Will Celtic Win The League — Wanna Bet?

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Last week, after 2 games played I caught up with my yearly assessment of whether Celtic would win the league or not.

https://dancingbhoy.wordpress.com/2019/08/23/will-celtic-win-the-league/

My opinion at that time was that it is ours to lose, based on the signings we had made, current performance and backed that up with the odds available at the various bookmakers.

Has that opinion changed after 4 games played including the weekends game against our closest rivals Rangers and the transfer window closing last night?

Undoubtedly, Celtic have spent significant sums and strengthened, the 2 new players that I had question marks over namely Julien and Bolingoli played well at the weekend removing any serious doubts on their abilities over the season, although Bolingoli looks better going forward than in defence. The other new replacement Taylor signed just before the window closed last night will more than likely make this position his own pushing Bolingoli forward.

The new signing and debutante in the Glasgow Derby, Hatem Abd Elhamed, looks like a quality player at either right back or centre-back, fast, strong and aggressive.

Then there was the return of Fraser Forster in goal who had very little to do as the back 4 in front of him and Brown in centre midfield swept up the Rangers attack before it became a credible threat.

Additionally , the other new signings of note include Mohamed Elyounoussi, who looks like a good addition of an attacking winger.

Too many to name really, but the team played well despite being written ff in some quarters of the media and Edouard let the line with strength and guile as usual.

As the transfer window slammed shut, Rangers finalized a deal to bring back Ryan Kent who was a decent player for them last season, good going forward, scored a handful of goals, but is most celebrated by the rangers support for striking Celtics captain Scott Brown .. a fee of £7m for a player who hasn’t even had a first team game with his parent club?

Serious, are you mad, or just feeding the bears a squirrel to give them hope and distract them with the fact that Celtic are going to win this league comfortably now.

Yes it’s only 4 games in, but Celtic have set down a marker both on and off the field.

The league is a marathon and not a sprint, things happen over the season, players get injured or suspended, but Celtic have superior quality and strength in depth and I’m confident that we will win this league.

To back that opinion up, have a look at the bookmakers sites, pre-season Celtic had a win ratio of 5 times more likely to win the league than Rangers, this dropped to 3.5 prior to the Glasgow Derby game.

After Sundays win with 4 games played,  it’s is now 7.5 times more likely that Celtic will win the league.

A £100 bet on Celtic returns £33.33 where as the same bet on Rangers returns £250.

Games Played Celtc Odds £100 Return Rangers Odds £100 Return Win Ratio
0 4/9 £44.44 9/4 £225.00 5.06
2 11/20 £55.00 21/10 £210.00 3.82
3 4/7 £57.14 2/1 £200.00 3.50
4 1/3 £33.33 5/2 £250.00 7.50

Now that we’ve got that game out the way and the transfer window is firmly shut, my money is on the Celtic to win this league comfortably.

A bet of 10 grand returns £3,333,  tax-free,   better than money in the bank with low risk.

Are you uncertain or uncomfortable about that?   Then give it a little time for the odds to go more in Celtics favour,  your returns will be reduced but your risk will be lowered.

I’m not really a gambling man,  I don’t bet money every week hoping it wins,  not even just for fun,  a few quid here and there doesn’t matter to me.

But I do like to assess risk and reward and a one-off £10k bet paying £3.33k return is a completely different matter.


As a final note,  credit where credit is due to the board for splashing the cash on some decent signings.    My remaining criticism is that we should have did that sooner,  had the team gelled and we would now be in the Champions League group statges rather than the lesser Europa League.

This failure to invest in a timely manner happens most seasons and far too frequently for my liking,  indicating an underlying issue which needs rectified,  whether that be in the identification and recruitment of candidates,  negotiating deals or deciding that the team needs support and investing the money sitting in the bank to improve the team.

 

 

 

 

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You’re The Best Thing That Ever Happened ..

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Check that pic of my 3 kids taken on the morning of the Millennium,   Laura is now 28,  Claire 22 and Steven 30.   All summer babies.

Happy days.

Things have changed in the past almost 20 years.  I was divorced a few years later and they’ve grown up,  All young graduates and my elder two are established in their careers and living with their partners.

A couple of weeks ago,  I mentioned on here how pleased I was for my munchkin, Claire 22,  to graduate and get a new job.

The only problem is that the new job is down south at one of the major banks.  Thankfully its not London based,  but it is a fantastic opportunity and carries an amazing starting salary.

I’m absolutely delighted for her.

But here’s the thing ..  I’m somehow sad,  not for her or them .. I’m delighted ..  that doesn’t change.    But its as if somehow its an end of an era and my purpose and usefulness has come to an end.

That’s rubbish really .. I know it .. You know it.

But its overwhelming.

I find myself making tea in the morning,  knowing that she’s still asleep in bed,  knowing that she’s safe and thinking next week,  I’m on my own.

We had dinner last week and her brother and sister wrote beautiful messages on the good-luck cards they have her ..  Their as proud as I am ,, but without the angst.

