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The Positives


Caledonian Craig
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We are aware of our shortcomings in attack where we lack a true international striker at present but it is now apparent, even through reading threads on the TAMB, that we have a growing amount of competition for places where we were once toiling to fill spots.

For example at right wing-back we have Nathan Patterson and Stephen O'Donnell in competition for that place and both have proven they can do a good job there. In the centre of defence the emergence of Jack Hendry and return to fitness of Grant Hanley coupled with Tierney slotting in on the left of the back three means we have competition there with Lee Cooper chomping at the bit for a place and other able deputies Declan Gallagher and Scott McKenna waiting in the wings. Lets not forget that Scott McTominay (on his return) will be another highly capable option.

In midfield we have started to see the forming of a good partnership with Gilmour and McGregor gelling well with McGinn ahead of them. Some fans feel McTominay could do a job in there too plus there is Ryan Jack to consider when he returns from injury and on the fringes there is Kenny McLean.

The attacking midfield role also has competition in the form of Ryan Christie and Ryan Fraser with the in-form David Turnbull also awaiting his chance.

In the goalkeeping department it is hard to judge how we are at the moment. Gordon has the experience and current No 1 but he cannot have long left in him. Zander Clark and Liam Kelly could be forced into the side should Gordon pick up an injury and how they'd fair at international level is anybody's guess.

Obviously, attack is where the quality is not so high with Dykes and Adams being much of a muchness but even so Nisbet offers us competition. It is just a shame the quality levels aren't higher in attack.

All in all we are building strength in depth in most areas and with the emergence of other youngsters such as Aaron Hickey and Josh Doig then it keeps things ticking over nicely.

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55 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

We are aware of our shortcomings in attack where we lack a true international striker at present but it is now apparent, even through reading threads on the TAMB, that we have a growing amount of competition for places where we were once toiling to fill spots.

For example at right wing-back we have Nathan Patterson and Stephen O'Donnell in competition for that place and both have proven they can do a good job there. In the centre of defence the emergence of Jack Hendry and return to fitness of Grant Hanley coupled with Tierney slotting in on the left of the back three means we have competition there with Lee Cooper chomping at the bit for a place and other able deputies Declan Gallagher and Scott McKenna waiting in the wings. Lets not forget that Scott McTominay (on his return) will be another highly capable option.

In midfield we have started to see the forming of a good partnership with Gilmour and McGregor gelling well with McGinn ahead of them. Some fans feel McTominay could do a job in there too plus there is Ryan Jack to consider when he returns from injury and on the fringes there is Kenny McLean.

The attacking midfield role also has competition in the form of Ryan Christie and Ryan Fraser with the in-form David Turnbull also awaiting his chance.

In the goalkeeping department it is hard to judge how we are at the moment. Gordon has the experience and current No 1 but he cannot have long left in him. Zander Clark and Liam Kelly could be forced into the side should Gordon pick up an injury and how they'd fair at international level is anybody's guess.

Obviously, attack is where the quality is not so high with Dykes and Adams being much of a muchness but even so Nisbet offers us competition. It is just a shame the quality levels aren't higher in attack.

All in all we are building strength in depth in most areas and with the emergence of other youngsters such as Aaron Hickey and Josh Doig then it keeps things ticking over nicely.

I wouldn't discount Anthony Ralston from staking a claim at right back in the very near future as well. He has been one of Celtic's best players this season, in Europe especially.

The thing I am most encouraged with is that we seem to be upgrading all over the pitch. Squad players are being pushed out by vastly superior talent:

Patterson>Palmer, Gilmour>Fleck, Adams>McBurnie, Turnbull>C.Paterson

I no longer fear an injury to a first team regular, because their backup is either similar quality or poised to surpass them.

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42 minutes ago, Tartan blood said:

I wouldn't discount Anthony Ralston from staking a claim at right back in the very near future as well. He has been one of Celtic's best players this season, in Europe especially.

The thing I am most encouraged with is that we seem to be upgrading all over the pitch. Squad players are being pushed out by vastly superior talent:

Patterson>Palmer, Gilmour>Fleck, Adams>McBurnie, Turnbull>C.Paterson

I no longer fear an injury to a first team regular, because their backup is either similar quality or poised to surpass them.

Yes I agree. Where we need further upgrades are in attack and perhaps in the goalkeeper department but that is because at international level Zander Clark and Liam Kelly are untried and unproven.

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Agree - lots of positives indeed. 
 

If we can just uncover a couple of top class strikers in the next few years we would be very well set up.  
 

If you look at the goalscoring records of the Israel strikers and the clubs they play for you can see the difference it makes having that bit of quality up front. 

