So, the season 2012-13 is finished. History will record that celtic won the league, the cup, made the semi finals of the league cup, and the last sixteen of the Champions League.
Enough to be going on with.
The cup was secured with three well taken goals, and despite Hibernian giving us all an early fright when Eion Doyle headed from eight yards , forcing Forster into a crucial early save, the result was never really in doubt.
Kelvin Wilson was outstanding at the back, Scott Brown was, well Scott Brown in the middle, and Gary Hooper took two out of three good chances to make Neil Lennon only the third man to win a double as Celtic captain and manager. (Stein and McNeill the other two. )
The players have a break now, until pre season starts in three weeks time. Some will be on international duty, and will have less of a break than perhaps they need. This is where they will see the benefit of the time off they had after the league was won. you have to hope so. The Champions league qualifiers are not that far away.
Scott Brown is already looking forward to next season. He said;
“Its huge, not just for me, for every single player and the management staff as well, for everyone at Celtic.”
Actually, he could have been talking about anything. He’s been known to ramble.
” Its a great club and the support we get week in , week out, has been fantastic, so its something to give back to them. We’ve got a great squad and hopefully we can keep the players. Thats what we are trying to do. We have had a great season this year but we need to try and better it next season. We have three qualifiers coming up and we are back in quite early. Hopefully the squad can stay together but thats not up to me. ”
After Sundays game, two goal hero Gary Hooper was caught trackside. After the usual chat about the game, the BBC man couldn’t resist the company line of “Will you be hear next season ? ” , which prompted a change in hoopers expression, and the customary “We’ll see ”
The change in expression, to one of almost contempt, can be looked at two ways. He may have already decided to go, or at least listen to whats on off. Or he could be sick of the question, which seems to pop up every time he’s on air. Whatever the outcome, he seems happy enough with his lot;
“It was a great win in the end and we’re delighted with the double. This, getting to the last sixteen of the Champions League, winning the league and scoring thirty one goals. I’m at the top of my career. At the start of the season my aim was to beat last years total and i did that two games ago. I was unlucky not to get twenty in the league, but I wanted to get past thirty overall and I managed that. This feels even better than the first time we won the Scottish Cup because this time we did it in style. ”
Hooper called it his best season at the club, but didn’t add the words “so far “…
Looking back at the season, manager Neil Lennon said;
” Its been magnificent, we’ve played sixty games this season. We’ve been at the sharp end of every competition we’ve been in. I can’t speak highly enough of the players and supporters. ”
With Gary Hooper not giving any clues to his plans for the future, Lennon was asked if he needed to keep him.
“Of course. He’s a master. He’s been one of my best signings. He’s priceless. Hoopers the master, an absolute master. ”
Right, so he’s in two minds about him.
Perhaps he, and Lawwell when they make the Englishman their final offer should look at the statistics published online in the Celtic Journal. A fellow called Joseph Ruddy has given an in depth look at who did what for the team in 2012-13.
That link will take you to the article, which in itself is excellent, and it opens the eyes a wee bit about Hooper.
He scored 31 goals in 51 games. Add to that ten assists (hate that word-he set ten up sounds better ) and it turns out he was, when playing , involved in 80% of all goals. Put all that together and he is Celtics most effective player. Or as they say in the USA, Most Valuable Player.
No doubt Hoopers agent is already aware of this.
So, the footballs done. What shall we talk about now?
Alexander Tonev, according to the Record, has signed, or will sign, or somthing. Actually, other sources say a deal is virtually done, and that does seem to be the case. Celtic will now have to struggle by with only Samaras, Forrest, commons, McGeouch and now Tonev in the wide spaces, while Kelvin Wilson does a fair impersonation of General Custer at the back.
Notice Paddy McCourt not in that list ? He was handed the captains armband when he came on for a cameo at Hampden, and clearly is for the off. The support managed a half hearted chorus of “Don’t sell McCourt “, but stopped when they realised there was a chance they could convince Lennon to keep him.
