier today in the diary, we spoke of real stories and ignoring nonsense. Last week we spoke of Barcelona running scared at the prospect of facing Lennys Lions, and here we have the reaction of main man Lionel Messi.






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Mick M
10 years ago

Caley Thistle or Hibs

10 years ago

Sorry…. i looked.

10 years ago

Point of order re Fridays teaser Ralph Malph – I don’t know where you are getting your stats from but Georgious has 61 caps for Greece and Izzy has 50 for Honduras (according to Wikipedia Celtic) after that you have Joe Ledley and Miku in the low 40’s!!

I demand a re-count!!

10 years ago


10 years ago

heard a second hand account of mr greenes dealings with players and agents doon sooth, attempted to bluff his way through meetings for his own financial gain.

it doesn’t look good for the sevconians

Ralph malph
10 years ago

Stats for caps from official Celtic site

10 years ago

Well Ralph Malph I would suggest Celtic website is wrong wikipedia and 11v11 both have Samaras on 61 & 58 respectively but 11v11 is shown as upto date way back in june so would suggest Sammi is defo over 60 since start of season!!

10 years ago

soccerway has Samaras on sixty, up to and including the bosnia game on Friday. it lists the games as well. The Celtic site is, according to this, which seems very accurate , way out. So apologies, it seems the only way to clarify it would be to ask /samaras himself.

From now on , the teasers will be along the lines of “what colour socks do you have on?

As far as Wikipeadis goes, however, if it told me it was raining I’d go outside to have a look

10 years ago

Ralph malph thanks for that!! 11v11 also has each of his games listed even at under 21 level!!

Wikipedia yeah can be a bit dodgy on this occasion appears more accurate & up to date than celtic website tho!!


10 years ago

Now I know why I have been losing, Ralph!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Love the article, especially the ‘Toon’ cloons bit – you might remember why.
The late response is because I was given a rare treat over the last few days, a trip home to family and friends in Scotia land. Now trying to catch up on the good and important stuff :>)

You mad about ETims or just plain mad? Why not buy the t-shirt at