Craig Burley makes dire Celtic comparison as he lifts lid on the 'politics' behind astonishing unravelling

fmp

Well-Known Member
Full text below but this is the highlight:


“You can win all the titles you want when nobody is putting you under pressure but the first year that Rangers have upped their game, and the points will tell you that, Celtic have been found wanting.

“That’s why I take all the glory, glory stuff like the quadruple Treble with a pinch of salt. Yes, they still had to win them but how were they going to handle a serious challenge?"

EDIT: Honourable mention to £5m for Scheidt :cool:
 
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fmp

Well-Known Member
Craig Burley might be living in the middle of nowhere but the plight of his former club is being talked about everywhere.

And from his home in a little town in Connecticut – where the former Celtic midfielder has carved a successful TV punditry career on the other side of the pond – Burley has been watching the unravelling of the Parkhead club’s 10 In A Row bid and the disintegration of the hierarchy’s relationship with its fanbase.


Particularly as comparisons are being made with the implosion suffered in season 1999/2000 when he was part of the ill-fated John Barnes experiment.

It ended with Burley leaving two months before the Liverpool legend was sacked and replaced by director of football Kenny Dalglish – only for Celtic to end the campaign 21 points behind Dick Advocaat’s Rangers.

Craig Burley, Stephane Mahe, Henrik Larsson and Darren Jackson are unveiled at Celtic in 1997
Under Barnes, Celtic had accumulated 40 points from their first 20 games and they suffered the ignominy of a cup defeat at home to Inverness.

This season, under Neil Lennon, it’s 43 points from their first 20 league games and a home cup defeat to Ross County.

The similarities are there for all to see and Burley knows that Rangers’ rampant league form is on a par to that which his team experienced at the turn of the century.

“I still keep in touch with things,” Burley said. “I was reading pieces online the other day and there’s a lot of interesting stuff going on.

“The comparison with the team I played in that year is being talked about and I get that. All I can say is I don’t know what’s going on behind closed doors at Celtic Park these days.

“But some of the stuff that was happening back then – the politics – played a huge part in how the season unfolded.

“Kenny had come back to the club and appointed John Barnes, with Terry McDermott beside him. It was very political – some were getting new contracts, others weren’t getting new contracts and there were divisions, without doubt.

“One of the reasons I left was the politics and that’s why that whole regime unravelled from top to bottom. I left in December and it got even worse.

“The team certainly had the potential to do well but it wasn’t a happy camp.

“People like Eyal Berkovic, and one or two others – I’d describe them as selfish, whereas the team of 18 months earlier was built on unity. That was part of the issue. The dressing room wasn’t as united as it could have been.

“Allan MacDonald had come in as chief executive earlier that year and was trying to shift people like me, so they could sign guys like Rafael Scheidt.

“Certain people wanted to move me on anyway and that’s fine. Players come and go.

“But Celtic paid more than £5million for Scheidt, which back in the day was a huge fee, so there was a concerted effort to get finance in to pay for that.

“They knew they could get money for me. They could’ve got money for other people but they didn’t want to sell some of the others. So I was let go and, to be honest, I was happy to go because I wanted away from some of the stuff.

“In hindsight, I maybe rushed into the move to Derby and that wasn’t my best decision because I could have gone elsewhere.

“But I got a good offer from Jim Smith and Celtic were delighted with the fee, so that was part of their plan.

“I don’t think anything would have been said if the player coming in had been a success.

“But for that kind of money, Celtic didn’t get anything back. I don’t know how many games that fella played but it wasn’t many. In Brazil at the time, they were giving players a few international caps so they could be flogged for huge fees to European clubs and that’s what happened with Scheidt.

“There were other things, though. The juggling act between Berkovic and Lubo Moravcik was a difficult one.

“Barnesy is on record as saying that if he’d known how good Moravcik was, he wouldn’t have signed Berkovic.

“But he spent nearly £6m on him and that gave him a huge problem because Lubo was so talented he couldn’t be left out.

