We warned Ajax to put their cheque book away and save themselves £22m (if that was even the fee they paid) and not sign Calvin Bassey.
The Dutch masters saw something in the Nigerian international that inexplicably made them think that shelling out £22m was a good idea.
Since he arrived in Amsterdam, Bassey has been pilloried for his performances and whilst I concede it can take a player some time to settle in, even I have to admit that mistakes like this are just sheer amatuerish:
Watch it again. Look at the fans in the background.
Poor Calvin. No wait, poor Ajax. In fact, eff that. They both deserve each other and I am judging the Dutch club, who are world renowned for spotting elite talent, for signing a player that was clearly overrated and under skilled for them.
As Japan are set to face Uruguay this morning in the countries next international fixture, news that Daizen Maeda missed training and will not feature in the 1030am kick off will fill the Celtic fans with worry.
But as we wait on news of Maeda, his replacement in the side is Brighton’s Mitoma Kaoru.
Described by Hochi News as a ‘super sub’, Mitoma has been in very good form for the English Premier League surprise package.
Sitting in 7th place, Mitoma has helped the seaside club maintain their EPL status this season with nine goals and six assists.
His form has caught the eye of Manchester United who are reportedly looking to take him to Old Trafford in a £35m deal. [Manchester Evening News]
Moriyasu said of Mitoma, “It is not that he did not start the World Cup because [Mitoma] was not strong, but his condition was not 100% when he entered the tournament.
“Now that they are a new team, they will start working on how to draw the power of Mitoma from the starting lineup.”
The fact that Hajime Moriyasu rates Maeda above the Brighton winger speaks volumes for out bhoy and we should really appreciate having such a talented (and underrated, in my opinion) player in our ranks.
The Celtic fans are supremely confident that the title race is over.
A nine point gap and a superior goal difference means that with just nine games left to play, it would take a monumental collapse of epic proportions for Ange Postecoglou’s men not to lift the title.
Even with two games still to play against ‘them’, it is still very difficult to see where we could drop points.
But John Hartson warns against complacency in the title race.
Speaking on The Go Radio Football Show, Hartson warned, “It’s game by game. You cannot take your eye off the ball. Taking your eye off the ball is not winning on Saturday. It is drawing 1-1. That’s taking your eye off the ball.
“This team is driven on the training ground every day. They know what’s at stake and they’ve got a certain way of playing and they’ve got a certain way of getting results. They keep going. They don’t stop. They never stop.
“There’s 27 points to play for. It’s not over until it’s mathematically over.
“They have Rangers to play twice in the league. Rangers will be determined to put that performance right from the final a couple of weeks ago, the League Cup final where Rangers felt they didn’t perform as well as they should have.
“So it’s not over. Of course they [Celtic] are huge favourites, of course they are, and they should go and get the job done.
“But it’s not a foregone conclusion.“
One thing is for certain, Ange Postecoglou will not get complacent. He will have it drilled into the players that there is still plenty to play for. So will Callum McGregor.
But as fans, we can be a bit more cocky about it if we wish because we are top of the league looking, down on the Rangers.
The quality that Celtic have all over the park means that we tend to dominate every domestic game with ease.
Our style of play is set up so that whenever we have the ball, it is difficult for opponents to win it back and our possession stats go through the roof.
Our midfield, in the main, is mostly to thank for that. Players like Callum McGregor dictate the tempo and rhythm of the play and the others around him try to unlock defences to secure the three points.
BBC reporter Kheredine Idessane was looking at the teams impressive goalscoring stats and highlighted the important contribution of two Celtic stars that have gone under the radar.
Writing on the BBC website, Kheredine said, “Since the World Cup break, Celtic have played 19 matches, in which Mooy and Hatate have contributed 13 goals and 12 assists between them.
“That’s 25 goal involvements from the middle of the park.
“Quite a return, and a big driver of Celtic’s surge through all competitions since the festive season.”
