Europa League INFO..Draw,Fixtures,Thoughts………

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Friday lunchtime I was sitting streaming the draw and as each pot emptied our opponents for this years Europa league campaign emerged,first Ajax then Fenerbahçe then Molde,the Norwegian side shouldnt pose Celtic any problems home and away and we would expect to get the full 6 points from the games,Fenerbahçe we have never met in fact we’ve not played any turkish opposition the 2 games against one of the toughest teams in the draw will be a real test…..

Il be honest right now and say they will be group winners,anything we can take from them will be a huge bonus,where our European adventure will be decided will be the games against Ajax home and away ,in recent games in the champions league we have played 4 lost 2 and won 2 ,and all but one-off the games were close,depending on other results and if 2nd spot is our realistic goal 9 points should be enough to secure qualification,of course id like to win the group but getting through should be the clubs priority…


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Make no bones about it this is the toughest group in the tournament and Celtic football club are no stranger to these draws,ive championed the Europa league for several yrs now and ive always said its our level,in the current climate we can’t compete in the champions league against teams with multi million pound investment,of course I understand Roy Keane’s comments and fans on social media saying we should be in the champions league …

If we had the resources then yes of course who wouldn’t want to be in with the cream of europe ,but fans ,supporters x players all need to realise Celtic are a big club and have the most passionate fans in the world we havent changed in the last 10 yrs whats changed and moved forward are the Chelsea’s,Real Madrids ,and Barcelona’s and the billionaires who fund them ,id rather play in a competition where were relatively on par as a club with our opponents ….

It’s not always about the money,had we won the uefa cup in 2003 that would have been seen as a fine achievement in the 2nd competition so why since reforming to the Europa league has this competition been so badly received by fans,look football is about opinions it’s not going to be for everyone ,but at the end of the day we go again ,and I for one am looking forward to it HH


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Club by Club

Amsterdamsche Football Club Ajax, also AFC Ajax or Ajax Amsterdam, is a Dutch professional football club based in Amsterdam. Historically, Ajax is the most successful club in the Netherlands, with 33 Eredivisie titles and 18 KNVB Cups.Celtic have played the dutch outfit on several occasions in the champions league last few results below….


2013/2014
Wed 06 Nov     Ajax Amsterdam 1 – 0 Celtic     Champions League

Tue 22 Oct       Celtic 2 – 1 Ajax Amsterdam     Champions League

2001/2002
Wed 22 Aug      Celtic 0 – 1 Ajax Amsterdam     Champions League
Celtic won 3-2 on aggregate

Wed 08 Aug      Ajax Amsterdam 1 – 3 Celtic     Champions League


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Fenerbahçe

fenerbache squad 2015


Fenerbahçe Spor Kulübü is a Turkish professional football club based in the district of Kadıköy, Istanbul, and part of the larger Fenerbahçe multisports club,Celtic have never met turkish opposition so its a bit of history in the making the turkish outfit have a reputation of hard tackling and quick build ups,also the turkish fans are feverish and frenzy like so it should be quite a experience for the hoops….



 Molde 

Molde FK


Molde Fotballklubb is a football club from Molde, Norway, that currently plays in the Tippeligaen, the Norwegian top division. Founded on 19 June 1911, Molde was originally known as International Celtic have also never played molde but of course have met norwegian teams before such as Rosenborg in competitive european competition ,seen as the weakest team in the group celtic should see both the games home and away as ones they can win …..



Live UEFA Europa League Football on TV matches can be seen exclusively on BT Sport in the UK. BT Sport will show every match live from the 2015/2016 UEFA Europa League including the 2016 UEFA Europa League Final live on TV from St. Jakob-Park, Basel.

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2016/competitionformat/
(COMPETITION FORMAT) Click Link


DRAW AND FIXTURES IN FULL

Group A: Ajax, Celtic, Fenerbahce, Molde

Group B: Rubin Kazan, Liverpool, Bordeaux, Sion

Group C: Borussia Dortmund, Paok Thessaloniki, Krasnodar, Gabala

Group D: Napoli, Club Brugge, Legia Warsaw, Midtjyllland

Group E: Villarreal, Viktoria Plzen, Rapid Vienna, Dinamo Minsk

Group F: Marseille, Braga, Slovan Liberec, Groningen

Group G: Dnipropetrovsk, Lazio, St-Etienne, Rosenborg

Group H: Sporting Lisbon, Besiktas, Lokomotiv Moscow, Skenderbeu

Group I: Basel, Fiorentina, Lech Poznan, Belenenses

Group J: Tottenham Hotspur, Anderlecht, Monaco, Qarabag

Group K: Schalke, Apoel Nicosia, Sparta Prague, Asteras Tripolis

Group L: Athletic Bilbao, AZ Alkmaar, Augsburg, Partizan Belgrade


Matchday One
Ajax (A)
Thursday, September 17
6pm

Matchday Two
Fenerbahce (H)
Thursday, October 1
8:05pm

Matchday Three
Molde (A)
Thursday, October 22
8:05pm

Matchday Four
Molde (H)
Thursday, November 5
6pm

Matchday Five
Ajax (H)
Thursday, November 26
8:05pm

Matchday Six
Fenerbahce (A)
Thursday, December 10
6pm

HH AND ENJOY THE SEASON !!!!!!!!!!!..