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3 hours ago, Caledonian Craig said:

We are aware of our shortcomings in attack where we lack a true international striker at present but it is now apparent, even through reading threads on the TAMB, that we have a growing amount of competition for places where we were once toiling to fill spots.

For example at right wing-back we have Nathan Patterson and Stephen O'Donnell in competition for that place and both have proven they can do a good job there. In the centre of defence the emergence of Jack Hendry and return to fitness of Grant Hanley coupled with Tierney slotting in on the left of the back three means we have competition there with Lee Cooper chomping at the bit for a place and other able deputies Declan Gallagher and Scott McKenna waiting in the wings. Lets not forget that Scott McTominay (on his return) will be another highly capable option.

In midfield we have started to see the forming of a good partnership with Gilmour and McGregor gelling well with McGinn ahead of them. Some fans feel McTominay could do a job in there too plus there is Ryan Jack to consider when he returns from injury and on the fringes there is Kenny McLean.

The attacking midfield role also has competition in the form of Ryan Christie and Ryan Fraser with the in-form David Turnbull also awaiting his chance.

In the goalkeeping department it is hard to judge how we are at the moment. Gordon has the experience and current No 1 but he cannot have long left in him. Zander Clark and Liam Kelly could be forced into the side should Gordon pick up an injury and how they'd fair at international level is anybody's guess.

Obviously, attack is where the quality is not so high with Dykes and Adams being much of a muchness but even so Nisbet offers us competition. It is just a shame the quality levels aren't higher in attack.

All in all we are building strength in depth in most areas and with the emergence of other youngsters such as Aaron Hickey and Josh Doig then it keeps things ticking over nicely.

Interesting you don’t mention Jon McLaughlin when you discuss goalkeepers. 

I think he’ll probably be our number 1 for at least a couple of years once Gordon retires. 

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1 minute ago, Texas Pete said:

Interesting you don’t mention Jon McLaughlin when you discuss goalkeepers. 

I think he’ll probably be our number 1 for at least a couple of years once Gordon retires. 

McLaughlin/Clark/Kelly/McCrorie I put in the same bracket. Unproven at international level so the jury is out on them - yes McLaughlin has two caps but not enough seen to be seen as proof.

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1 hour ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Yes I agree. Where we need further upgrades are in attack and perhaps in the goalkeeper department but that is because at international level Zander Clark and Liam Kelly are untried and unproven.

I would also add in Robbie McCrorie who is experienced at SPL level and recently played two must-win games back-to-back for Rangers without conceding a goal. Won't be long before he replaces McLaughlin as number 2.

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34 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

McLaughlin/Clark/Kelly/McCrorie I put in the same bracket. Unproven at international level so the jury is out on them - yes McLaughlin has two caps but not enough seen to be seen as proof.

The thing is, Gordon, McGregor and Marshall are on a completely different level to any of those names. At 18, Marshall was getting MOTM vs Barcelona and Rangers. Gordon sold for a british record to Sunderland. McGregor getting to the Europa league final and playing in the EPL in his 20s. 

From a very young age all 3 had proved they were top class internationals. None of our hopefuls are anywhere near the 3 of them. Sorry to sound negative, but we were lucky to have a golden generation of goalkeepers. On the positive side, I think we have 2-3 years left of both Gordon and Marshall

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1 minute ago, Tartan blood said:

The thing is, Gordon, McGregor and Marshall are on a completely different level to any of those names. At 18, Marshall was getting MOTM vs Barcelona and Rangers. Gordon sold for a british record to Sunderland. McGregor getting to the Europa league final and playing in the EPL in his 20s. 

From a very young age all 3 had proved they were top class internationals. None of our hopefuls are anywhere near the 3 of them. Sorry to sound negative, but we were lucky to have a golden generation of goalkeepers. On the positive side, I think we have 2-3 years left of both Gordon and Marshall

Granted it is a worrying position in the future. Plus the way the international fixtures are now (virtually no friendlies) it doesn't give much chance for us to try out younger alternatives and give them experience.

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2 hours ago, Tartan blood said:

The thing is, Gordon, McGregor and Marshall are on a completely different level to any of those names. At 18, Marshall was getting MOTM vs Barcelona and Rangers. Gordon sold for a british record to Sunderland. McGregor getting to the Europa league final and playing in the EPL in his 20s. 

From a very young age all 3 had proved they were top class internationals. None of our hopefuls are anywhere near the 3 of them. Sorry to sound negative, but we were lucky to have a golden generation of goalkeepers. On the positive side, I think we have 2-3 years left of both Gordon and Marshall

Marshall isn’t even making the bench for Derby at the moment and Gordon is nearly 39. 