The Celtic fans recognise the contribution of Aaron Mooy since his return from the World Cup and how the big Aussie has improved not only his game, but the first team. And Reo Hatate?
He does was Reo Hatate does. Always consistent, the Japanese midfielder is turning into top quality midfielder.
Check out the news from all the Celtic blogs across the webHERE
This is something I believe all Celtic fans can get on board with.
Just prior to the League Cup final, we had to endure the unending nonsense from the Ibrox players and manager in the press where Michael Beale spoke about Ange being lucky and Fashion Sakala referring to us as ‘the other mob’ and how they are the better team.
Sakala’s was clearly comments that were scripted that someone in Ibrox told him to say and Beale? Well, Beale just lets his mouth run away with him.
Check out the news from all the Celtic blogs across the webHERE
And another player that has let his mouth run away with him was James Tavernier.
The Rangers skipper flapped his gums in the media by claiming that Celtic will meet the ‘real’ Rangers in the next Hampden showdown in an interview that tells me one thing.
These guys have learned nothing.
And John Hartson has brilliantly called them out on it.
“Because in life there’s doers as there’s sayers. Don’t be a sayer, be a doer.
“Make sure that if you’re in the team for Rangers you make sure that when you cross that line, whether it’s at Celtic Park, Ibrox or Hampden that you are at your very, very best.
“And you’ve got to hope that every other player around you is at their very, very best and then you might, you just might, catch Celtic on a bit of an off day or you might play better than Celtic on the day, and then you’ll win the game.
“There was there was a few quotes coming out of the Rangers dressing room before and I said the same it doesn’t make one bit of difference.
“You do your talking on the pitch and then by doing that, that’s when you’re gonna win the respect of the supporters.
“In my life too many people say a lot but do nothing. BE A DOER, don’t say it, go do it.”
This is bang on by Hartson but I fear that come the end of April, Tavernier is just going to be labelled as another sayer and will be adding another two failures to his long list of failures since becoming the Ibrox captain.
You know what I love about the game in this country?
The fact that, like referees, our pundits are all impartial with no ties to the Glasgow club that resides in Govan.
It really is what makes our game special and maintain it’s credibility in world football.
What do you mean 90% of referee’s are Rangers fans and the pundits on the radio and telly are mostly retired Ibrox players???
Who would have thunk it eh?
Of course, I am being sarcastic, but like the referees in this country, the pundits just cannot see past their own bias to give an informed view or opinion on Celtic games. And that’s because most of them are ex-Rangers players.
I don’t care who you support but you cannot sit and tell me that when you are commenting on a team that is your biggest rival, you are not going to be bias in your views. Of course you will.
I do it. I’m a Celtic fan and I see the game through Celtic eyes but at least I can admit it. Which makes the BBC coverage of Celtic games a joke in this country.
Watch three ex-Ibrox players attempt to give their unbiased views on the Youan yellow cards:
The second booking, I’ll concede, was harsh but give me peace about the first one. That’s probably closer to a red than a yellow to be honest.
The punditry in this game is gone. I highlight it often enough on my YouTube channel.
It’s not just the refereeing that needs an overhaul in this country, the punditry does too.
Ex Rangers player Steven Thomson seeks the views of ex Rangers player Neil McCann and ex Rangers player Richard Foster.
😂😂 both absolute stick on yellow cards. Caught Starfelt late on the shin with a studs down challenge at pace, then he kicks CCV in the face. Off balance or not, it’s reckless and endangered the opponent.
Something that Celtic fans are used to and have been used to over the years is the media’s strange pandering to the Ibrox club.
For whatever reason, they feel the need to bump up the Govan clubs ego with some printed (now published) nonsense and the only thing I am raging about is that I never had the foresight a decade ago to open up Born Celtic to rip the mince out of it.
But even after all that time, even since this new Rangers came into the league, Celtic have still been the dominant team.
Put it this way, the newco has only won two trophies in ten years. If that was my club, I would be asking why the gap between us and them is so huge.
Because by anyone’s standards, a Quadruple Treble and another nine in a row would suggest that the gulf between the two is a chasm.
