In fact, it would be fair to say I’m sweating like an Ibrox director with the accounts open in front of him.
We’ll come to that later, if we can;t think of anything else to talk about.
The recent round of friendlies has enthused/alarmed/excited/depressed supporters to varying degrees, with some bemoaning that the defence isn’t up to scratch, that some players are getting starting slots and shouldn’t be, others are not starting when they should, and all of them are right to some extent, at least in their own minds, but after an unbeaten run with pretty much anyone who brought their boots with them getting a game it’s clear that the run is all about players well, getting a run.
What seems to have passed largely unnoticed is the work behind the scenes in the organisation and logistics of the games. Which became apparent after the Banik Ostrava game when the players were in the air on their way back to Glasgow while the support were still figuring which bus took them back into the town for a beer.
If Brendan Rodgers lifted things to a higher level behind the scenes, it’s fair to say that Ange Postecoglou is at least his equal in that.
One further thing of note.
When these games were announced, the manager said they had been picked to aid the work the players were putting in pre season, and that’s becoming apparent now. The seven goal opener against Viktoria Wiener was to encourage confidence and get the wheels turning again, the game against Rapid was to get used to a hostile crowd, Ostrava presumably was close to the airport for getting home, and Blackburn was to remind us that most other teams will just kick our players and instill a wee bit of aggression in our side.
As Matt O’Riley said post match….
“They were feisty, a bit nasty and left a few on a few of us,”
“Tony’s boot was split in half, which says enough, but it was competitive and it’s what we want.
We have to handle it because we’ll come up against teams in the Scottish Prem who’ll try to kick us to try to stop us. But if we’re on it with the counter-press and crisp on the ball the rest will take care of itself.”
The latter, of course, has already been stated by the boss. We do need a bit more agression and that was beginning to show against Rapid, although there is probably just a natural instinct to kick anything in a Rapid jersey.
Things are going to plan, it seems, with fitness and formation picking up where it left off last year, and Joe Hart has got his howler out of the way early, so there’s not much to moan about.. though some will still find something.
The defence has come in for pelters, but in truth, when second choice central pairing Welsh and Carter Vickers play, we’re pretty solid, it’s only when Calamity Julien is forced to play that goals are conceded, in the main, which shows that if a centre half doesn’t arrive, young Bosun Lawal will be fourth in line.
Julien almost ended up at Schalke, but for some reason they changed their mind. We don’t know why, but their doctor can still be heard to laugh on the Westphalian night air….
With Postecoglou saying earlier this month that he was prepared to wait for the right player to join the club, most of us took that to mean Jota, the Portuguese winger who was traversing the highways and byways of the globe , enjoying his last few days as a Benfica player.
The gaffer , however, was throwing us a curveball as he repeated this week the same thing about two as yet unnamed players, that is unnamed in the sense that no one knows who they are.
Or where they’re from, or what he wants them to do when they get here.
It’s simple really, he doesn’t want other clubs to get wind of them, and possibly gazump him.
Mind you, there is something to moan about…. as the cost of living increases almost by the hour with shameless profiteering from energy companies through to medical equipment suppliers and virtually anything else we need or want, the cancer has spread to our own heart, here at Celtic Park.
It’s not even how expensive the food and drink is that riles, it’s the seemingly random nature of the numbers, for which my naturally cynical nature suspects is for a reason that benefits the retailer.
Actually, it’s mostly the ridiculous overcharging of a captive market that riles most.
Take the kids to the game or buy them something to eat. But not both, or you’ll have to sell the house and car.
The catering operation is, it appears, outsourced to Centerplate UK, who recently managed to grab a plug on Glasgow Live for some of their vacancies…..
Match day Catering Staff Required!
Centerplate UK are currently looking to recruit staff for our match day retail catering operation based in Celtic Park.
We are looking for:
Catering Assistants/Till Workers – Duties include cash handling, cleaning & some food prep. (no previous experience necessary although would be an advantage)
Please note these roles are to work Celtic FC home matches only.
You must be available to work at Celtic on a home event.
All roles exceed current national minimum wage.
All applicants must be fluent in conversational English and must have the right to work in the UK.Please note all applicants must be over 16 years of age
If accepted for one of these roles you will need to provide us with your Passport, Proof of Address and Bank Details (It must be your own bank account)
Please note that before starting work you will be required to complete mandatory health & safety and food safety training online.If you are interested in this role please apply.