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Done again by bad refereeing

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Never been a fan off the champions league and I don’t mind losing a game. But a good biton goal disallowed for nothing Rosenberg handled the ball and we were punished for it, the Serbian official s can sleep easy tonight knowing they sold out , why bother having officials behind the goal if they turn a blind eye to blatant cheating …

I’m fuming here at half time Celtic again get the wrong end of the stick , it’s happened so many times in this competition we can remember games like juventus and inter Milan away when decisions like these went against us it’s no coincidence it’s just dam right wrong , there’s no easy answer to stamping it out it’s just part and parcel of the game , but we can’t help but feel robbed , if we lose without the cheating it’s fine but to get decisions like that just take the wind out yet sail , 2 nd half just starting let’s see if we get. A fair crack of the whip

ok just watched a dull half from the hoops il start by saying that end of half decision killed it if yer a fan watching it would be easy to have a go at the team but that decision was diabolical, if the goal stood they would have came out second half fired up ,Europa league is our level , the board don’t want to spend big money to bring in. 5 million. Pound players and it’s understandable in the Scottish climates ., I’m not disappointed. Tonight il take Europa league football , what I’m disappointed in is the decisions off inept officials screwing us over , it’s not sour grapes it was plain see tonight that we should have had a legitimate goal hh

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Listen To Everone Trust No One …………….

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In my 40 odd yrs I’ve come across all sorts off people , some I can trust some I can take with a pinch of salt, some who are downright crooked , so believe me when I tell you I’ve learned in this life listen to everyone but trust no one , information is a commodity It’s almost as valuable as hard cash if used in the proper way , anyway let’s get to the point of the post , since 2012 when Rangers 1873-2012 died , we’ve all been told that the pariah the Phoenix club sevco wouldn’t last and they’d administrate and liquidate like big brother Rangers ,but here we sit mid 2015 and they still exist…..

Since David king took over the silence from ibrox and Edmondson drive has been deafening in the near 9 months since he stepped into the hot seat , main stream media the sfa, Hmrc have all went a bit quiet, we could ask why is that , I’m not big on conspiracys but being a Celtic fan considering all that went on at ibrox under tax dodger David Murray for 20 yrs it is rather fishy , Dave king used tax avoidance in South Africa was guilty of said crime yet still somehow in Scotland’s crazy football world is allowed to run a football club , not just any football club but the one guilty of the single most hanus crime in world football to date..

140 million pound of tax avoidance countless creditors left out off pocket , small businesses crippled ,and with not so much as an apology from the dead Rangers fc, in recent yrs since starting the blog I’ve come across a few people of the blue persuasion , not just friends who supported Rangers but intelligent business people who know what’s really going on at that football club , like I said before information is a commodity if used properly it can be very destructive…


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I’m not claiming to have some big bombshell news that will shock the country ,but I am saying the long-awaited Armageddon is getting closer , my sources tell me sevco are again living outside there means , we all know Mike Ashley has them over a barrel with the retail and the 5 million loan but there hemorrhaging cash again , you’d think they would learn the facts are their stadium is falling apart they can’t afford to repair it and the running costs of the football club in the championship are raising the debt once again….

The facts are it would take 25 million now just to get all that into line , they have been playing the long game and with the sfa and msm s help in recent months it seems to be working , but how many times can they expect to wipe the shit off their shoes ,there comes a point in time to put the old dog down even the people covering up the sorry mess since 2012 must see it …..


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Quickfire Hoops Made To Pay By X Celt Berget…

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Squeaky bum comes to mind after tonight’s result , let me firstly say what a real good game of champions league football witnessed tonight, at 2-0 after goals from Griffiths and Biton it was looking so good we controlled the first half and Malmö weren’t that much of a threat in the opening exchanges , but like we all know things can turn on a sixpence in this competition and the Swedish outfit certainly played better second half , it’s ironic that an old Celtic player would come back to haunt us Berget would score midway through the 2nd half with a wonderful strike and as Celtic battled away eventually scoring a 3 rd from man of the match for me Griffiths , Berget would again score from close range inside stoppage time to make it 3-2 to Celtic….


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So hence the squeaky bum comment, next Tuesday night in Sweden Celtic will have a 1 goal lead to defend , thing is should we defend or attack , the game is now on a knife-edge and will hopefully be as good a tie as tonight’s , Malmö will feel confident that they can win the game , Celtic also can take heart from some decent away performances in Europe recent times , at 3-1….. I would have said I was confident we could finish the job, now alough we have a one goal lead its nervous times ahead , we have the comfort of knowing no matter what we will still be playing European football but I’m sure Ronnie and the Bhoys want a crack at Europe’s elite in the champions league….

