Champions League Matchday 5 thread

Saw Doctors play Celtic Park
Newsroom staff

TOP Irish band, The Saw Doctors, will be playing live at Celtic Park as part of the pre-match entertainment ahead of the UEFA Champions League clash between Celtic and Manchester United on Tuesday, November 21.

The Galway folk-rock group, famous for hits such as ‘N17’, ‘I Useta Lover’ and ‘To Win Just Once’, will play a special live set inside the stadium.

Supporters are being asked to play their part by arriving for next Tuesday’s game as early as possible to take in the pre-match entertainment.

Ill have more to say on this when time allows but I was chatting to a fellow Celtic supporter in work and we agreed that the atmosphere at this game will be unlike anything we have ever witnessed before. I hope everyone who is going gets there a good hour before kick-off and intimidates the fook out of the ManU players and support before, during and after the game. I dont want to jinx Celtic but I cant see ManU living with us in Glasgow hopefully itll be one to hold dear in my memory!

Yeah really looking forward to it - should be a cracking game and a cracking atmosphere. Big Jan came on for the Dutch today and setup the equaliser. He gave Rio and Wesley a torrid time last time and could be crucial in Glasgow.

Neville is fit for Saturday after initially the reports said he’d be out for next Tuesday. I actually think he’s an excellent player and would rather he was out. It gives Aiden another chance to test himself against the best after Neville got the better of him in Manchester.

Yeah Neville is a hugely important player for United. At Old Trafford Ferdinand and Brown were all over the place and Neville is by far their most composed defender. Without him we’d have a cracking chance. It will be far more difficult with him playing although I imagine he’ll get 60 minutes of either Aiden or Shaun and then 30 from the other to contend with next week which should test him to the limit.

Cracking commentary on these clips from Peter Martin.

Been watching Celtic videos on t’internet all weekend. Think I might have peaked too soon emotionally for this game.

I havent been looking forward to a game as much as this since the Ireland-San Marino game last week.

I see Caldwell is doubtful after jarring his knee on Saturday and despite what people who only saw him in the Benfica game may believe his absence would be a blow. But it wouldnt be insurmountable as Bobo and Mick played all last season together so they have a decent understanding. Also, someone with Bobos strength and physique should match up well with Rooney like Ive seen Richard Dunne and the great John Terry do in the recent past.

Miller missed out on Saturday with an ankle injury. I hope this was precautionary as we need his movement, pace and sheer dogged persistence and hes a good foil for big Jan. Speaking of which it was great to see the big man score on Saturday as since coming back hed hadnt looked as sharp as before and seemed to be carrying his ankle a bit.

Im expecting a stellar performance from Gravesen to make up for the goals he gave away in Manchester and Id like to see McGeady start ahead of Maloney also. I expect Strachan to start Shaun and I suppose I cant really quibble if he does but Aiden should definitely play some part. Lenny will have a huge role in the break up the play / continuity role win it, give it, set the tempo, get us going.

Where I think Celtic can hurt them is the Naka / Evra match up and then through our front two. Im very interested to see how United approach this. Sometimes in their games in England against Chelsea, Arsenal and Pool they play Fletcher to add solidity as they can be quite open if they have Giggs and Ronaldo wide, Scholes breaking forward and Saha and Rooney up top. All the talk suggests theyre going to go for it though which I wouldnt mind at all (see Millers 2nd goal against Benfica).

I dont fear anybody at Celtic Park and I certainly dont fear Manchester United. Bring it.

Miller would be a massive loss. Zurawski is struggling for form at the moment and while he is excellent cover to have I agree that Miller’s style of play is better suited to European football usually. There’s also the possibility that Jarosik might start up front. He’s been in good scoring form recently and he played at Old Trafford so Strachan might just give him the nod if Miller is injured to upset the United back 4 in the air.

I think Maloney will start on the left - unlucky for Aiden but I presume he’ll come on, especially if we need a goal. Other than that the team pretty much picks itself, with Bobo or Caldwell the only other doubt. (Oh I assume Wilson won’t be fit enough to start)

I expect





I reckon Miller will make it but Caldwell not.

i would start aiden ahead of maloney. don’t think strachan will either. surprised if wilson makes it as strachan doesn’t seem to play players if they are not 100% no matter how big the game (very much unlike mon)

Indeed, it’s the polar opposite to MON. I remember Sutton coming on at half time against Barca when he was clearly injured and Agathe seemed to play every single Old Firm game - even when he was in the middle of a 6 month injury.

That said Strachan brought big Jan back early against Hearts - though I imagine he’d be more willing to bring a striker back quickly than a defender, especially when he offers something different.

PP - Can you access the site in work now or are you gone already?

My guess on fitness levels looks like it was right.

Strachan: Gary is struggling and I doubt very much if he would be ready, said the Celtic boss. Balde would come in and he has a lot of experience.

He has seen a lot of games here and Im sure he will be an adequate replacement.

I hope that experience makes up for his lack of match practice.

Strachan added: Kenny trained this morning and hopefully he will be ready.

Looking forward to the game tomorrow night. Wish I was heading over to it, what time are you heading over at Rock?

Its going to be a tough match. Man Utd have improved a lot since september. We were far the better side that night and I believe if we can just cut out the stupid schoolboy errors we will win this time round.

Tommy knows his role in the team now and has settled into it very well. Fingers crossed King Kenny is fully fit. With Majic being off form (with his first touch and in front of goals) and Jarosik not imposing himself in a lot of the games he has played we need KK for the game 2mrw.He will run rings around the united defense.

I’d be confident of a win 2-1.

Where are freekickers going to watch the match?

I’ve a half nine flight to Edinburgh so should be in Glasgow for a brunch at noon or so.

