Celtic v Rangers

Who’s coming to Fraser’s tomorrow for this game?

Tommy Gravesen is highly doubtful for tomorrow and there are concens about the Beat too.

My team would be:




Vennegoor of Hesselink

I’ll be there and I expect Celtic to give them a hiding.


Telfer; McManus; O’Dea; Naylor;
Nakamura; Lennon; Sno; McGeady;
Beattie; Vennegoor of Hesselink;

Patrick Glenn
Sunday March 11, 2007


Serious climate change has taken place when both the combatants in an Old Firm match face a no-lose situation. In the renewal of the normally fevered fixture at Celtic Park this afternoon, defeat for either would merely offer temporary crowing rights to the fans of the other, having no material effect on the teams’ fortunes.
Celtic’s 19-point lead in the Premierleague with nine matches left makes their retention of the championship an inevitability, while even the most fastidious of Rangers supporters are not entitled to great expectations.

On an occasion renowned primarily for its preposterous seriousness, Gordon Strachan and Walter Smith may even have an opportunity to re-enact some of the fun they enjoyed when occupying opposing dugouts during their time in the Premiership.

The respective managers of Celtic and Rangers would have faced each other at least eight times when Smith was at Everton and Strachan in charge of Coventry and Southampton. No league titles were at stake then; instead, the perennial struggle of both in the lower reaches of England’s top division seemed to lend itself to a grisly humour.

‘My abiding memories of those matches against Walter and Archie Knox [Smith’s assistant] were of the laughs we would have,’ said Strachan. 'We would have an argument about which of us had the worst player on the pitch.

‘One time, I had to break up a row between the two of them. They were arguing over who was responsible for making a substitution that wasn’t working out. They couldn’t actually remember which of them had made the switch, so they were blaming each other.’

Smith’s arrival at Ibrox in January to replace the largely discredited Paul Le Guen means that, in less than two seasons at Celtic, Strachan will be in opposition to a third Rangers manager. He has lost only one of the seven matches he has played against the two previous incumbents - the first, at Ibrox in August 2005 - but admitted that he was most discomfited by the fixture when his club’s fiercest rivals were in the care of his close friend and former Aberdeen and Scotland teammate, Alex McLeish.

‘I was always uncomfortable when Alex was at Ibrox,’ said Strachan. ‘It’s unusual to have two people as close as we are in opposition. Whatever happened in the match, there was always going to be an element of sadness about the outcome. I couldn’t even bring myself to be all that happy about winning because I knew how painful defeat would be for him.’

However, Strachan would not allow emotions in turmoil to interfere with his dedication to the task of preparing his team for the most exacting match in the domestic calendar. If there is an additional complication to today’s assignment, it is that both teams are taking to the field in the immediate aftermath of disappointing experiences in Europe.

Celtic’s extra-time defeat by Milan at the San Siro in the last-16 tie in the Champions League on Wednesday could not be called glorious, but it was honourable. The level of performance achieved by the Scottish champions in holding the celebrated Italian team to a goalless draw over 90 minutes - matching the outcome of the first leg in Glasgow - exceeded the expectations of even their most optimistic fans. But for the decision by Austrian referee Konrad Plautz to deny them a penalty when Paolo Maldini handled Jiri Jarosik’s shot early on, they might have achieved a famous victory and passage to the quarter-finals.

There seems little doubt that, whatever depression may have settled on Strachan’s players, it would not be as deep as the trough into which those at Rangers would be plunged after their 1-1 draw at home to Osasuna in the first leg of their last-16 tie in the Uefa Cup.

Outplayed almost throughout, Smith’s team could have trailed by three or four goals by the time Brahim Hemdani scored the equaliser in stoppage time. With Rangers having a succession of away games - against Celtic today, Osasuna on Wednesday and Aberdeen, one of their main rivals for second place in the league, on Saturday - Smith conceded that a repeat of the poor form they showed against the Spanish team in any of those matches would probably lead to defeat.

In the circumstances, he is likely to be more anxious than Strachan about the first of the assignments. Celtic’s record of only one defeat in 29 league outings - to Hearts at Tynecastle as long ago as the first week in August - is formidable enough.