The parachute of Europa league football group stages is comforting but there’s big money to be made first ,and if Celtic can come through this tie on Tuesday night we can all look forward to the draw,maybe the gods will be kind and put us in a group that’s not the so-called group of death for once,whatever happens these games are to be enjoyed the fans were again on top form tonight ,ok the scoreline would suggest there wasnt much between the teams but at 3-1 and the game going into added time Celtic were good for that result had it happened Berget and Malmo had other ideas and im sure they will be mighty releaved to get such a late goal ,a lot of positives can be taken from the game we won and Griffiths scored another 2 goals …


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We played some fine attacking football and down both flanks we ran them a bit ragged ,we can definitely breech their goal next week ,the work that will need to be done between now and then will be with our defence for some reason were leaking to many goals and its an area we had been strong in,for whatever reason Ronnie and the coaches will have to put a lid on the problems and fast,Armstrong and Lustig both got injures in the game and it was sad to see the big swede Lustig so upset,he obviously knew another spell on the sidelines was inevitable,hopefully both players will be ok soon ,we go to tannadice on Saturday for a lunchtime game against Dundee utd before flying out for the second leg in Sweden Tuesday 25th August ,ALL THE BEST BHOYS HH


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Official Match Report

UEFA Champions League play-off first-leg
Celtic Park, Glasgow
Wednesday, August 19, 2015

CELTIC…3
(Griffiths 3, 62, Bitton 10)
MALMO FF…2
(Berget 52, 90 +4)

LEIGH Griffiths bagged a brilliant brace as Celtic edged Malmo 3-2 in Paradise – but they were only seconds away from taking a more commanding lead into next week’s UEFA Champions League play-off second-leg.Griffiths showed admirable composure to open the scoring from Stefan Johansen’s pass in the third minute.Nir Bitton headed home from Johansen’s corner seven minutes later as the Hoops ran the visitors ragged in the opening stages. The Bhoys could have added to their tally as they dominated the remainder of the first half, but their lead was reduced early after the restart as former Celt Jo-Inge Berget blasted in from an acute angle.

But Griffiths was not to be denied and his opportunist header in the 62nd minute put Ronny Deila’s side back in pole position. And it looked as though they would take a two-goal lead back to Sweden for the second-leg until Berget struck at the death, smashing home after a corner had ricocheted around the box. James Forrest replaced Gary Mackay-Steven on the right-wing as the manager made one change to the side that defeated Inverness Caley Thistle 4-2 in the league on Saturday.Amid a thunderous din, Celtic immediately took the game to the visitors, with Forrest earning a corner inside the first 30 seconds. Johansen’s flighted delivery was won by Virgil van Dijk, with the loose ball almost falling for Griffiths.

The home side’s purposeful start was rewarded within the third minute as Griffiths made the breakthrough. Stuart Armstrong drove inside before finding Johansen who delivered a precise first-time pass into Griffiths. He remained calm, coolly rolling the ball under the advancing Johan Wiland.Paradise duly erupted and they soon had further reason to celebrate as the Hoops quickly doubled their advantage. Armstrong reached the byline and his cross was headed behind. From Johansen’s resultant corner, Bitton planted a header beyond Wiland to spark delirium in the stands.Malmo were reeling and Celtic were rampant. Only a low save from Wiland prevented Johansen making it 3-0 after Griffiths had teed-up the Norwegian in the box in the 13th minute.

The visitors were struggling to stem the tide as Ronny Deila’s side attacked at a furious pace and pressed relentlessly without the ball. Another incisive break from the lively Forrest presented Griffiths with a sight of goal, the striker flashing a shot into the side-netting.Midway through the half Malmo mustered their first effort on goal as Vladimir Rodic was first to a loose ball on the edge of the box, with Craig Gordon turning the winger’s shot past the post.A sublime pass from Bitton had the away side quickly on the back foot again, however. Mikael Lustig scampered on to the Israeli internationalist’s through ball but his fizzing cutback had no takers in the middle.

Are Hareide’s side were growing into the contest, but ambitious long-range shots from Nikola Djurdic and Rodic and a deflected shot from Jo-Inge Berget were all they had to show for their efforts.At the other end, the Bhoys always looked more menacing. Armstrong sent a rasping drive inches beyond the far post, before a sweeping move almost saw Forrest reach Griffiths’ return pass.Erdal Rakip blazed over for Malmo as they searched in vain for some kind of reply prior to the interval.

It had been a fantastic first half from the Scottish champions and they immediately sought about reasserting their dominance after the restart but a quick breakaway saw them undone.From a Celtic corner, the ball was knocked clear and when Magnus Eikrem’s missed everyone in the middle, it fell for Berget, and he lashed a powerful drive from an acute angle beyond Gordon.Filled with renewed belief, Malmo poured forward and almost grabbed a leveller as Djurdic’s thumping drive brought out a superb save from Gordon.However, the Hoops soon recovered from that setback and were back in full stride, with Griffiths smashing a shot off a defender after the ball had dropped for him at the back post.