Tomorrow I drive her down south,  she’s going to be living with her boyfriends parents.

I’m looking forward to meeting them and I’m pleased that she’s not going to a flat. Moving house and starting a new job in a new city is stressful enough never mind living in another unknown place.

A 6 hour drive from Glasgow and it will be like driving her down the aisle.   Giving her away to a new life.

Yeah pathetic I know.

She says she’ll be back every few weeks and she’s already planned to be back on the 14th.

But how long will that last?

Indefinitely she says,  her life is up her,  she says.

And I want to believe her,  even although she’s starting a new life down there.

I hear my inner voice saying,  part of being a parent is you need to let them fly,   you’ve done a good job,  provided for them and gave them the tools to fly and now they are living their own lives.

It’s my proudest achievement seeing them get on in life.

But despite my brain over-ruling my heart, knowing it makes sense,  it still hurts.

Jeez,  I’ve had my moments of heartache or even heartbreak before.

But nothing,  no nothing, compares to this.

Tomorrow her boyfriends parents kindly offered if i’d like to stay at theirs.  But I booked a hotel to save any inconvenience.  I’m genuinely looking forward to meeting them and going for dinner on Saturday night.

No doubt that there will be sad good-byes on Sunday before the drive back north to Glasgow.

No doubt that I’ll be choked but will try and keep a smile on my face.

On the positive site,  next week,  an empty nest ..  I can sit about in my pants ..  play my music or piano as loud as a like at any time of day or night.

It’s time to take the parental gloves off and get back to living a single life.

Give it a couple of years,  the grand-kids will be here and I’m quitting this working for a living malarkey.

Bring it on!!   🙂


 

Sunday at 12pm,   Celtic are playing Rangers at Ibrox,   I may be driving up the road or might watch it down south then head for home.

I hope there aren’t any more tears on that long drive up the road.

Have a good weekend whatever you do.

Will Celtic Win The League?

Will Celtic Win The League?

Celtic have won 8 domestic championships in a row,   a fantastic achievement,  but we’ve been here before many years ago when we won 9 championships back  from the season beginning in 1965 and that ending in 1974.

Our greatest historic rival Rangers were close in some of those years, closest in season 1972-3 where they lost the league by a single point.

But of course,   that was then when the league had teams like East Fife who have faded or even Rangers who went into administration in 2012 and are currently in the liquidation process.

New Rangers .. Yes the company is the club ..  started in the 4th division of Scottish football and have made their way slowly back to the top division,  stumbling to gain access to the premier league after being humbled 6-1 by Motherwell in the play-offs over 2 games.

How we laughed .. at their pain .. of course we did .. that’s what rivals do in any context.

It’s their superiority complex,  their hubris and expectation that they will succeed that makes them vulnerable .. then seeing them fail.

Beating the part-timers of the lower leagues was easy with their superior resources and full-time professional players against guys who were working part-time in other jobs to earn a living.

Rangers reached the premiership in season 2016-7 were they finished 3rd  behind second place Aberdeen by 9 points and huge 39 points being champions Celtic who finished with a massive 106 points and not losing a game in their incredible “invincibles” season.

Before that season started,   I blogged about it,   their expectation was high but there was no contest.    The bookies knew it.  I knew it.  Anyone with half a brain and not wearing blue-tinted  spectacles knew it.

https://dancingbhoy.wordpress.com/2016/08/01/money-in-the-bank/

However .. and I hate to say it .. I hate to have any association with that “Rangers Are Coming” strap-line that their poisonous club are using to get their fans on side and sell season tickets.

But the reality is Rangers have spent massively over the past few seasons and have improved winning 67,70 and 78 in the past 3 seasons.

In that same time,   Celtic have lost momentum and dropped from their highest point of 106 points to a meagre 82 and a slight improvement to 87.   But don’t let that fool you,   many of last seasons performances were dire lack-lustre games both with Brendan Rodgers and Neil Lennon as a manager including getting beat at Ibrox by Rangers on 2 occasions.

Season Winner Points Second Points Third Points
2016-7 Celtic 106 Aberdeen 76 Rangers 67
2017-8 Celtic 82 Aberdeen 73 Rangers 70
2018-9 Celtic 87 Rangers 78 Kilmarnock 67

Anyone who thinks that Rangers are not  making a serious attempt to provide a challenge and win the league is deluding themselves.    In my opinion Rangers are spending money they don’t have and will throw all resources they have at stopping Celtic winning the league 9 times in a row this season.

But are they good enough?      Continue reading “Will Celtic Win The League?”

This is Not the Champions League. #UEFA

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Celtic are back in action tonight,  the second-leg of the first of four qualifying rounds to get to the UEFA Champions’ League Group Stages.

We are already 3-0 up from the first leg against Alashkert of Armenia and tonight should be a formality.

How skewed are UEFA in the decision making of their qualifying process that whoever wins between Scotland and Armenia’s champions are playing 8 games to qualify in the group stages when there are 26 direct entries to the group stages including 4 from England, 4 from Spain and 4 from Italy,  3 from Germany and 3 from France.