“And if he left Berkovic out, he knew he’d have a problem in the dressing room because he was kind of that way inclined. All of a sudden, you’ve got a side with two very similar players being shoehorned into a team.

“That is fine when you’re beating the cannon-fodder but when playing in Europe and against the top Scottish sides, it was a problem.

“The chemistry and balance in that squad wasn’t very good and that was the difference. It wasn’t a lack of talent.


“You have to look at what you’re up against sometimes and when you look back at the standard of opposition that season, Rangers were strong.

“It was Dick Advocaat’s second season and he had brought world-class players like Arthur Numan and Giovanni van Bronckhorst from Holland. Stefan Klos in goal, Porrini came from Juventus.

“So did Celtic fail that year? Yes but as it unravelled you have to look at the benchmark and Rangers were an extremely strong benchmark.”

Fast forward a couple of decades and the 49-year-old believes change will come at the end of the season.

Burley said: “The club has been accused of resting on its laurels and I’m guessing at the end of the season there will be a managerial change.


“But I don’t know if there will be a change of stewardship above that level. You can win all the titles you want when nobody is putting you under pressure but the first year that Rangers have upped their game, and the points will tell you that, Celtic have been found wanting.

“That’s why I take all the glory, glory stuff like the quadruple Treble with a pinch of salt. Yes, they still had to win them but how were they going to handle a serious challenge?

“I would rather have won the title in 1997/98, against the backdrop we were dealing with and doing it on the last day of the season, than win titles when everybody else was imploding.”
 

vinnie

Well-Known Member
This isn’t the first we’ve challenged. It’s the first we have been so far ahead. Last few years we’ve ballsed it up after NY. This year we’ve beaten them and the sheep after NY. We have to keep it going.

Not worried about them, but worried about us imploding again.
 

linthousebear1981

Well-Known Member
Look any treble, treble is an achievement despite no real challenge. You still need to be pretty consistent and not drop standards for 3 seasons. They didn't get a quadruple treble because lets be honest here that title win last year is not valid. I will not accept that decision particularly with the form we have returned in and the form they have put in. Plus when you look at the turnaround in the Portuguese League of a similar gap you just cannot see any justification for calling the league.

The problem I have with Celtic over the last 10 years is the media have tried to make them out to be this great team, Brown the best captain since Billy McNeil, Rogic a world beater, Ajer the new Baresi etc. There has been too much adulation for a team that has literally achieved nothing when challenged in Europe. They are a good SPL side but they are not a great team, a great team would've qualified for the CL each year, and some of those years they would've got into the last 16 at least and for the rest they would've went into the Europa last 32 each year. However that has not been the case, if anything they have been an embarrassment in Europe suffering some large defeats to minnows and the largest defeat received by any Scottish Club in the CL.

Calling Brown the best captain since Billy McNeil is laughable. If it wasn't for Rangers going down to the 4th Tier Brown would've been out on his arse probably playing the English Championship because he was out of favour, Celtic fans thought he was shit, the Celtic Management team thought he was shit. He was outclassed in midfield in most Old firm games by Edu, Davis, Ferguson and Thomson. He was invisible, he has only became visible because he is coming up against guys that are not of a very good standard. In Europe he disappears again because he is just chasing shadows as technically better players just pass it round him with ease. He is a headless chicken, who is sole purpose on that pitch is to wind people up with bully boy antics. That is not a captain, that is basic footballer and a wannabe thug.
 

Shawlands_Bear

Well-Known Member
This isn’t the first we’ve challenged. It’s the first we have been so far ahead. Last few years we’ve ballsed it up after NY. This year we’ve beaten them and the sheep after NY. We have to keep it going.

Not worried about them, but worried about us imploding again.
Are you honestly worried we'll throw the league away?
 

Mackania

Well-Known Member
Ive seen Burley quite a few times doing the pundit gig over here. He isnt that bad. At least he doesnt sound like one of the bitter tramp ex-players like most of them.
You must not remember his punditry from back in the day. His abuse of Weiss particularly memorable for me. He once criticised his delivery on a corner we actually scored from, such was his stupidity.
 