And less than 10 minutes later, the two-goal cushion was restored. Lustig’s searching centre was only partially cleared and Griffiths displayed brilliant determination to loop a header over Wiland.As Celtic defended resolutely, it looked as though they would head to Malmo in complete control of the tie, a Djurdic shot that flew wide their only meaningful attempt as the clock ticked down.However, right at the death, Berget reacted quickest as a corner was knocked down by substitute Felipe Carvalho to stun Paradise and leave the Hoops with only a slender one-goal lead and plenty of work to do to keep their UEFA Champions League dream alive.

CELTIC (4-2-3-1): Gordon; Lustig (Ambrose 80) Boyata, Van Dijk, Izaguirre; Brown, Bitton; Forrest, Johansen, Armstrong (Mackay-Steven 63); Griffiths (Ciftci 73)
Not Used: Bailly, Commons, Rogic, Mulgrew

MALMO FF (4-4-2) Wiland; Tinnerholm, Arnason, Bengtsson, Yotun; Rodic, Lewicki, Rakip (Sana 81) Berget; Eikrem (Carvalho 72) Djurdic
Not Used: Anderson, Konate, Molnis, Mehmeti, Vindheim


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UPCOMING FIXTURES

SAT 22 AUG 2015 –
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP
Dundee UtdvCeltic 12:00

TUE 25 AUG 2015
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
Malmö FFvCeltic
(agg 2 – 3) 19:45

SAT 29 AUG 2015
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP
CelticvSt Johnstone 15:00

SAT 12 SEP 2015
SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP
AberdeenvCeltic 12:30


 

 


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So What a Draw Is It as Big a Deal As The Media Would Make You Believe 5 In a Row Is Inevitable!!


Kilmarnocks dry arid plastic surface was a nightmare to play on , sticky and no pace on the ball it contributed to a slow-paced but nevertheless entertaining game , with the highlight being nir Bitons. 25 yard screamer , Leigh Griffiths got the team off to the perfect start early in the first exchanges, a pin-pointpass from Kris commons found Griffiths through on the goalkeeper and he finished the chance with ease , it was a great start for the parkhead club……..

The travelling support were making fantastic noise , a few green flares were let off by the hoops fans and no doubt there will be repercussions about that , Kilmarnock had come into this game bottom of the division after 2 defeats and 6 goals conceded , but they did create a few chances and Magennis scored there equaliser just before the half time break, Celtic would restore the lead though with a wonder goal from nir biton , he’s fast becoming my favourite player and one I’ve mentioned in my posts since arriving at the football club……..

Celtic at 2-1 should have killed the game off but kilmarnock goalkeeper McDonald in the goal was on fine form pulling off several fine saves and the hoops would be punished late on when izziguirre conceded a late penalty that higgingbottom converted to make the score 2-2 and see the hoops drop there first points of the new season…………..


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OFFICIAL MATCH REPORT

Ladbrokes Premiership
Rugby Park, Kilmarnock
Wednesday, August 12, 2015

KILMARNOCK…2
(Magennis 44, Higginbotham 87’, [penalty]
CELTIC…2
(Griffiths 2, Bitton 55)

A LATE penalty for Kilmarnock saw Celtic held to a 2-2 draw at Rugby Park tonight (Wednesday), ending the Hoops’ winning run to the start of the 2015/16 Premiership season.Ronny Deila’s side dominated large parts of the match and took the lead inside two minutes through Leigh Griffiths but they were pegged back just before half-time when Josh Magennis pounced to convert a low cross from Darryl Westlake.

A wonder goal from Nir Bitton 10 minutes into the second-half put the Hoops deservedly back in front and they went on to continue to batter away at the hosts’ goal in search of a third, but Emilio Izaguirre’s challenge on Westlake with four minutes left saw the referee point to the spot, and striker Kallum Higginbotham earned his side a draw with the penalty-kick.

Three changes were made to the side following Sunday’s 2-0 win over Partick Thistle with Saidy janko starting hsi first game for the Bhoys in place of Mikael Lustig and Efe Ambrose and James Forrest coming in for Dedryck Boyata and Stuart Armstrong.The tinkered line-up made no difference to the team’s approach from that dominant win over the jags, however, as Ronny Deila’s men started the match a bang, scoring inside the first two minutes.

The Celts won a free-kick on the right touchline just inside Killie’s half, which was taken quickly by Kris Commons after he spotted the run of Griffiths towards the box. The striker allowed the ball to drop over his shoulder and he killed it with his first touch before steadying himself and slotting a low shot beyond MacDonald to give the champions the lead.

The pressure didn’t stop there as the imperious Hoops went on the hunt for a second through a period of fast passing and slick play for the first 15 minutes. Commons, Tom Rogic and Forrest were all denied during that spell by good saves from MacDonald as the Hoops hammered the Killie goal with a barrage of shots and attacks.

The home side managed to survive the onslaught and mounted a brief attack of their own when Greg Kiltie dispossessed Rogic inside Celtic’s half and took a shot at goal but his effort was rushed and well wide of Gordon’s net.Normal order resumed thereafter as the Bhoys continued to play at a high tempo. Forrest, Rogic and Commons all looked in a threatening mood for the first half-hour, backed up by Stefan Johansen and Nir Bitton’s solidity in midfield, but the game came to an early finish for last week’s goal-scorer, Commons, as he was replaced by Gary Mackay-Steven after picking up a knock.