Looking forward to it immensely now.

Individual errors have been responsible for five of the six goals we’ve conceded in Europe so far this year so that’s a huge thing to cut down on. Even back to previous seasons in Europe we seem to shoot ourselves in the foot lots so hopefully we can eradicate that tomorrow night.

Tommy is playing very well now, though Gordon hinted last week that he’d have to help Lennon more in future - and I’d imagine he had games like tomorrow’s in mind when he said that.

We’re all acknowledging the importance of Miller but I think Magic will do a decent job if selected. He put in a serious effort at home to Benfica and he was unlucky with one shot in particular against St Mirren. I read an interview with him translated from Polish last week (don’t think it was on tfk) where he conceded that he hadn’t been playing well so he accepted that he was a sub - but he wasn’t short on confidence and to be fair he has a superb ratio of converting chances since he’s come to Scotland.

I dont know what Im doing as of yet. All my superstitions (which I take quite seriously) were shattered by the last Benfica game. It was the first time Celtic have ever lost a midweek game when I was wearing my Celtic tie and that after watching it in the same pub, on the same screen, drinking the same drink and wearing the same suit as the 3-0 victory over them 2 weeks before that.

Its not an evening for Frasers as I want to hear the commentary and analysis clearly. Then theres also the work factor the earliest Ill get out is around 6.45. Let me know what youre thinking pagey.

Im absolutely gagging for this now. Let the songs commence:

Let the people sing their stories and their songs
The music of their native land
Lullabies and battle cries
Songs of hope and joy
Join us hand in hand

All across this ancient land
Throughout the test of time
It was music that kept our spirits free
Those songs of yours and mine

This land is your land
This land is my land
From the northern highlands
To the western islands
From the hills of Kerry
To the streets of Free Derry
Singing this land is made for you and me

Was on the offical site there and Kenny Miller is back to full fitness and has made himself available for selection.

Pagey - second time I’ve done this in succession but I’ve nowhere booked for tomorrow night. Do you know anywhere obscure that might still have vacancies? The whole city is booked up.

Its looking like:

Telfer; Balde; McManus; Naylor;
Naka; Gravesen; Lennon; Maloney;
Miller; Vennegoor of Hesselink;

Just thinking about it I reckon Vidic will pick up Jan for aerial deliveries seeing how Ferdinand has struggled with him in the past. I think Jan will cause both of them problems though.

Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink
Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink
Jan Vennegoor
Jan Vennegoor
Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink

Taken from HB:

if we win tomorrow and ben v cop is a draw = we are through

if we win tomorrow and ben win = we are through as long as we dont win
3-2, 4-3 etc.( if we do win 3-2 4-3 and ben win then only a defeat for us in copenhagen and a benfica win at old trafford will put us out CL and into uefa cup.)

if we win tomorrow and copenhagen win = i)we need a draw in copenhagen

if we draw tomorrow and ben v cop draw = i)a win in copenhagen guarantees qualification.ii) a draw in copenhagen would also likely get us through (as benfica would probably need to beat man u by two goals at old trafford unless their game with copenhagen was a very high scoring draw a one goal win could sneak it for benfica but only if ben v cop game was 3-3 or something like that!! - very unlikley) iii)a defeat in copenhagen means we will go head to head with copenhagen for cl place if benfica dont win at ot. iv) a defeat in copenhagen and a ben win at OT means we are head to head with cop for uefa cup place. for us to come out best on head to head a 2-1 defeat in copenhagen is enough.

if we draw tomorrow and ben win = i) a win in copenhagen would mean we will qualify as long as benfica dont win at old trafford.ii) a draw in copenhagen would mean we will qualify if benfica lose at old trafford.iii) a draw in copenhagen and a draw at old trafford would mean benfica would qualify if they have beaten copenhagen by more than 1 goal. but if they have only beaten cop by one then it is more likely celtic will qualify unless ben draw 3-3 at ot!! iv) if we lose to copenhagen then a benfica defeat at OT puts us in uefa cup. if benfica take something at old trafford then we will go head to head with copenhagen for the uefa cup place.

if we draw tomorrow and copenhagen win = i) a win or a draw in copenhagen qualifies us ii) a defeat in copenhagen means we will be head to head on goal difference with benfica for uefa cup place only if benfica win at OT.

if we lose tomorrow and benfica win = i)we need a win in copenhagen and hope ben dont win at OT.ii) a draw in copenhagen means we need to hope man u beat benfica and we sneak it on goal difference.iii) a defeat in copenhagen means we are last.

if we lose tomorrow and cop v ben is a draw = i) win in copenhagen qualifies us ii) a draw in copenhagen qualifies us if benfica dont win at OT iii) a draw in copenhagen and benfica win at OT means we are in uefa cup - iv) lose in copenhagen and ben lose at OT we are in uefa cup v) lose in copenhagen and ben win or draw in OT we will be last

if we lose tomorrow and cop win = i) win in copenhagen and will qualify ii) draw in copenhagen then we will be in uefa cup if ben dont win at ot. iii) if we draw in copenhagen and ben do win at OT then it will be between celtic and ben on GD for uefa cup place. iv) lose in copenhagen then we will be in uefa cup if ben dont win at OT. v) lose in copenhagen and ben win at OT we will be last.

I’ve just read through all that properly now. Irrespective of our result the most favourable outcome in Lisbon seems to be a draw - can make us qualify on the night and a guaranteed qualification in Copenhagen if we win, irrespstive of our result tomorrow.

After that there are positives and negatives about the other results but if Copenhagen win then we’ll know what we need to do in Denmark and not worry about Old Trafford. Having said that 2 home wins tomorrow and we could be through.

It’s my plane journey sorted anyway, working out the most favourable outcomes.