But not the BBC. The establishment broadcaster decided to interview Ally McCoist where the former oldco striker and newco manager claimed that the gap isn’t really that big.
In fact, to even claim the gap is closing when, factually, it has increased is just nonsensical.
The Glasgow Derby ticket fiasco has been hogging the headlines over the last few days.
Ever since *Rangers decided to cut the allocation four years ago, the media for some strange reason refuse to lay the blame squarely at the door of the Ibrox board.
They will skirt around the issue and greet about how both clubs need to get together to sort it out but in reality, there is only one club that is to blame for how it all started.
And Mark Guidi laid it squarely at the door of Ibrox. He almost got the story right for the reasons why they did it, but you have to at least give the man kudos for trying here.
Speaking on The Go Radio Football Show, Guidi said, “You want to go back to how all this started it was it was when Dave King was the chairman of Rangers and wanted to find a way of getting more money from season tickets.
“And also making sure that season ticket holders were also given both *ld F*rm games at Ibrox rather than moving the Broomloan Road season tickets out the way. So he wanted to do that.
“He wanted to look after his own supporters and it is also financially beneficial, I believe. So it’s unfortunate, but I understand where Dave King was coming from, on that.
“Celtic then followed suit and it’s then got nasty, in some respects.
“So I think we either go back to the way it was with the 7000 for both teams, or we have nothing at all.
“I don’t think the seven or eight hundred works. Clearly that there’s a safety issue. So we either go back to one or the other.”
Sometimes I wonder if the media in this country just play dumb or are actually just that.
Looking at how they conduct themselves with their sensationalist headlines and clickbait garbage, I reckon they are smarter than what we give them credit for. But not smarter in a good way.
Charlie Nicholas made a couple of good points in his column today but instead of highlighting those, the media went with the fear that Kyogo and Hatate might want to leave Celtic over this.
As reported by the Glasgow Times, Nicholas said, “I am mystified with the way Japan boss Hajime Moriyasu has seemingly canned the pair. It really is a big surprise, as I regularly watch Hatate and Kyogo.
“I mean, why did he have them in his squad before the World Cup? He looked happy with them but then left the duo behind for Qatar.
“While he seems to have faith in another Celtic star, Daizen Maeda – which is understandable – he now appears to have dismissed Hatate and Kyogo as squad members.
“So, if Japan coach Moriyasu doesn’t think they are good enough, what level do they need to get to? Of course, as a huge fan of both, I think they should be in his squad.
“Yes, I realise Japan did well in terms of their set-up at the World Cup – but Kyogo and Hatate would offer them so much more quality. Maybe the coach prefers to play defensively and hit on the counter.“
The fact that both players are clearly deserving of a call up but are not is what should be in question here. That and the fact that our game has been absolutely trashed by Moriyasu.
But instead, the media in their infinite wisdom decided to focus on an overhyped ‘transfer’ story.
The Lisbon Lions will go down as one of the greatest, if not the, greatest football team in Scottish football history.
1967 is a year in Celtic’s history that will be told across many generations of supporters as Billy McNeill and Co swept up domestically every trophy available and became the Champions of Europe.
A truly monumental feat that will never be repeated again.
But not only were they great footballers, they were fantastic human beings. And Kenny Dalglish shared a story of what it was like coming through the Celtic ranks amongst these giants of Paradise.
Speaking in The Scotsman, Dalglish revealed, “It was the same when I was 17 (at Celtic).
“Danny McGrain was 18, and we trained with the first team. Everyone just trained together.
“They were brilliant with us, like calming you down and encouraging you. They were the Lisbon Lions.
“They won five trophies in the one season, didn’t they?!”
The stories of kindness and openness of the Lions will always be remembered and told of those that were fortunate enough to meet them.
I wasn’t as fortunate but whenever a Celtic legend, or a fan for that matter, recalls a meeting with them, just watching them tell the story of the encounter shows you the amount of reciprocal respect there was.