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Celtic Diary Friday December 7

In an interview with the Times newspaper, Neil Lennon said that in January, “I do not want to spend mega money on one player because that will only disrupt the spirit we have here. There are positions we would like to strengthen ,but whether we will do it or not is another thing.” On the prospect of some players leaving, he made special mention of Gary Hooper, saying “Hooper is someone I hang my hat on because he is a goalscorer. I have no doubt teams will be sniffing, but ,maybe reaching the last sixteen will persuade them all to stay a bit longer.”

Well, its not as though they can play for anyone else in Europe this season, so perhaps our own little adventure will be one the likes of Forster, Wanyama and Hooper will hang around for.

The key point in this statement is about breaking the spirit at the club. That extra factor, epitomised in the Barcelona home game when Charlie Mulgrew told Lionel Messi where to go, has been crucial in the European run this year, and cannot be understated. When the last sixteen comes around, it will be the defining factor on whether or not we go through.

The spirit at the club, and the man management style that Lennon has may be under threat though, as class clown Scott Brown now has a twitter account. His contributions to social media so far include Gary Hoopers hairdresser being on Crimewatch, Joe Ledleys ex-girlfriend being a sheepsking jacket, and one player wanting to get Paris St. Germain because he has never been to Germany.

Of course, its all in fun, and shows that the players are indeed a tight knit bunch, and lets supporters get a feel for the team and its mood. Just can’t help thinking Brown will get into a spat with a supporter over some trivial issue. Worth looking in on his account though. It is funny.

Kris Commons, like a few fans wants to face Manchester Utd next, as he was a fan as a kid, but personally someone we haven’t played before would be nice.

Theres been a bit of talk about the other SPL clubs getting a ยฃ235,000 winfall on the back of Celtic progressing to the knockout stages, yet that story first appeared on the BBC website back in August, as it was in fact the result of reaching the group stages. Funny how it wasn’t shouted from the rooftops then.

Another thing I must have missed was when Fergus McCann boycotted Ibrox, as Chick Young claimed on Radio Scotland the other night. I remember Murray banning the Celtic support, but the other occasion must have slipped my mind. Young, of course, is paid to comment on Scottish football, and I guess if nothing happens, he has to make something up.

Despite raising the profile of Scottish football and boosting the bank balances of their competitors, the Daily Record continued with the Traynoresque policy of featuring a new club in division Three, having an eight page pullout celebrating their 140 year history, just a few months after their front page read “RIP Rangers”. Like the readers of that rag, it seems even the staff don’t believe what they print. This particular edition was featured on Sky News and met with a wry smile by the presenter, and suddenly Alex Thomsons comments on a compliant media rang true for a lot of people not in Scotland.

Speaking of the bold Channel four man, his latest blog calls on those in receipt of EBTs during the last decade or so of the dead club to come forward and make a public show of paying the “loans ” back. As a mark of respect and acknowledgement to their loyal supporters. Wow, stay away from the banks for a few days, it looks like they are going to be busy. He also called on Campbell Ogilvie to repay his, but lets be honest, thats unlikely to happen as well.

You see,they still don’t think they’ve done anything wrong.

Charles Green has continued his stance of not taking any tickets when his phoenix club face Dundee Utd, and the Arabs have replied and said that they won’t stoop to a war of words, instead they will speak to the SFA. Could all this bluster be because the Rangers, as rumoured, have been asked to pay up front for these briefs, on account of still owing United money? Do they have that money?

Richard Gough somewhat outspokenly called for an end to the nonsense, and said that McCoist will need all the support he can get up there, and the way to hurt United would be to beat them. Obviously he has got himself a new ghost writer, but this was quickly countered by Walter Smith who more or less said Utd killed us off , and they deserve everything they get.

Theres a story going around that as a show of support, a Celtic fan bought three scarves from the Tannadice club shop, and instructed the staff to give them to the first three kids that came in. Theres a campaign, which may or may not work, to get different fans of different clubs into the away end for the game, as a show of support from the people against the peepil. Can’t keep tham out of the news, can we?

Green, countering any bad publicity, says he will hand over his share to charity, so in effect, Dundee Utd should just send the money straight there. Cut down on any possible administration fees.

You’d think they had a share issue or something coming up. Actually, they have, and one that looks certain to succeed if you believe Green, or doomed to failure if you have an ounce of common sense. Its all in the detail, you see.

