The time has come for Celtic’s first competitive game of the new season as we welcome FC Midtjylland to Celtic Park in a Champions League qualifier, with 9000 fans, yes 9000 fans!
Just how prepared Celtic are for this game will be answered tomorrow. The squad for the qualifiers has been announced, included are Griffiths, Edouard and Christie, while Ajer and Ntcham miss out, the latter 4 are likely to be off before the end of the transfer window, Griffiths by all accounts is still in the plans, how long for depends if he has any more misdemeanours that come to light, some fans feeling the latest should have seen him out the door.
The latest pre season match, a defeat against Preston North End has had some fans concerned that the club are a million miles away from being a finished article. Unless we get heavily beat in pre season friendlies, I don’t take too much notice of them, it’s about trying things out and getting fitness up. Do I think the current squad is up to a level to beat FC Midtjylland then the answer is probably no, which is not to criticise Ange Postecoglou but the board have had months knowing when this game was due and their long term pursuit of Eddie Howe has landed us where we are, a patched up squad of established players and youth team players.
The club are obviously adding players as the weeks go by, Furuhashi looks exciting but comes in too late for the qualifiers, Ababa has not been included, Starfelt will add to the defence when he completes his deal. A right back, left back, possibly another centre half and goalkeeper are still required to strengthen the squad.
FC Midtjylland opened their league campaign with a home defeat against OB at the weekend, going down 2-1, the Danish club have added a couple of Brazilians to their squad. Erik Sviatchenko makes a return to Celtic Park as an opposition player. Reports in Denmark are suggesting a fall out between coach Bo Henriksen and star striker Sory Kaba, who scored 14 goals last season. Kaba reportedly refused to play in the last pre season match and didn’t feature in their league opener.
Should Celtic overcome the Danish club over two legs then we will face either PSV or Galatasaray, should we fail then we face Czech side FK Jablonec in the Europa.
The club announced that Callum McGregor has been named club captain, don’t think there was much debate as to who else would be but good news none the less. Let’s hope he has a successful period as captain.
Mick Kane hails from Glasgow. He has been hooked on Celtic since he went to his first game when he was 7. Celtic beat Hamilton 8-3 at Celtic Park on the 3rd of January 1987. His favourite player at the time, Brian McClair scored four goals.
He started going regular as a 16 year old when Celtic played at Hampden for the season, being a Southsider it meant a short train journey to get to Hampden. From then he has had a season ticket travelled around Europe for games as Celtic became the dominant force in Scottish football again. A nice change from growing up during Rangers run to 9 in a row.