Killie then had a golden chance to equalise when Josh Magennis beat the offside trap to gather a ball over the Hoops defence on 35 minutes but he blazed his shot over the bar under little pressure.Lee Ashcroft then saw Craig Gordon save his point-blank header on the line after meeting a cross-in from a free-kick on the right but the Celtic keeper could do nothing minutes later stop the hosts’ surprise equaliser on the stroke of half-time.

Killie had just survived a goal-line scramble in their own penalty area before they broke up the pitch down the Bhoys left side. Westlake then crossed into the box for Magennis, who ghosted to the front post and curled a first-time shot beyond Gordon.It was a bitter blow for the Celts to take, given their utter control of proceedings up until that point, and saw the teams go in at the break level.

A lull lay over the Celtic support at the start of the second-half, still stunned from Killie’s shock equaliser but they didn’t have long to wait to have something to sing about.The Bhoys came out fired up and kept the ball well and won a free-kick 25 yards out after Mackay-Steven was clattered to the ground on the edge of the area.Van Dijk’s shot from the seti-piece clipped the wall and was cleared but the Celts were signalling their intent and went close again when a brilliant burst of pace from Forrest saw him beat two challenges and provide a cut-back for Griffiths but the striker couldn’t connect properly.

Bitton made no mistake with his own connection seconds later, however, when he powered the Celts back into the lead with an outrageous long-range shot on 55 minutes.The midfielder picked up the ball from Rogic 25 yards out after the Australian did well to break forward and shrug off a challenge near the box. The Israeli took one touch to get it out of his feet before coolly smashing a shot beyond MacDonald to put Celtic rightly back in front.



It was a remarkable goal, which MacDonald could do nothing about, despite being the man that had kept his side in the tie up until that point.Celtic then began to turn the screw with Griffiths going close with an angled shot from the edge of the box but Killie looked dangerous on the break and Gordon was forced to tip over a shot from Rory McKenzie.

Just like the first-half, the home side began to rally as the clock ticked down to the end of the half and the Celts had Gordon to thank again when he saved a strong free kick from second-half substitute Arron Splaine before tipping Mark O’Hara’s header wide.

Horror then struck for Ronny Deila’s side when Emilio Izaguirre was penalised for a challenge on Westlake inside the box with four minutes left and a penalty was awarded.Kallum Higginbotham stepped up for the spot-kick and calmly chipped it into the centre of the goal, with Gordon diving to his right.Celtic tried their best to claim a late winner and went close when Griffiths did well to connect with Janko’s cross from the right but his header went wide of MacDonald’s goal, giving Killie a share of the points.


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CELTIC (4-2-3-1) Gordon; Janko, Ambrose, van Dijk, Izaguirre; Bitton (McGregor 85’), Johansen; Commons (Mackay-Steven 29’), Rogic, Forrest (Mulgrew 60); Griffiths
Not used: Bailly, Fisher, Henderson, Stokes

KILMARNOCK (4-2-3-1) MacDonald; Smith, Hamill, Connolly, McKenzie, Robinson (Splaine 66’), Higginbotham, Westlake, Ashcroft (O’Hara 43’), Kiltie (McLean 90’), Magennis
Not used: Davies, Barbour, Hodge, Hawkshaw,


Celtic v Inverness CT
Ladbrokes Premiership
15th August 2015
Kick Off 15:00

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Brilliant Pieces Of Skill Earned Us 3 Points At Firhill …………..

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Another fine win on Sunday afternoon seen us move top of the division after 2 games ,we simply blew Partick Thistle away ,especially in the first half ,some of the showboating was class though and my favourite was Virgil Van Dyks below in the video ,what a lovely piece of skill from a defender ,the big guy is playing some fine football and no doubt the wolves will be at the door ,but if we can hold onto him for this season at least him and Boyata whos looking better with every game can forge a good solid partnership……



Also the return of forgotten man Rogic to the team has to be seen as a bonus especially if he can play like that every week and remain injury free,that’s whats plagued his celtic career ,his goal was simply terrific and so well executed ,its like having a new player and Ronnie was raving about the lad after the game so we may see more of the socerooo……………………….(see video below)…..



Chris Commons also scored with a neat chip ,to be honest in that first half Celtic played some of the best football ive seen since Ronnie deila arrived at the club ,they did ease up in the second half but I think the team knew that there was only going to be one outcome,it’s no disrespect to Partick Thistle but its plain to see Celtic are a step above all the other clubs in the premier league…….

John Collins was slated by Derek Mcinnes the other night for stating this very fact and that in Europe also Celtic stand alone in helping the coefficient,harsh truths told by the Celtic assistant coach but true ……………………………………………………………..