Its a terrible shame. McCourt is a gifted footballer. The type you pay to see. But it just hasn’t happened for him at Celtic. He will no doubt grace a new club for a few months before fading away again. ( Known as a Regi Blinker in the trade. )
But whatever he does, we wish him well.
Fraser Forster looks like he’ll be next to break rank. The World Cup is in Brazil next year, and he wants to be there. With England, who actually don’t look that certain to qualify. Forster told the Sun his hopes rest on Celtic getting champions League football. He could do a bit of work on crosses, but hey, what do I know? His take in the last England squad was taken by the Reading keeper, which must have frightened the life out of the big guy. The Sun kept its impartiality with the article, describing Forster as a “former Newcastle fring man “, and not the colossus who performed heroics against Barcelona.
Going back to thethe support on Sunday, they did it again. After the debacle of coughing out the tune of Boys of the Old Brigade, after pointing snipers rifles at Rangers supporters, and other disgraceful antics, this time they raised embarassment to a new level.
This flag, clearly in support of Islamic terrorism, was on full show at the Cup Final.
Even though it was actually this flag, with a crease in it.
The Scotsman, online, was quick to cite EDL members who were outraged-although it was obvious just which group of misfits were really offended. Just another example of some people looking for an excuse to have a go.
Good job they didn’t hear anyone singing “Say Hallal to the Provos ” or Tiocfadh Allah ” Then they’d have been upset.
One hundred and twenty fives years ago today, Celtic played their first ever game, against Rangers, and won 5-2.
1; Michael dolan
2; Edward Pearson
3; James McLaughlin
5; James Kelly
6; Phil Murray
7; Neil MacCallum
8; Tom Maley
9; John Madden
10; Michael Dunbar
11; Charlie Gorevin
Worth raising a glass to sometime today.
If only they knew how it would all turn out. Pensionerbhoy, a regular reader currently away for his holidays, will do an eye witness match report when he gets back.
Keep an eye out for events down Govan way this week. Its about to get very messy.
John Daly, Nicky Law, Cammy Bell have all joined the Second Division club, but will the club still be there in August? Time, of course , will tell. Lets hope Daly wins something with his new club, and a delighted fan throws him the flag of his country to parade around the ground with.
Actually , thats unfair. Sevco proved beyond any doubt they are a new, totally different club when they distanced themselves from the original clubs no Irish policy. After all, manager McCoist would have been aware he was Irish, just as he is fully aware of how many players he is allowed in his squad, and when he is allowed to play his new players.
Their internal investigation appears to have cleared the, which is what internal investigations do. If they really wanted to get to the bottom of the issue, they’d have rang the police.
Who are allegedly already looking into things anyway.
On Friday we showed legendary midfielder George Connelly making John Greig look stupid in an old Cup final before colour was invented. Another monchrome picture showed Charlie Nicholas before he made himself look stupid by signing for Arsenal.
Today, what has surprised this guy-and who is he?
Thers a new podcast on the front page, as myself, Desi Mond and Bedford Falls struggle desperately to find something intersting to say, so if you’ve got a spare hour, have a listen. Its great for getting the kids off to sleep.
has the plank in the grey suit and pink tie who made the hand gesture in the presentation box to the Celtic End been identified yet??? or has this also been over looked in all the papers…
Dom Sullivan: He looks surprised because he’s seen one of the opposition players from Dumbarton disappear into the primeval swamp which was the aptly-named Boghead.
we must start a campaign to get Neil Francis into the scottish football hall of fame just to annoy the sfa
Garngads own Dom Sullivan, he’s surprised because he’s playing at Firhill and there is big crowd by the looks of things. Either that or the fact that Thistle have kitted the ball boys out in flared track suits.
Kieran – fair point, noticed him as well when I was looking back at it on the TV. But then again I don’t want to go down the “Who are these people?” road, we’ll leave that to others. The guy is an arse but think of it this way; the way things are shaping up he will be an old and grey man by the time his team ever get that close to the Scottish Cup.
Dom Sullivan, in a game at Fir Hill by the looks of it.
