Celtic’s Transfer Window From Hell Continues On Its Downward Spiral.

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Sometimes there’s just no sign of the bottom.

Last night I had written a very different article. Last night I was cautiously – but only cautiously – optimistic on Adam Idah, because he ticked the pace and power boxes Rodgers appeared to want. Today, with the deal set to be complete shortly, we’ve been told that there’s no option to buy.

We’re taking Norwich’s third choice striker to give him games, not to strengthen our forward line.

If that’s true then this disaster of a window is just about complete.

The cherry on the cake came this morning when Reo Hatate went off injured for Japan. The sense that we’re watching a season unravel is stronger now than it’s ever been.

I cannot convince myself that we’re coming out of this window in better shape than we went into it. There are real and serious doubts that anyone at the club, including the manager, has a grip on things. The bickering over the blame game usually doesn’t start over a signing until he’s played matches; one Celtic website widely seen as pro-board is already pointing the finger at Rodgers for choosing the player … and I don’t even care any longer.

This is the first time in a long time that I’ve felt completely at the end of the rope as far as Celtic goes. The first time in many, many years that I just want to file a piece and then walk away for the day and forget the whole shambles that passes for this football club.

This time last year we were bouncing, on the back of a great first half to the season … the only disquieting issue was that Lawwell was back as chairman and we had taken the inexplicable decision to sell Giakoumakis and Juranovic.

As I said yesterday, our best central defender is injured, and whilst we wait to find out the full extent of that we’re keeping at the club a guy who the manager doesn’t rate and doesn’t want and who knows it and is pissed off enough about it to go running to the media, and I don’t blame him one bit for it. What a disgusting position we’ve put him in.

Our midfield will come out of this weaker. Whether Turnbull actually goes or stays, he’s got one foot out the door and Holm will replace him and you don’t need me to tell you that Turnbull offers us more especially as a goalscoring player. Hatate’s injury? I’m past caring, I really am, because it’s one thing after another with him the same as with Carter Vickers.

And up front, we’re bringing in a Norwich third choice on loan for six months.

And yes, I was cautiously optimistic on that one last night when it looked like he was at least a guy who ticked the Brendan Rodgers boxes and fitted the blueprint, but nobody will convince me that this is a signing he was enthusiastic about when there’s no option to buy there.

It’s exactly what guys online said it was last night; a cheap, shitty panic, induced last-minute scramble around the bargain basement. And I apologise to all the guys on Twitter who said so.

I wasn’t going to hammer a nail into the guy’s coffin before I’d seen him play and I’m not going to take this out on the player now here either, because the player’s not at fault here and he just wants to get on with his career and get games under his belt.

But a player like that shouldn’t be rolling up at Celtic Park as though this was a work experience gig. A player like that should not be asked to carry a close title race, and we’re no stronger for getting this deal done. It is scandalous that this is what we’re gambling a title on.

And my concerns over the manager continue to grow.

Rodgers will get blamed for the unravelling of this season. As I said, it’s started already in certain places. The pro-board site I mentioned earlier has actually praised the summer recruitment as wonderful and the product of the club whilst framing this as a disaster to be blamed on the manager; you want to talk about cognitive dissonance?

People are playing games here.

There is no togetherness at Celtic Park. Everyone is working at cross purposes, and it is impossible to deny that when both pro and anti-board camps are hearing the same murmurings of discontent and only arguing over who is to blame for them.

Everyone is to blame for them, giant egos coming ahead of the common good.

Who do we blame for this?

Well however people might want to dress it up, the head of recruitment presents the manager with the options and if all those options are dreadful and the manager feels he’s got no choice but to pick the least bad one that’s not on the guy in the dugout.

He’s got to build a team. He needs cover in every position and it’s either this guy or we go with what’s at the club right now and take an even bigger risk. With tens in the millions in t he bank this is the road his paymasters have chosen to go down, and if this is the best option he’s been presented with then the people putting those options together are a joke, aren’t they?

But he made a huge, huge mistake coming back here to Celtic at this moment in time, and I don’t think a single one of us is in the least doubt about that.