Something about buying into a holding company who own another company who run the club, and I quote, that “plays at Ibrox Stadium” and “operates out of Murray Park”

Notice, no mention of ownership of the two main assets.. If you have any friends who are considering investing their hard earned money with this man, point out the wording on the prospectus to them – if thats what it is, and leave them to make up their own minds.

Or ask them to request a copy of the accounts. You know, the ones that American guy looked at before he ran off laughing.

Alloa Athletic were asked to wait for their share of the cup gate by the Ibrox club, and I rang them this morning and asked if they had been paid yet. They wouldn’t tell me, but thats perhaps because I told them I was an internet bampot. Wonder if they have, and if so, why not just say so?

Still, I guess that makes me an intrepid journalist, having already with that call shown more interest in Rangers affairs than anyone at Clyde , the Record , or STV.

Now , back to Celtic , and the latest conspiracy against the club from the SFA. A shocking tale which will leave the reader in no doubt that the days of Jim Farry have indeed returned. And its all completely true.

With the Champions League final being held on Saturday May 25 next year, it seems the SFA have got the Scottish Cup final on the following Sunday, the 26th, forcing an already tired Celtic squad to play two games in two days.

Now tell me things have changed at Hampden. Any money Celtic make from Europe will have to be used to sign extra players, and supporters will have to work nights as well to cover costs.

Come on , SFA, a wee bit of consideration here, please.

Rod Stewart is bringing out a charity single and the money raised will be split between the Teenage Cancer Trust and the Celtic Charity fund. “Have youself a Merry Little Christmas is taken from his latest album, and will be available soon. Buy it, and keep whatever shite comes from the X factor off the number one spot. They might scrap the show then.

Yesterday , quite a few of you remembered Billy Connolly saying that Celtic is the one constant in his life. The Big Yin has also endorsed the charity single in his role as president of the Celtic Charity fund. Celtic have always been a club with a more than generous charitable aim, and yet were criticised for petty pointscoring when Fergus McCann donated what to who and why?




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KIERAN Gallagher
11 years ago

he gave the players’ bonus payment from the european game with Croatia Zagreb in 1998 to Yorkhills Ckildrens Hospital.

11 years ago

He gave John Collins’ transfer fee to AS Monaco as a gesture of good will?

11 years ago

Aye, how times and some supporters attitudes have changed. It was all about the players then, and we looked towards the Death Star in envy and said why aren’t we spending money and treating players like spoiled brats? The last 18 months have shown exactly why. Fergus McCann – visionary.

Run Sammy Run
11 years ago
Reply to  Binkabhoy

Well said.
About 4 years ago I saw Mr McCann in a shop in Boston. I worked up the courage to go up and say hello and thank him for all he did for the club. Have to admit I was half expecting him to be a wee grumpy swine but on the contrary he was a real gentleman and chatted away for 5 mins.
Now if I could just him again today then I could ask him what the answer is to the question.

11 years ago

Did he put a fiver in Zombie FC shares?

11 years ago

Does anyone know what Walter Smith means when he says that Dundee United helped put Rangers into administration?

I thought it was their own fault, but then they dont do “admitting guilt” do they.

Run Sammy Run
11 years ago

Still don’t know the answer to the question but I was doing a bit of reminiscing and reading about Fergus.
My favorite quotes from Mr McCann were “”Being a Celtic supporter is not always easy, but it is always worthwhile” and on his dislike for agents he once said “You pledge your ยฃ100,000, get yourself a mobile phone and you’re off, you’re a football agent”.
On working under him my hero Tommy Burns said “”I probably did 15 or 20 years as a manager in those three years”. God Bless you Tommy and thank you Mr McCann.

andy docherty
11 years ago

on sky news yesterday morning, the journalist that does the papers mentioned how ridiculous it was of the daily ranger to include an 8 page pull out of sevco on the day after one of the gretest night for Celtic. The DR did something similar a few weeks ago following one of our european nights, had a 4 page spread on the 20th anniversary of rangers playing leeds united. The DR are no longer even pretending to be unbiased – they realise their audience is mostly sevco fans, so are doing everything they can to keep them happy (p.s., I don’t buy the DR, I borrow it from one of my co-workers, honest).
My favourite story about Fergus, which I hope is true, is that there was a meeting called by the residents unhappy that the new North(?) stand was interfering with their tv reception. After much debate, Fergus agreed to compensate those affected – he told them to just bring their tv licences round to CP and they would get a payment- nobody appeared.

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