Once McGregor retires (probably at the end of this season) Jon McLaughlin should be Rangers number 1 and will likely be Scotland’s first choice as well unless one of the younger guys break through. I think McLaughlin is 34 though so he’s not that much younger than Marshall. 

McCrorie looks to be our main hope of having another very good keeper I think. 

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1 hour ago, Texas Pete said:

Marshall isn’t even making the bench for Derby at the moment and Gordon is nearly 39. 

Once McGregor retires (probably at the end of this season) Jon McLaughlin should be Rangers number 1 and will likely be Scotland’s first choice as well unless one of the younger guys break through. I think McLaughlin is 34 though so he’s not that much younger than Marshall. 

McCrorie looks to be our main hope of having another very good keeper I think. 

McCrorie is the future definitely. A good loan this season and he should be back in the squad again hopefully. 

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2 hours ago, Texas Pete said:

Marshall isn’t even making the bench for Derby at the moment and Gordon is nearly 39. 

Once McGregor retires (probably at the end of this season) Jon McLaughlin should be Rangers number 1 and will likely be Scotland’s first choice as well unless one of the younger guys break through. I think McLaughlin is 34 though so he’s not that much younger than Marshall. 

McCrorie looks to be our main hope of having another very good keeper I think. 

Ideally Marshall will get a move in January.  Can't believe he didn't get a move this summer though. I'd imagine he'll do something similar to Gordon and head back to Scotland. Even if he doesn't, we'll get this season out of Gordon. Possibly next as well. 

I think it's too late for McRorie to go out on loan now, sadly. He'll be wasting the next few months, just like Marshall. Thank goodness for Gordon. 

To be fair to McCrorie, he has been getting rave reviews since he was in his teens, so definitely a lot of promise there. Fingers crossed he is our next big star, but there is no immediate rush.

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1 hour ago, Tartan blood said:

Ideally Marshall will get a move in January.  Can't believe he didn't get a move this summer though. I'd imagine he'll do something similar to Gordon and head back to Scotland. Even if he doesn't, we'll get this season out of Gordon. Possibly next as well. 

I think it's too late for McRorie to go out on loan now, sadly. He'll be wasting the next few months, just like Marshall. Thank goodness for Gordon. 

To be fair to McCrorie, he has been getting rave reviews since he was in his teens, so definitely a lot of promise there. Fingers crossed he is our next big star, but there is no immediate rush.

Marshall’s Euros and pre Euro Scotland matches vs Israel for example probably didn’t do his chances of a move very good & also explain how he’s gone from 1st to 3rd choice at his club. 

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Denmark haven’t dropped any points to our rivals, that’s a big one in helping us be second in the group so far. 

We’re able to grind out wins when not playing particular flashy but always feel we’re just one bad result away from everything being shite again. 

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15 hours ago, Tartan blood said:

The thing is, Gordon, McGregor and Marshall are on a completely different level to any of those names. At 18, Marshall was getting MOTM vs Barcelona and Rangers. Gordon sold for a british record to Sunderland. McGregor getting to the Europa league final and playing in the EPL in his 20s. 

From a very young age all 3 had proved they were top class internationals. None of our hopefuls are anywhere near the 3 of them. Sorry to sound negative, but we were lucky to have a golden generation of goalkeepers. On the positive side, I think we have 2-3 years left of both Gordon and Marshall

McGregor and Robbie McCrorie’s early careers are nearly identical.

Both had SPL loan moves and become serious options at the same age after being involved in the Scotland under 21 set up.

The next 2 seasons are key for McCrorie now to see if he can establish himself just as McGregor’s careee comes to an end.

Edited by BraveheartGordon
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6 hours ago, BraveheartGordon said:

McGregor and Robbie McCrorie’s early careers are nearly identical.

Both had SPL loan moves and become serious options at the same age after being involved in the Scotland under 21 set up.

The next 2 seasons are key for McCrorie now to see if he can establish himself just as McGregor’s careee comes to an end.

That is highly encouraging! You've got me hyped now. I actually hope McGregor retires sooner rather than later if it means McRorie gets a chance.

Goalkeepers are the same as centre backs. They (usually) take a lot longer to show their full potential. It makes it very hard to predict who will make it though. As Colin Hendry said, he is not surprised by the rise of Hanley because experience is so important for CBs. Which is why I'm so thrilled McKenna already has over a dozen caps. The exposure could be incredibly valuable long term. I'd love it if McRorie started getting included in squads over the next year or 2 as well.

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