This is not a whinge saying that the above is not fair.    If that’s how UEFA want to play the game then that’s up to them.

What am I saying is that this is no longer the “Champions” league and should be renamed accordingly.

Tonight,  the walk from Dalmarnock train station along the wide thoroughfare of the Clyde Gateway with the stadium looking magnificent in the distance always brings pride in my heart and a smile on my face.

Mon the hoops.

Treble Treble then 10 in a Row.

I’m a Celtic fan, It’s part of who I am. I can’t remember being anything else.

Even in those dark days of divorce, I’d find myself at Celtic Park surrounded by fellow fans and thinking no matter how bad things get, I’ll always have this and at least I’ll never be a hun. 🙂

Celtic has been not only part of my life but also my sons. In those dark days it was the glue that bonded us bhoys together. Him aged 5 sitting on my knee eating pizza, the seat beside us empty. The guys around us patting his head and giving him sweets.

20 odd years later, we’re still in the same seats in the Jock Stein Stand with the same guys sitting around us.

Part of my legacy with my Bhoy is that I’ll pay the season tickets until I’m not working then he’ll take the mantle and hopefully grandkids will fill that empty seat.

Today Celtic play Hibs at Easter road with a beam back to the Kerrydale suite at Celtic Park. A few of our fellow fans are meeting for a beer and to watch the game together.

It’ll be a bit different to talking to the backs of their heads.

If we win then that’s the league wrapped up for the seventh year in a row and a win against Motherwell at Hampden in May and that’s a historic second Treble in a row.

Would you bet against it?

I wouldn’t.

If you’ve read any of my nonsense, you’ll know I like an occasional flutter, but only really like to bet certainties and put enough on that the return is worthwhile.

Earlier in the week I contacted Ladbrokes for the odds of Celtic winning 10 league titles in a row.

As you can see from the response above it’s not a risk they are willing to take. I.e In their opinion Celtic will go on to win the 10 titles in a row.

Got to agree with them.

Enjoy your day, these are the good days. These are days to celebrate and remember.

Celtic vs Rangers Perspective.

I regularly put on a post with odds before the Glasgow Derby of Celtic vs Rangers.

It’s by far the biggest rivalry in Scotland, the UK and certainly one of the most fiercestly contested derby matches in the world.

It’s more than simple rivalry, there’s cultural history involved where most people would presume that all Celtic fans are Catholic with an Irish heritage and all Rangers fans are Protestant with loyalty to the UK.

It’s a generalisation but it’s not as simple as that. Continue reading “Celtic vs Rangers Perspective.”

Torn – Is Glasgow a Binary City?

 

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He’s not a happy man, John that I work with.

I wonder why?

On Friday he seemed to be buoyant, looking forward to the weekend. A quiet night on Friday as he had a flying lesson on Saturday and was saving himself for a big day out at the football and celebrating on Sunday.

John’s a Rangers fan, or a Sevco fan if you like to wind him up about the fact that his original team have went into liquidation and the team in blue that play out of Ibrox are not the same team that he has supported man and boy.

On Friday, he had a spring in his step, lunch time was full of phrases like “We’re back” and “This is the most I’ve looked forward to an Old Firm game in years”.

John’s attitude, probably like most who see the world through blue-tinted glasses is that Celtic haven’t been performing at their best ( true) and that Rangers have had better recent performances ( possibly) and that over the 8 games since Christmas Rangers were the form team and had beaten St Johnstone 3-0 where Celtic could only draw 0-0 against them.

He was in full-on mode .. upbeat, confident and on a roll.

Truth be told, I was more nervous about this game than I have been for any game against Rangers since they were reformed from the assets that Charles Green bought from the insolvency administrators.

Would they be able to beat us at their ground with 45,000 home supporters baying for “Fenian blood”?

My heart said no, but my head wasn’t as confident with a 60/40 likelihood that Celtic would win. Much less than previous games were I had no doubt that we would win, or at least not get beat.

Is that the same thing?

I can handle a draw. But getting beat by your biggest rivals stings.

Glasgow isn’t exactly a binary city,  it’s more 1’s, 0s and Nulls.

For many people,   you’re a Tim or a Hun or nothing and if you’re nothing then you’re viewed suspiciously by either side and assumptions are made from your upbringing and attitude to put you in one box or the other.

So you might as well be something.

But in reality its not as simple as that.  there are many people who really could not give a toss about football or religion and wish that the lot of them would pack up and go elsewhere.

Add to that,  the growing number of immigrants to the city who do not have the historic loyalties which cause this unholy rivalry to be the car-crash spectacle that it has become.

Some people are too involved,  too close to it,  that they lose all sense of perspective.  That they think that its all about “us” and “them”.   Completely unaware that there is so much more to life out there and lots of people who don’t give a fuck.

Did you see the game? Continue reading “Torn – Is Glasgow a Binary City?”