But, despite their improvement since the new manager’s arrival - five wins and a draw from six league outings - Rangers remain less convincing than rivals with a telling capacity for overcoming relatively moderate performances with a physical and mental vigour that has taken them to their elevated position.

‘They have a terrible fear of losing,’ is how Strachan describes a group of players who have become known for emerging victorious from seemingly irretrievable situations with late goals. It is a strength that Rangers may find impossible to resist.

You Celtic fans are very quiet, I didnt see the game myself. Any thoughts on the game i.e Celtics performance. I’m surprised nothing has been said or did you all drown your sorrows :drink: afterwards and were incapacitated?

I had about 10 pints before/during/after the game without eating anything and on the back of a 14 hour session the day before. I was properly fooked. Now after a 14 hour sleep (from 7pm last night until now) I’m ready to discuss it.

Football, like men, can be very cruel sometimes.

It is always sickening to lose a derby match.

It’s even more sickening to lose one undeservedly.


Losing yesterday when we already have the title wrapped up beats the mid 1990s when we’d thoroughly outplay them with Di Canio, Cadete and big Pierre and they’d score from a corner with a Richard Gough header or something to beat us.

That said I don’t want those cooonts to get back into the habit of doing that. In that respect it’s excellent there’s another game to come at their place before the end of the season so we can put them firmly back in their place. Frankly, they are absolute gash and it will be quite funny watching the Scottish media build them up again between now and then.

Some quick points:

  • McGeady was awesome yesterday.
  • Does one of our players have to get a leg amputated for us to get a pen against them?
  • We really need a striker to partner Jan. Two excellent touches from Jan put Miller more or less clean through and he badly fluffed both. Tries hard but nowhere near Celtic class.
  • Our response to going behind was what disappointed yesterday. Going 120 minutes in Milan probably affected that.
  • The first half performance was superb though.
  • Both Sno and Lennon had good games but they’re both quite similar. I think, along with a striker, our priority in the summer should be to sign a penetrating midfielder. Someone who offers a a threat driving into the box and will get us goals as well as being accomplished in his general passing, tackling, covering, etc like the 2 bhoys are.
  • Just to clarify; the huns are utter rubbish. They were only ever going to score from a set piece and their 1 up front with 9 on the edge of their box is getting tedious. I actually had more respect for them when they came to Celtic Park and attacked us. At least Hearts and Hibs have the balls to do that.
  • We’re going to win the double and they were celebrating like fook cos they closed the gap from 19 to 16 points. Even in the middle of their 9-in-row we had the odd win against them that hid the cracks. They have an awful lot of cracks.
  • Any thoughts from thefreekick csc bhoys who were at it or are you back yet?
  • Roll on the next one.

There was certainly drowning of sorrows which impacted on my ability to type for one Flano.

Game was massively disappointing. We played them off the park first half and should have been 3 up at the break easily. Miller missed a couple of great chances, McGeady was clearly fouled for a penalty (not awarded unsurprisingly), Sno had one very close effort, McGeady came close with a couple of long range shots. We dominated them utterly but couldn’t get the goal.

Second half they got a soft goal - it might have been considered a good goal by anybody other than Ugo Ehiogu, as it was it was clearly a fluke - and Boruc might have done better with it. From then on we were really poor. Didn’t create any chances and never looked like equalising. Disappointing because they are an awful side who did nothing all day but I think in the end the 120 minutes in Milan during the week didn’t help.

From reading some message boards it appears Lennon was sent off after the game for firing a water bottle at the Hun dugout. Also some reactions online are incredible but predictable. People giving McGeady 2/10 even though he ran the show for half the match and the continued non-appreciation of Vennegoor of Hesselink who created 3 chances for Miller (2 absoulute sitters) and won every header in the first half bar one. He tired later which was understandable given the 120 minutes he played on Wednesday night was his first full game in ages.

All in all it was horrible to lose to that shower but they celebrated like they’d won the league when we are miles ahead of them. It’ll be no harm at all to go out and hammer them at Ipox.

By the way I spoke to the piedpiper last night (he was at the game) and he was telling me that Naka was getting some abuse from the huns making plane gestures at him - a reference to Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

I’ve seen a photo of it now - absolute scumbags. Not just one or two pricks. No mention in the Scottish press of course and the cops don’t give a shit.

