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An Injury To Carter Vickers Would Put The Tin Hit On Celtic’s Appalling Transfer Window.

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Can it only be a couple of weeks ago that clubs were talking about testing our resolve for Cameron Carter Vickers? I was pleased enough when he signed a new deal but looking at my article on that I expressed that continued disquiet about his being injury prone in the very first paragraph.

Sometimes I think I’m a jinx.

The rumour mill tonight is saying that Carter Vickers is injured and may even need to see a specialist, and that this is the reason Lagerbielke was not allowed to travel to Italy. It explains one mystery but it sums up the utter shambles of this transfer strategy, if we’re still calling something as shambolic as this by that name.

This season really could, very easily, turn into an absolute atrocity. Because just think for a minute the state we’ve gotten into here.

Lagerbielke was bought in the summer by a club who foisted him on a manager who took just a handful of training sessions to realise he wasn’t what he required.

It was literally as quick as that.

The manager watched this guy and instantly knew he wouldn’t do. That fact is in the public domain. The player knows he’s not fancied. He knows he has no future here, that after just six months we were willing to cut our losses on him.

Yet he stays to provide backup for the rest of this season. A guy the manager has already decided shouldn’t be in the building. The boss doesn’t want him. He knows the boss doesn’t want him. He has no motivation to play here and the manager has no motivation to select him.

But he stays anyway. What a farce.

Some are going to say this is just bad luck. But it isn’t just bad luck.

This is the outcome of a system which is all over the shop, a system which plainly and simply does not work. Carter Vickers, when fit, is our best central defender. Lagerbielke is so far out of the running that he was on the brink of getting on a plane.

If the manager is willing to cut this guy loose after six months he should have been on that plane, regardless of what happened elsewhere.

Instead, we now have, as our backup, the one centre back the manager definitely doesn’t want here.

We could have gone out and bought one.

(No laughing at the back.)

We clearly have the wherewithal to do that and I think there’s a need for one, if not now then certainly in the summer. Hey, either that or we’re betting on Carter Vickers staying fit which I wouldn’t put stolen money on at this moment in time.

But instead, we’ve brought back the backup to the backup to the backup.

This was a signing made in the first place with no due diligence, a player who the manager did not properly get a chance to scrutinise, using analytics data which doesn’t apply to the type of footballer Rodgers thinks we need. He won’t play more than a handful of games for us; we’re talking here about a guy who’ll only be a drag on the wage bill.

In the meantime, we’ve given a wage rise to a guy who spent a significant portion of last season in the stand and a significant portion of this season there. If the worst-case scenario stories are true we might be lucky to see him again in this campaign.

Here’s why that might be significant.

When the story about Carter Vickers signing a new deal broke in the States, that was on 19 January and the press here duly reported it as a fact.

On 21 January, Rodgers sat at a press conference for the Scottish Cup game against Buckie Thistle. A guy from the BBC asked about the Carter Vickers contract rumour, and this is what our manager had to say about that.

“No. I didn’t know that … I would know probably before you, I would say.”

But did he? Was Rodgers being cute, or did he really not know that was going on behind the scenes? This club is an absolute mess of dysfunction right now, so I wouldn’t bet on or against either outcome because anything could be true at Celtic Park at the moment.

All in all, this is the last thing we needed. We have somehow conspired to come apart during a window when the task was to get stronger. Now we’re weaker at central defence along with not having the left back and not having the striker we needed.

Anyone still defending this or pretending this is okay, I don’t know what it’s going to take to snap you out of this. We’ve now signed eleven players since this season started; who are they? What’s the record for the head of recruitment? What are we meant to make of it?

One was a loanee who has already returned to his club because he was a waste of a shirt. One has gone out on loan to an SPFL club. Another might yet go out on loan when he returns from Asia; either way he’s been no use to us whatsoever. Lagerbielke is the subject of this piece and we know what the situation is with him. That’s four.

Nawrocki is the backup to the central defence, and he might get games now because there’s no Carter Vickers but he’s been unable to dislodge Scales from the team anyway and that should give you pause for thought. Palma started brightly but in the last few weeks real doubts, difficult to shake doubts, have surfaced over him. Bernardo might make it, but he’s not our player yet. Iwata is injured, but he’s an Ange player we had to buy.

Leaving three. The others are Kuhn, who we’ve just signed, Yang who we’ve signed Kuhn basically to keep out of the match-day squad and Holm. What’s the success rate there? How many of them have been failures, and how many successes? Half of them will never be Celtic first team regulars and if everyone was fit might barely make the bench.

We’re going to lose David Turnbull in this window; for all people think Turnbull hasn’t offered us much, he’s done a lot more this season than Holm has. Without Turnbull Holm is the backup midfielder … and that should be a cause for great concern.

You see where the summer could easily be spent not strengthening but continuing to clean up the mess? Tonight’s news just puts the tin hat on it.

We have two sets of people – the coaching team and the recruitment team – working completely at cross purposes and this is the result of that.

I was going to use a different word there – consequence – but that belongs in another context. To quote a great film character, David Stephens of Shallow Grave, “We don’t know what it cost us yet.”

The consequences … well, thinking about what they might be could keep you up at night.