He cannot work properly under these people.

Lawwell undermined him the last time he was here and with his son in charge of the recruitment and scouting there was a giant risk that he was going to be undermined this time too. All of us who supported the appointment assumed that things would work differently this time around, and they do. They are worse this time around. This is worse than the John McGinn window, this is a more dangerous situation than the clash between manager and board was then.

The problems didn’t start when Rodgers walked through the door. Rodgers never stood a chance. No half decent manager faced with this shit-show of an executive which thinks cronyism and nepotism are the ways to run a business with a high eight figure turnover stands a chance.

Oh, Rodgers isn’t blameless.

He hasn’t fought hard enough. He hasn’t gone to Desmond and laid it on the line, and right now I would not be sad to see the back of him because we need someone who isn’t prepared to roll over like this and accept being made to look an absolute mug – and that’s how he’s going to look when he faces the media and has to justify a month long search which ends in this soul-crushing manner.

But we also know that the people who have twice hired Lennon and twice hired Rodgers can’t be trusted with another managerial appointment because their primary requirement, more than a record of success, will be to find someone pliable and willing to toe the line … and I don’t want a manager who doesn’t have total control of his own destiny.

Because then, stand or fall, you can judge that man.

You know why these people don’t want a manager like that? Egotism. They want to hold onto the reigns so they convince themselves that they built the team, not him. That the success is down to them, and they do believe that, they do believe all this is their doing.

Rodgers looks weak, and he looks weak because he’s allowed himself to be weak and since he’s charged with an awesome responsibility I have very little sympathy for his position.

I am more sad about the impact it has on the rest of us.

But those above him have done him up like a kipper and their dysfunctional leadership and scandalous arrogance and the insular incestuous way they do things is why we are here.

They are its authors and executors. This time last year, Lawwell was back but we were in the best position we’ve been in as a club in a my living memory.

And look what a mess we’re in. He’s been chairman for 12 months and look at the state we’ve managed to get ourselves in. And this can’t go on.

I’ve heard comparison already to the Wilo Flood window.

This makes the Wilo Flood window look like a triumph.

Yeah, this is a crisis now.

We’re seeing exactly what happens when a major institution is run by a tiny group of people, for their own benefit and to massage their own egos, with no outside input sought or welcomed, and who are hopelessly out of their depth but convinced of their own brilliance.

And we’re going to go through cycles of chaos as long as this is a family run corner shop with a family run corner shop mentality, full of petty jealousies.

You know what? I’ll cover it and I’ll write about it but I’m going to attempt to emotionally disconnect from this club for a while because it’s demoralising and exhausting right now.

As far as further money goes, I’m certainly not funding this, because this is a piss take.

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  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    This post has been deliberately timed for midnight on 31st January 2024…


    They have exactly 24 Hours !

    • Captain Swing says:

      Send your answers written legibly on the back of a fiver to

      PL, P.O. BOX 1888, Glasgow G40 3RE

      I think the chances of them now pulling any rabbits out of hats is pretty low. They are maybe banking on the anger dissipating during the two weeks before the next home game. Had we been at home this weekend, things could have been very ugly – and I mean a Davie Dodds level of ugliness.

  • John France says:

    Hi James, great article. I’m a pensioner now and have been supporting our club since I was born. In the past we had to get rid of the Kelly & White families and I think we’ll have to do the same with the Lawwell & Desmond mob too.

  • Robert Downey says:

    I agree 100% James.
    From the minute Lawwell walked back in I knew Ange would be off , one way or another.
    He would not work under these conditions.
    Lawwell is an egotistical maniac.
    If we lose this title , the blame will rest fairly and squarely on the head of Lawwell.
    Same as ten in a row
    I am beginning to think Lawwell has nudie pics of Dermot Desmond

  • The Jackal says:

    Excellent article. A shot across the bows at DD would not have gone amiss either. An absentee landlord who uses our club as his play thing and empowers Lawwell. I detest the whole board, Nicholson is a puppet, a complete embarrassment to his position and responsibilities.

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