Has he just clocked Alan Rough’s perm?
Is that a ruddy faced young Paul Sturrock in the background?
Haven’t read any papers since final,did any of them mention the celtic support applauding the hibs fans and players,or idiot who ran 50 yds across the south stand to barrack scott brown as he got the cup,did anyone notice the hun in a suit with his face tripping who didn’t applaud the presentation,and why did Mrs ogilvie dissapear after presenting the runners up medals was it going to soil her orange hands to shake celtic players hands
dominic sullivan my old pals cousin lol
Dom Sullivan looking a bit star struck as he’s just the bay city rollers in the crowd
John Daly, Nicky Law, Cammy Bell & Nicky Clark.
Remember these names, they will go far (all over the country in fact). Ruthlessly ambitious to the core. Surely every footballer worth his salt has always hankered to play in Scotland’s 3rd tier. I would also like to be in attendance at Arthur Daly’s 1st homecoming to Dublin after his signing. Maybe he could go visit the ground of Bohemians in his new rig-out?
I had the grave misfortune to read some of the comments posted in response to the Chinese Whispers of Celtic fans holding a banner with ‘Islam’ written on it. I know we have idiots too but some (a lot) of the bams who follow Sevco FC are beyond the pale. Even making up lies and convincing yourself to really believe them in order to justify their own stinking hatred. So what if the banner did say ‘Islam’ anyway? Floodlights on and swastikas at Parkhead in the 40s anyone?
Here’s looking forward to the new season. Have a good rest Lhads as we have 3 qualifying rounds which could make or break our entire season. Nevermind the endless tabloid/media list of practically our entire team moving on, I’m looking forward to a few faces in to freshen things up a bit.
has he seen someone having thrills at firhill
GARY HOOPER this is for you, stay with the CELTS and you will reach the PINNACLE of your career AND YOU ‘LL WIN MANY MORE TROPHIES, BUT IF YOU DECIDE TO LEAVE GO WITH OUR THANKS AND BLESSINGS, GARY N.B. YOU HAVE BEEN ADVISED, HAIL HAIL AND GOD BLESS …NEIL FRANCIS LENNON THE ONLY DECENT MANAGER IN SCOTTISH FOOTBALL,HA HA STUART MC CALL MANAGER OF THE YEAR, A DUMPLIN’ IF EVER THERE WAS ONE ,SCOTTISH FITBA’ IS STILL A BREEDING GROUND OF BIAS, BIGOTRY AND SECTARIANISM, ALL BECAUSE OF THE CHEATIN’ M.H.Bs @ibrox
It’s a streaker, don’t think it’s Firhill though. Dom Sullivan, loved the man, areal Tim.
I think it IS Firhill, check the advert behind Sullivan, it clearly says “Firhill for Thrillls”
I posted a reply but it seems to have drowned in the Irish Sea. I will certainly give you a report on my return and one on the game before that the 5-2. Remember, I was behind the curtain when it all kicked off. You do know Celtic got twenty two goals chalked off for, sorry, BY the referee. Rangers (it seems a century or more since that meant something) got ten penalties but our goalie was like a big forster faither and saved eight. Anyway, more on my return. For now, I am off to Ballymote tomorrow to visit Bro. Walfrid’s home and memorial and Thursday/Friday I will be in Sligo getting some first hand stories about the wonderful Sean Fallon. So be prepared for an onslaught of blogs on my return.
Meantime, thanks to all ETims for a brilliant season. Wee Lenny is very proud of you and is angry at those who claim you are just lucky. So you are, by the way. After all, you’ve got me.
Anyway, I have limited time on here and no access after tonight. The Rev. Sullivan is saying “You telt me a could leave my surplice in the dressing room and wear this shirt”. A reference to Dom’s original vocational plans.
Ralph, the Blinker craic was a beaut. What a script writer Desi is.
Well, I am off to raise a glass to the auld fellas. It will be mainly in black wi’ a big heid – no not Hooper.
Hic Hic tae ye all.