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  • John Fitzpatrick says:

    Throwing the League again James to keep ibrox in the game nothing else makes any sense

  • Jamie Struthers says:

    I can’t believe how this window has gone. I expected disappointment, BIG disappointment but this goes beyond shambolic and the only sense i can make of it is the board trying to let The Rangers catch up with us to make scottish football more appealing. There can be no other reason for the complete nonsensical way the club is being run just now. It’s time for the fans to be heard and let these muppets know who’s club they are trying to destroy.

  • James Garrity says:

    Deja vu all over again. This is unravelling fast, like the 10iar season.

  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    Celtic FC….

    CAN YOU JUST STOP SIGNING FOOTBALL PLAYERS THAT ARE MADE OF FCUKIN GLASS –

    Jeez just go the full hog and get Steven in as manager (He’s Glass, he’d fit in well and be at home)…

    Clearly we don’t know the full facts about this one yet but bloody hell its been some season for injuries –

    What next – Kyogo injured and then Oh who cannot score much anyway still at The Asian Cup…

    Oh jeez – It’s getting worse and worse and worse –

    Thank Goodness Aberdeen have a midweek game tonight – Surely we will be fitter than them on Saturday, that is if we have any first team picks not injured and available for selection !

  • SFATHENADIROFCHIFTINESS says:

    The ‘unravelling’ gathers momentum and we’ve still got 2 days to go yet. FFS.

    Next home game could be a watershed moment in the life of this Board and the Club.
    The Lawwells must be excised from the Club immediately or we’re heading for a melt down of pre Murray proportions.

    And stockpiling dosh for a rainy EUFA day will turn rapidly to throwing good money after bad just to stand still.
    The Board will have more than empty upper tiers to worry about if they allow the Tribute Act to go on a run of League Titles.

    Fergus built in that 10,000 seat advantage for a reason and to not use it properly for the agrandissement of Celtic Fc, not Plc, will be deemed sacrilegious by many.

  • KONY says:

    Insane giving CCV a five and a half year contract when he’s hardly been fit this season, surely it could have waited until the summer to see if his fitness is going to be a concern

  • Bigchunkylardass says:

    How many times – Pedro the Hun is a bitter little man who he thinks was done wrong but Rogers the 1st time and here he sees the opportunity for a double whammy, get Rogers back good and restore his beloved sevco ti winning the league

    HH

  • Stevie says:

    Absolute shambles of a club. From top to bottom. And its gone right downhill since Lawwell crawled back. As you said yesterday in your piece about Lennoxtown. We need a complete clearout from boardroom level, to coaching staff to the development team to half of the first team. Sadly I don’t see that happening. My only hope is that Desmond is given an ultimatum by Rodgers…. Me or Lawwell.

  • Roonsa says:

    Yeah. It’s like some hun who, rather unbelievably, has the braincells to write a script, has put one together which is a dystopian comedy where we are rhe butt of the joke.

    I also see who is being talked about as the Oh “upgrade”. Adam Idah of Norwich. Yeah, exactly. Who? And not only that but a loan deal for Adam Idah of Norwich. You don’t need to say “who?” again, I heard you first time.

    People keep on talking as if today (Wednesday January 31) is the last day of the transfer window. Even Paul Brennan seemed a bit confused with his “T minus 35 hours” headline from yesterday. To clarify. The window closes in Scotland (according to what I have read) at 11.30pm on Thursday Feb 1.

    That’s how long the Celtic board have left to sort out this sorry mess. It is clearly too late even if the will to do so was there (clearly it is not). With so much on the line, I am absolutely smacked of gob at the Keystone Kops production that we have been witness to thus far. If this results, as I suspect it will, in a bad end of of season for us …. heads have got to roll. They simply must. This is incompetence on a massive scale.

  • SSMPM says:

    If being concerned about the shenanigans and inaction of the boardroom is being a bed wetter then a number of us are just that. But arrogantly saying things are just fine don’t worry is shiting your pish all over your club’s supporters.
    Is there a positive with the CCV news? It might spring them into reality and action particularly if it’s a long term injury.
    But that reality and keeping McCarthy and Lagerboy isn’t in unison or on the same planet. I’m hoping against hope here, fearful too, but the signs seem to be steering us into the abyss. HH

  • Bob (original) says:

    This transfer window has become increasingly confusing and infuriating.

    We might not know the facts of what’s really going on, [or not],

    but any CFC supporter knows by now

    that our club MUST be seriosuly dysfunctional behind the scenes.

    …and something has to give…eventually?

  • Jim Duffy says:

    James ,this shambles that you do rightly portray,do you think any of this catastrophic situation has reached the ears of the mighty billionaire Desmond,if so what is your take on his reaction to this ,or is he just happy playing golf ,not giving a toss about Celtic apart from raking in bonus money.I really can’t remember things being as bad as this ,I still can’t get my head around why Rodgers came back,does he really care or is he just going along with the board not rocking the boat as he’s on a £3 million wage deal .The way our club is run beggars belief.

  • SFATHENADIROFCHIFTINESS says:

    ‘Tin Hit’ ?
    Anagram?
    Thin It ?

  • Frank Connelly says:

    and the same applies to McCarthy. Ange didn’t want him neither does Brendan and we get a chance to get him out the door and knock it back if we are to understand cos of his wages, Hes sat on his arse for months and months taking a wage and miles away from a from a place on the bench far less the actual team. What’s that all about?

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