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We have Kilmarnock up next on Wednesday…………..
Kilmarnock v Celtic
Ladbrokes Premiership
12th August 2015
Kick Off 19:45


Bottom of the league at the moment and im sure they will want to rectify that as soon as possible,the games on bt sports but as usual a big traveling support will head to rugby park,with Armstrong picking up an injury and broonie a bit sore from the European endeavours we may see some changes again in the line up,we should be able to keep the momentum up in the next 2 games before the visit of Malmo in the champions league qualifier,I think a familiar 2-0 score line on wed night will be the outcome…against Killie,then we take on Inverness Caley on Saturday at paradise………………………………


PAISLEY, SCOTLAND - JULY 01: Tomas Rogic of Celtic in action against Den Bosch  during the Pre Season Friendly between Celtic and De Bosch at St Mirren Park on  July 01, 2015 in Paisley, Scotland.  (Photo by Jeff Holmes/Getty Images)

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The the new android and iOS Celtic news now apps available to download now

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http://www.celticnewsnow.com/news/help-the-celticnewsnow-app-reach-the-top-of-the-ios-charts/121749/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=FacebookFeed



With  the new season upon us I’d like to recommend the new Celtic news now apps available on iOS and android , use the links above to download today a great companion to keep you directly in touch with all things Celtic hh and enjoy another fine season ..

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Aggregate 1-0 Scoreline Sees Ronnies-Bhoys Through ..Who’s Next !..


 

A professional performance seen Celtic go through to the knockout phase of the champions league tonight in Baku, on an arid dry and sandy pitch both teams struggled to keep the ball down and play good football , but the game despite this was quite entertaining ,the only down side being the Swedish referees unwillingness to give Celtic anything foul related…

The tie was never going to be easy and the pitch was the main taking point in the days leading up to the game,the heat in Baku tonight would have been a big factor as well for the hoops but they seemed to handle it well , a water break in each half was a welcome break in play to allow the players to rehydrate,we never really looked in danger of conceding tonight , only on one occasion did qarabag test Craig Gordon and as usual on night s like these the big fella produced a great save ….


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Boyata looked more comfortable tonight and as he gets more game time his passing will
improve , against Ross county on Saturday he was guilty of giving the ball away several times but tonight was better,Izzy , Van Dyk , and Lustig were solid and the whole back line played well as a unit , Scott Brown and Stefan Johansen were terrific in midfield and Biton has been impressing me since establishing himself in the team ….

We will be seeded in the draw. Which will help , Ronnie Deila will be pleased with the effort off his team tonight in the heat on a tough pitch , one step closer to the champions league Celtic can look forward to the draw and the next challenge , Ciftci worked hard tonight and getting that first goal will help, I’ve seen enough to suggest he will come good….


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Teams Celtic could face in play-off

Maccabi Tel Aviv (Israel)
Partizan Belgrade (Serbia)
Malmo (Sweden)
Skenderbeu Korce (Albania)
Astana (Kazakhstan)


 

NEXT MATCH

Partick Thistle v Celtic
Ladbrokes Premiership
9th August 2015
Kick Off 12:30


 

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OFFICIAL MATCH REPORT

UEFA Champions League
Third round qualifier, second-leg
Tofiq Bahramov Stadium
Wednesday, August 5, 2015

CELTIC…0

(Celtic 1-0 on aggregate)

FK QARABAG…0

CELTIC progressed to the play-off stages of the UEFA Champions League qualifiersthanks to a nail-biting 0-0 draw with FK Qarabag in Azerbaijan.The Bhoys’ 1-0 aggregate lead from last week’s first-leg of their third round qualifier, courtesy of  Dedryck Boyata’s late header, proved to be enough for Ronny Deila’s men, who battled the heat, a difficult playing surface and a well-drilled home team to make it to the final hurdle before the group stages.

Despite brining only a limited number of supporters with them to Paradise last week, the home side managed to pack out the ground for the fixture with fans waving flags, beating drums and belting out deafening chants to create an electric atmosphere before kick-off.
Fears over the playability of the surface subsided on the day of the game as the pitch was heavily watered, as did concerns over the scorching heat, which was cooled somewhat by a mild wind throughout the ground.

Ronny Deila opted to field the same side which recorded the 1-0 win over Qarabag last week but tweaked the formation to put Nir Bitton in front of the defence and a flat four across midfield.That gave Nadir Ciftci the sole responsibility of leading the line up front and the Bhoys tried to find him early with a string of cross-field passes but they couldn’t find the target.

Qarabag were the first to threaten out of both teams when they won a corner on 10 minutes but the ball-in rattled off a home team player’s hand in the box, stopping the danger for Celtic. A second well-worked corner from the hosts then allowed Richard Almeida to line up a shot in the box but he sliced his effort wide and the Hoops survived.
Tenacious work from Stuart Armstrong then won the ball for Celtic deep in Qarabag’s half and he skipped past two challenges to work his way into the box but the home side defence hooked the attacker’s cut-back clear midway through the first-half.

