Celtic Fans Need To Remember, This Isn’t A Minor Mountain To Climb. This Is Everest.

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Before a massive game like this, it is important to stay grounded. Let’s bear in mind that this is not just the biggest test that this team has had since we’ve become title winners. Look at the opposition. It is also the biggest test we’re likely to get.

Ordinarily, this is not the game that I would have wanted to start with. Because really, what’s a win here other than a win here? This is not just a top class European opponent here, this is the best club on the continent and perhaps in the world.

So this isn’t some gradual incline we’re on here; we’ve gone from a gentle slope to standing at the foot of sheer cliffs. We are looking up at Everest.

And the thing is, a lot of us have a nagging suspicion that we might be able to climb it. A lot of us have a nagging suspicion that this Celtic team, on home turf, if we can keep it tight at the back, might just be able to pull something off here.

Over and over again, I need to remind myself what we’re talking about.

Think of Celtic like a boxer who has punched out everyone in the lower ranks and is starting to think of himself as a contender. Wouldn’t you prefer a middle ranked fighter, as your first proper test, as opposed to a tilt at the heavyweight champion?

What happens if – as seems likely – you lose? Do you get written off? Or do the sports writers and fans keep a little perspective? There is a reason, after all, why this guy holds all the title belts. There is a reason why he’s regarded as the best.

So that’s how I’m trying to view this tonight, not as a “test” because that implies that we’ll actually learn how good we’ve become, but as something both more and less. We’re playing against the best tonight, the very best, and as far as we’ve progressed we have not progressed to the point where we are the best club on this continent.

I have my feet on the ground, looking up at the mountain, and although I’m itching to start the climb I’m also trying to be realistic about how far I can get.

I am going to enjoy it either way.

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  • Martin says:

    We don’t really have anything to lose tonight. Nobody expects us to get anything but a loss. If we do… It means very little. Most teams would lose this game. But we can come out playing our way and see what happens. In some ways the pressure is off, so we can give it a good go and maybe defy expectations. If we lose… We’ve lost to the best club in the competition. No shame there.

  • Tom Foolery says:

    I’m both excited and exshited… a schrodinger’s type scenario if you like. On one hand i’m hopeful we can get something on the other we might get well and truly gubbed. Whatever though i’m just going to enjoy the occasion and fingers crossed, whatever the outcome, the Bhoys will do us proud.

  • Seppington says:

    I said it earlier over at VitalCeltic; normally I’d be saying we’ve no real chance (no pun intended) but maybe we could nick something if we defend well and weather the onslaught but with Ange’s side I just don’t know what’s going to happen. It looked like his approach could bear fruit last season if only we were a fully assembled and drilled side and the one thing that sttod out was the lack of fear…and it’s that lack of fear combined with what we know this side can do that makes me believe in the possibility we could be the biggest football story on the planet tomorrow morning….

    Before games like this I have usually resigned myself to dread and fully expect a pumping but here we are before a game against the reigning European champions and I am bursting with anticipation! So weird….

  • S Thomas says:

    I can’t believe they are only the 5th favourite for the tournament as well, they are specialists in this tournament. In my opinion the biggest, and most famous club in Europe, and the world. Celtic have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. I’m looking forward to it HH

  • Jimmy R says:

    Anything other than a drubbing can be taken as a positive. Nobody expects us to win. Most will be gobsmacked if we get a draw. Roll on tonight. Put on a show of our best and see how good we are when measured against the best.The games which matter in this group are the games versus Shaktar and RB

    • Kevan McKeown says:

      This team will have done their homework on us, absolutely nae doubt about that. Think we have a goal threat of our own, but our whole team, especially our defence imo, will have tae be totally switched on tonight right from the off. If its a defeat, which tae be realistic is probable, dae our best no tae get a doin. Give a good account of ourselves ah’ll be happy.

  • Gerrard Duffin says:


  • Jamie Deeprose says:

    Well you may not have your climbing boots on or your maybe a wee bit worried aboot boxing above your weight
    But we are Celtic a far better team then you have given us credit for
    We’ve grown has a club and are ready for whatever is thrown at us and we believe all things are possible for one reason because Ange knows how to win and that is why we’re five points clear 27 goals and only 1 conceded be interesting what you will be writing tomorrow HH

  • John says:

    As most people say it’s a free hit, we have nothing to lose, but it will be a good gauge for ange. I think there will be more pressure when we play Leipzig and shaktar

  • Johnny Green says:

    Getting Real Madrid in our first game is the perfect opener as we might just catch them by surprise. We may well outscore them, but I am still worried about our defence. We need to keep pressuring them in order to curtail their own attacking opportunities, not easy but an early goal for us might have them on the back foot if only we can outlast them and keep them out. Our goalie is going to have to be very special tonight and a bit of luck would be nice.

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