Timardim

Well-Known Member
Look any treble, treble is an achievement despite no real challenge. You still need to be pretty consistent and not drop standards for 3 seasons. They didn't get a quadruple treble because lets be honest here that title win last year is not valid. I will not accept that decision particularly with the form we have returned in and the form they have put in. Plus when you look at the turnaround in the Portuguese League of a similar gap you just cannot see any justification for calling the league.

The problem I have with Celtic over the last 10 years is the media have tried to make them out to be this great team, Brown the best captain since Billy McNeil, Rogic a world beater, Ajer the new Baresi etc. There has been too much adulation for a team that has literally achieved nothing when challenged in Europe. They are a good SPL side but they are not a great team, a great team would've qualified for the CL each year, and some of those years they would've got into the last 16 at least and for the rest they would've went into the Europa last 32 each year. However that has not been the case, if anything they have been an embarrassment in Europe suffering some large defeats to minnows and the largest defeat received by any Scottish Club in the CL.

Calling Brown the best captain since Billy McNeil is laughable. If it wasn't for Rangers going down to the 4th Tier Brown would've been out on his arse probably playing the English Championship because he was out of favour, Celtic fans thought he was shit, the Celtic Management team thought he was shit. He was outclassed in midfield in most Old firm games by Edu, Davis, Ferguson and Thomson. He was invisible, he has only became visible because he is coming up against guys that are not of a very good standard. In Europe he disappears again because he is just chasing shadows as technically better players just pass it round him with ease. He is a headless chicken, who is sole purpose on that pitch is to wind people up with bully boy antics. That is not a captain, that is basic footballer and a wannabe thug.

They tried to promote Brown for the Australian market last season but nobody was interested , and not surprisingly our press shrouded it as if he was happy to stay and didn't need to be persuaded to spend his twilight years at the piggery.
 

douzpwa

Well-Known Member
Full text below but this is the highlight:


“You can win all the titles you want when nobody is putting you under pressure but the first year that Rangers have upped their game, and the points will tell you that, Celtic have been found wanting.

“That’s why I take all the glory, glory stuff like the quadruple Treble with a pinch of salt. Yes, they still had to win them but how were they going to handle a serious challenge?"

EDIT: Honourable mention to £5m for Scheidt :cool:
He is spot on where Hugh Keekins would have you believe it was an astonishing achievement!
 

rfcforever

Well-Known Member
The problem I have with Celtic over the last 10 years is the media have tried to make them out to be this great team, Brown the best captain since Billy McNeil, Rogic a world beater, Ajer the new Baresi etc. There has been too much adulation for a team that has literally achieved nothing when challenged in Europe. They are a good SPL side but they are not a great team, a great team would've qualified for the CL each year, and some of those years they would've got into the last 16 at least and for the rest they would've went into the Europa last 32 each year. However that has not been the case, if anything they have been an embarrassment in Europe suffering some large defeats to minnows and the largest defeat received by any Scottish Club in the CL.
After the zoom conference awarded them 9 in a row, I heard Radio Scotland debating whether the modern 9 in a row team were better than the Stein team.

Wish I could remember who took part but I do recall at least one clown making a case for the Lennon/Deila/Rodgers/Lennon team.

There must have been more toilet roll than turd polish in the shops around Pacific Quay that week :)
 

Atheist Bear

Well-Known Member
It's funny how it's always the ones outside of Scotland that speak truths. On the other hand if they stay in their wee indoctrinated echo chamber, they all stay on message until the realities are unavoidable.
I’ve noticed this in regards to tims who go out into the wider world. Kevin Bridges, James McAvoy etc. don’t seem to have any bitterness about them. Which I understand. When I went on holiday to America, it struck me how insignificant our little rivalry here was in the grand scheme of things. Whereas like how the worst anti smokers are ex smokers, there’s nothing worse than the enthusiastic convert ala Rod Stewart.
 
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