[img width=500 height=392]http://img66.imageshack.us/img66/2816/73546447xe1.jpg

Here’s the Lenny pictures. He fired a bottle at this guy in the stand who was abusing him but it hit the dug out - he wasn’t lashing out at anyone in the huns dug out. Fook that shit, he’s getting a roasting on various boards but I’m behind him 100% here. Celtic have as much coonts in their support as any other team and I expect it’s pretty tough to ignore one of your own ‘supporters’ firing abuse at you after losing a derby game. Not confirmed that he got a red anywhere yet.

[img width=342 height=480]http://i16.tinypic.com/4bp6bg8.jpg

[img width=500 height=362]http://i16.tinypic.com/4d3tnrb.jpg

just back now. all in all journey took nine hours. too long for comfort. i was very disappointed with the match. i thought celtic passed the ball well in the first half but didn’t look dangerous. In the second half they were very poor and created nothing. maybe the midweek match affected them but i thought the game was very flat and lacked the usual spark. with the exception of mcgeady i thought the performance was well below par. some of the behaviour from the rangers fans was disgusting. the picture that therock67 posted doesn’t give an accurate reflection as to the amount of fans that racially abused nakumara. i was shocked by their behaviour even though i went into the game expecting the worst from them. they were also doing the bouncy bouncy which was equally horrific.

I thought we created plenty of chances in the first half. Venngoor of Hesselink’s headed flick on to Miller put him through one and one but he made a mess of the lob attempt. Then from a throw or cross Jan flicked it on with his foot to Miller to shoot from 6 yards and he blazed it high and wide - that was an absolute gilt-edged chance. Then Sno had his shot from 6/7 yards that went just wide - Pressley was no more than inches from getting on the end of it either. Also Aiden had 2 decent shots from long range, one that whistled past the post on the volley with his left foot, the other with his right foot that was straighter at McGregor but he nearly made a mess of it. Naka’s free wasn’t a million miles away and we should have had a penalty for Ehiogu’s incompetent trip on Aiden. Can’t expect much more than that from 45 minutes.

The big problem was our second half obviously and I think we were still feeling the frustration at having had to chase a 0-1 against Milan during the week. Our passing went to shit and we just never did the things that we were having success with in the first half, namely passing the ball around.

Not surprised by the behaviour of their fans but it is disgusting.

That bouncy they do is truly despicable. Pure filth.

We need to make sure we batter them in the hun hole.

Yeah we passed it well in first half maybe i’m being overly critical of that period. second half our passing wendreally bad and this obviously affected everything else. a pity gravesen was out as he could have possibly changed the tempo of the game if we had the option to bring him on.

the fact that they did they engage in these disgusting racists and sectarian acts doesn’t surprise me. the amount of their ‘fans’ that did it though was remarkable.

Banners from the Celtic v Huns game yesterday:

[img width=500 height=375]http://img144.imageshack.us/img144/4838/js2vhunsqj8.jpg

[img width=500 height=332]http://img181.imageshack.us/img181/6632/jinkyvhunsoh4.jpg

[img width=500 height=505]http://img257.imageshack.us/img257/4112/steinvhunsmk3.jpg

[img width=500 height=332]http://img152.imageshack.us/img152/5886/doylevhunsfo6.jpg

[img width=500 height=316]http://img340.imageshack.us/img340/4955/evolutionvhunsoo6.jpg

[img width=500 height=375]http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/1345/36268164mw2.jpg

[img width=500 height=375]http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i201/jfkbhoy/celticvshuns013.jpg

[img width=500 height=375]http://i71.photobucket.com/albums/i150/paddyoshea/DSCN5232.jpg

[img width=500 height=421]http://img239.imageshack.us/img239/8520/showletteryo2.jpg

[img width=500 height=351]http://i15.tinypic.com/44jqc20.jpg

Those banners are class.

Couldn’t make out the one under Jock for ages but it seems to be Johnny Doyle.

rocko, pagey, piedpiper, do you know much about him? Didn’t he die shortly after scoring against Madrid in the European Cup? Some accident at home or something?