The Celts began to find their rhythm after that and looked to be only one pass away from tearing open the home side’s defence, with Gary Mackay-Steven leading the charge, but a quick counter-attack from Qarabag allowed Almeida to fire off the best chance of the half with a cracking shot from 20 yards. Hoops goalie Craig Gordon was equal to the effort, however, and pulled out a world class one-handed save to palm the strike wide of goal on the half-hour mark.

Alarm bells went off again for the Bhoys when a clever Qarabag pass made it through to Dani Quintana in the box but he slipped and the Celts defence lashed the ball out for a corner, which was scrambled clear.It was then the Celts’ turn to attack when they won their first corner five minutes before half-time but the home defence managed to clear. Bitton then almost found the opener of the evening with an audacious shot from just inside the home side’s half after spotting Ibrahim Sehic off his line but the keeper recovered and saved his team’s blushes before the interval.

Play retained the look of the first-half after the restart with Celtic trying to hold onto the ball and hit on the break and Qarabag keen to press high up the pitch.The home side created two good chances from corners inside the first 10 minutes of the second-half with a shot from Badavi Huseynov which went well over and a first-time effort from Rashad Sadygov from 20 yards, which also sailed over Gordon’s cross bar.

The Celtic goalie then made his first save of the second-half to gather El Jadeyaoui’s week shot from the right flank and the catch allowed Celtic to take a better grip of the game and push further up the pitch.The Bhoys began to pass their way through the Qarabag midfield but the hosts defence was resolute in the face of the Celts attacks.Qarabag were dangerous on the break as well and Celtic’s push forward left gaps at the back.

El Jadeyaoui looked to capitalise on that after 65 minutes when he found the ball at his feet in the area at the back post but the Bhoys blocked his shot well and cleared.Ronny Deila then introduced Leigh Griffiths to the play in place of Ciftci as the champions sought to stretch the home side’s tiring defence. Qarabag also introduced fresh legs upfront as the game approached a nervy conclusion but it was Celtic who looked on top as the clock ticked down and they almost stole the win in the dying minutes through Stefan Johansen.

Armstrong’s relentless hounding of the Qarabag defence won the ball for Celtic 18 yards out and he slipped Johansen in with a great pass but the Norwegian’s first-time shot screwed agonisingly wide of Sehic’s left post.Substitutes Kris Commons and James Forrest were deployed to keep the Bhoys up the pitch and the Scotland winger could have calmed the nerves with just minutes left when he squirmed past three challenges and into the box but elected to pass, rather than shoot, allowing the hosts to clear.

The home side came forward again and again as the game reached its conclusion but Celtic showed maturity and experience in defence to see out the tie and send the Hoops into the play-offs.

CELTIC (4-1-4-1): Gordon; Lustig, Boyata, van Dijk, Izaguirre; Bitton; Brown, Mackay-Steven (Commons 78), Johansen, Armstrong (Forrest 83); Ciftci (Griffiths 66’)
Not used: Ambrose, Rogic, Janko, Bailly,

FK QARABAG (4-3-2-1) Sehic; Gurbanov, Huseynov, Sadygov, Agoli; Quintana, Garayev, Almeida; El Jadeyaoui (Mammadov 73), Reynaldo; Poepon (Ismayilov 62)
Not used: Veliyev, Mustafayev, Yunuszada, Taghiyev, Diniyev


 

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2-0 opening day win against Ross county sets tone for season


imageCeltic 2-0 Ross county  


A solid enough start to the 2015 Campaign With  a 2-0 win against Ross county , it’s been 17 yrs or so since Celtic lost on the opening day so a win yesterday looked on the cards , leigh Griffths got us off to the perfect start with a penalty which he had won himself , Alough this came at a cost as the striker took a sore one and had to leave the feild of play shortly after ..

A worry certainly for Ronnie Deila with qurabag approaching wed , he would want the on form striker available, the team went about their Buisness on Saturday comfortably enough , but their was spells when Ross county did look dangerous , especially second half , Boyata looks like he will need time to settle several misplaced passes could have led to something for the away side but luckily enough they didn’t, the big Belgian does look like he will come good given time , he’s already scored 2 fine goals in European qualifiers , he looks strong but his passing needs work .


it’s going to be a long season and it’s good that we still have the services of kris commons when he came on as a 2 nd half sub the game lit up , the player is never shy about taking a shot and the Ross county keeper had his palms stung several times, when Celtic scored there 2 nd goal it was from brilliant unselfish play from McKay Steven his short incisive pass found Johansen player of the yr last season to smash home a curling shot into the right hand corner of the net , McKay Stevens has added a new edge to the attack and his link up with X team m8 Armstrong Is almost telepathic…

If Celtic can negotiate a tough European tie on wed tea time , the opening exchanges in the season will be looking good , champions league awaits and a booster to the transfer kitty for January , in s long season funds will need to be spent to strengthen , I was pleased to see Craig Gordon had signed till 2018 yesterday he showed again his worth , he’s been a fine replacement for the wall Fraser Forster and it looks like his injury worry a of a few years ago are now gone , we look forward as fans to another fine season and the noise created by the green brigade yesterday was again first class hh bhoys and well done hh