This is a match day only position and you must be available to work Celtic home fixtures.
Please state in your email what position you would like to be considered for.
” All roles exceed current national minimum wage. ”
Though presumably not by much, because if it were they would say that in the hope of attracting the right candidates.
This is a match day only position and you must be available to work Celtic home fixtures.
If you ever go for an interview with them, ask them for the dates of these fixtures.
Even the club don’t know that yet.
I would suggest that they should be paying considerably more for the positions than minimum wage, considering the degree of flexibility and availability needed for the roles.
Centerplate boast that they are
proud to create bespoke hospitality experiences for premier events and gathering places across the United Kingdom.
For all of our guests, across all the venues we serve, Centerplate remains committed to a single purpose:
Making it better to be there®
Our unique approach to hospitality makes the time people spend together more enjoyable, and more valuable.
For more than 85 years, we have been welcoming people to the moments that matter with award-winning hospitality, exceptional service, and one-of-a-kind guest experiences.
Making it better to be there. Presumably at the event…
They got that right, in fact it would be better to be anywhere else than fumbling for change outside one of their kiosks.
We did say we’d mention the other lot at Ibrox, and that’s because they are just about to sell a player for a record amount to a club who will be registering their second ever biggest outlay.
That’s the talk, at least, around Calvin Bassey, who it seems, is about to join Ajax from “rangers ” for anything between £19m and £27m, depending on how staunch the announcer is and how gullible the reader….
The hordes are overjoyed as Bassey joins fellow superstar Joe Aribo on the next stage out of Dodgy City, as their legendary European final side begins to be broken up for cool hard cash.
And not one of them , as usual, is questioning either the veracity of the amounts coming into the club, where they will be going or why the sudden urge to break up a side that could well have gone on to greater things.
We know they have form for ignoring warning signs, but surely even that lot must be having flashbacks from a decade or so ago ?
UEFA recently updated their financial fair play rules, and as the whole world knows, things at Ibrox are not as clear cut as they appear.
One particular rule stands out…
What are the new regulations?
Given their name, it is no surprise that the key objective of the new regulations is to achieve financial sustainability. These will be achieved through three key pillars: solvency, stability, and cost control.
For solvency, the new no overdue payables (towards football clubs, employees, social/tax authorities, and UEFA) rule will ensure better protection of creditors. Controls will be performed every quarter and there will be less tolerance towards late payers.
The new football earnings requirements are an evolution of the existing break-even requirements and will bring greater ability to club finances. To ease the implementation for clubs, the calculation of football earnings is similar to the calculation of the break-even result. While the acceptable deviation has increased from €30m over three years to €60m over three years, requirements to ensure the fair value of transactions, to improve the clubs’ balance sheet, and to reduce debts have been significantly strengthened.
The biggest innovation in the new regulations will be the introduction of a squad cost rule to bring better cost control in relation to player wages and transfer costs. The regulation limits spending on wages, transfers, and agent fees to 70 per cent of club revenue. Assessments will be performed on a timely basis and breaches will result in pre-defined financial penalties and sporting measures. The new regulations will come into force in June 2022. There will be gradual implementation over three years to allow clubs the necessary time to adapt.
Regular readers will be aware that this was sort of the point of the Resolution 12 campaign, which highlighted that the original Rangers had been allowed to play in Europe despite having an overdue payable, which meant they had broken the entry rules, although there is more than a suspicion that certain heads were turned the other way to this at the SFA, in order to keep the blue pound rolling, which , of course, didn’t work.
Have UEFA become aware of this and quietly pointe dout the those at Ibrox and at Hampden that they will be keeping an eye on them this time ?
I’d normally think i was being overly optimistic, but there has been , as yet, no explanation for the removal of the five star logo from their shirts this season, despite them being so proud of getting fifty five titles….
Someone has pointed their antenna at Ibrox, and that also might explain the firesale , as the club frantically try to balance the books,.
Or are they, to paraphrase a well know rock lyric, waiting for a saviour to rise from the streets ?
The media may well claim all sorts of cash cows are coming home to graze, but the reality is they’ve lost over £100m since their inception, and have been kept alive by soft loans.
Which is about to be ruled out as a viable income stream by UEFA…..
I’ll bet our intrepid investigative hacks are all over this one….