Celtic Faces A Europa League Qualification Minefield … And Its Our Own Damned Fault.

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When you look at Celtic’s transfer policies it is hard not to despair sometimes.

Oh don’t get me wrong, I think there is every chance that this window will close on the best deals we’ve seen in many a year.

If we get in the left back we’re looking for, I think we’re in as good a shape as we’ve been in through the whole of the Road To Ten.

But when you see that our strikers are doing the business and that big Duffy is capable at both ends of the pitch you wonder what might have been if we’d just brought these guys in sooner, if we’d just made these signings at a little quicker a pace.

You wonder what might have happened had we been able to call on these guys against the Hungarians.

As a consequence of going out against them, we’re once again back in the second tier tournament.

We’re once again forced to play Russian Roulette with the fixture list, with Thursday night games and all the associated nonsense that goes with them.

The signing policy, of waiting until the last minute, of not getting business done in a timely fashion, has played a key role in costing us Champions League qualification three seasons on the bounce. The Rodgers Window was a disgrace. Our need for a left back was crystal clear last season, and left the manager playing McGregor in that role. This year it was central defence that was screaming out to be fixed and the lack of a fully fit striker.

I blame the manager too, for not learning the lessons of Cluj. His lamentable decision to play with no forwards saw us getting what we deserved from a must-win, winner takes all game at home where bad tactics and that lack of a potent centre half cost us.

If, like me, you hold the manager accountable for that disgrace, then questions must also be asked about those above him in the Celtic Park power structure, and their own role in what went wrong. These are all questions we were asking at the time, and although that game is in the past they are not questions we should be simply setting aside.

In a couple of hours, we’ll find out who we got in the Europa League final qualifying round; it is a minefield, with some very tough ties waiting for us.

We are here entirely needlessly. Big mistakes at various levels of the club have gotten us to this point. If we find ourselves facing the prospect of travelling to Belgrade or some other potentially hazardous place to play some potentially dangerous team it will be because we failed to plan ahead.

So fingers crossed today for a favourable draw.

Fingers crossed that our mistakes don’t pile even more consequences on us. I know this much; if we go out of Europe before the Group Stages the damage from that is going to be momentous, and then we’re looking at a weakened squad instead of one which we strengthen further.

It will be nobody’s fault but our own if that happens.

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