Qarabag v CelticUEFA Champions League 5th August 2015 Kick Off 17:30


Official match report

Celtic fly the flag with opening day win over Ross County

SPFL Premiership

Celtic Park, Glasgow Saturday, August 1, 2015

CELTIC…2 (Griffiths [penalty] 4, Johansen 35) ROSS COUNTY…0

CELTIC celebrated the start of the 2015/16 season with a comfortable 2-0 win over Ross County at Paradise.The Bhoys controlled proceedings from the first whistle to last, scoring twice in the first-half through a Leigh Griffiths penalty and a Stefan Johansen shot from inside the box to effectively kill the contest, before continuing to dominate the game in the second-half. There was slight concern for the Hoops after Griffiths was forced out of action just 15 minutes after scoring but his replacement, Stefan Scepovic, acquitted himself well in his absence.

The Bhoys made four changes to the team that recorded a vital 1-0 win over FK Qarabag on Wednesday evening, the most notable of which was the inclusion of 18-year-old Kieran Tierney, who filled in at left-back in place of the suspended Emilio Izaguirre. James Forrest, Efe Ambrose and Griffiths replaced Nir Bitton, Mikael Lustig and Nadir Ciftci to complete the changes.There was a party atmosphere in the air before kick-off as the fans packed out the stadium to see Hoops legend John Clark unfurl the league flag.

And it wasn’t long before the support had a goal to cheer as well when Griffiths opened the scoring inside five minutes. A clever through ball from Virgil van Dijk had set the hit-man racing into the area but he was fouled from behind by recent Staggies signing Andrew Davies, leaving the referee with no option but to award a penalty.The striker stepped up and slammed the spot-kick low to the right of Scott Fox, who gcould only get the slightest of touches on the ball as it slipped underneath his body, giving the Bhoys the best possible start.

The champions carried on their forward momentum as the game continued and they went close to finding a second after 17 minutes when Forrest burst forward from midfield and worked space for a shot, but Fox had his angles right and saved well.Ronny Deila was then forced into his first change of the match when Griffiths was removed from the action with an injury, allowing Scepovic to make his first appearance of the season.

A moment of panic then fell over Celtic Park when former Hoops midfielder Jackson Irvine broke free from midfield for County and latched on to a loose pass, calling Craig Gordon off his line to meet the Australian outside his box.The Hoops keeper committed himself to the challenge and caught Irvine, earning himself a yellow card. Ian McShane took the set-piece for the visitors and curled a shot through the Celtic wall but Gordon saved well.

The Staggies went close again minutes later through Craig Curran’s low shot from 20 yards but the Bhoys soon retained control of the match when Stefan Johansen finished a well-worked move to give the Celts a 2-0 lead. The goal came from patient play on the edge of the area before Gary Mackay-Steven adroitly weaved his way into the box and played a perfectly weighted pass to Johansen, who had expertly timed his run into the area and thumped the ball beyond Fox with his right foot.

Celtic continued to dictate play after the break, working the ball down the wings through Forrest and Mackay-Steven, but County were pressing much higher and quicker, thwarting Celtic’s play in midfield. The game settled in that pattern until just before the hour mark when Gordon was called into action to save from Curran before Armstrong rounded Fox at the other end only to see his cut-back cleared for a corner.The chances at both ends sparked the game back into life, with Irvine emerging as a threat from midfield for the visitors as they played on the counter-attack.

Ronny Deila made a double switch to regain control and gave Saidy Janko his first taste of competitive action in place of Tierney on the hour mark. Kris Commons also came on for Johansen as the Bhoys sought to kill the match.County still looked dangerous, however, and Gordon had to move quickly to save a stinging effort from substitute Raffaele De vita after Marcus Fraser beat Ambrose and Commons to cross. It wasn’t long before Celtic got back in control of play, mostly through Commons, who struck a thunderous shot at goal from 25 yards which was tipped over by Fox before Armstrong also went close with a clever chipped shot.

The former Dundee United man looked in the mood to get on the score-sheet, as did Commons, who went close again with 10 minutes left but dragged his shot wide from right of the box. The wins gave the champions a positive start to the defence of their title and good momentum going into Wednesday’s vital UEFA Champions League qualifier third qualifying round second leg against FK Qarabag in Azerbaijan.

CELTIC (4-2-3-1) Gordon; Ambrose, Boyata, van Dijk, Tierney (Janko 60); Brown, Johansen (Commons 60); Forrest, Armstrong, Mackay-Steven; Griffiths (Scepovic 19). Not used: Bailly, Rogic, Bitton, McGregor

ROSS COUNTY (4-5-1) Fox; Fraser, Davies, Boyd, Forster; Murdoch (De Vita 56), McShane (Graham 85), Irvine Quinn, Gardyne; Curran (Boyce 70). Not used: Bachman, Robertson, Holden, Franks


CELTIC’S Champions League qualifying second leg against Qarabag will be shown live on BT Sport Europe wed tea time Celtic take a 1 goal lead to Azebaijan for the return game which has a 5.30pm kick-off.


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