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Interesting to see how the current squad are doing during the winter break in fixtures. Barring injuries to the likes of Cooper, Armstrong and Jack which will reduce their playing time, and now Gilmour (for a few weeks only hopefully) there doesn't seem to be that many newbies that would be likely to break into the squad. A lot of the 'mainstays' seem to be doing well - McGinn, Robertson, Gordon, McTominay, Tierney. Patterson has pretty much sealed his place even without much playing time, Hanley is back now and McGregor will also be hard to shift. Dykes and Adams are not scoring freely at present but Scotland form last year was part of our success. Brown hasn't scored much since being picked but Christie is doing well at top of the table Bournemouth.  So it is probably only a few that might stand a chance of breaking into the squad for a potential world cup place - if any. Good to see Marshall make a move to give himself a chance of getting back in and I know Ross Stewart is certainly banging them in but anyone else think there is someone else out there that you think might break in?

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2 hours ago, gkm_vancouver said:

Interesting to see how the current squad are doing during the winter break in fixtures. Barring injuries to the likes of Cooper, Armstrong and Jack which will reduce their playing time, and now Gilmour (for a few weeks only hopefully) there doesn't seem to be that many newbies that would be likely to break into the squad. A lot of the 'mainstays' seem to be doing well - McGinn, Robertson, Gordon, McTominay, Tierney. Patterson has pretty much sealed his place even without much playing time, Hanley is back now and McGregor will also be hard to shift. Dykes and Adams are not scoring freely at present but Scotland form last year was part of our success. Brown hasn't scored much since being picked but Christie is doing well at top of the table Bournemouth.  So it is probably only a few that might stand a chance of breaking into the squad for a potential world cup place - if any. Good to see Marshall make a move to give himself a chance of getting back in and I know Ross Stewart is certainly banging them in but anyone else think there is someone else out there that you think might break in?

I think both Souttar and Ralston might retain their places in the squad. Both already broken in, but may stay in. You'd expect Marshall to go straight back in. Though Gordon should rightfully retain the number 1 jersey.

I'd be surprised if many, if any, new faces were added for March. We'll need that camaraderie between the core squad to get us through the playoffs. 

Worst case scenario if we only have 1 game. So an enlarged squad wouldn't make sense and I don't think anyone will be getting dropped. The quadruple header in June is another matter though. I'd be calling up as many new faces as possible. Hickey being the obvious one. 

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8 hours ago, Tartan blood said:

I think both Souttar and Ralston might retain their places in the squad. Both already broken in, but may stay in. You'd expect Marshall to go straight back in. Though Gordon should rightfully retain the number 1 jersey.

I'd be surprised if many, if any, new faces were added for March. We'll need that camaraderie between the core squad to get us through the playoffs. 

Worst case scenario if we only have 1 game. So an enlarged squad wouldn't make sense and I don't think anyone will be getting dropped. The quadruple header in June is another matter though. I'd be calling up as many new faces as possible. Hickey being the obvious one. 

Souttar 100% will retain his place in the squad and quite possibly the starting team IMO. Ralston will surely take SOD place in the squad now. 

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If you are looking for players to break into the squad for the first time then the glaring option has to be Aaron Hickey. There aren't any others that I can think of although if the next squad was say five years ago for a meaningless friendly then Stewart and Sunderland was one that may have been looked at but not now. Another that may be in with an outside chance is Ryan Gauld as Clarke has spoken up his chances by saying he's being looked at.

Newly broken into the squad and certain to retain their spots are Souttar and Ralston.

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9 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

If you are looking for players to break into the squad for the first time then the glaring option has to be Aaron Hickey. There aren't any others that I can think of although if the next squad was say five years ago for a meaningless friendly then Stewart and Sunderland was one that may have been looked at but not now. Another that may be in with an outside chance is Ryan Gauld as Clarke has spoken up his chances by saying he's being looked at.

Newly broken into the squad and certain to retain their spots are Souttar and Ralston.

I don’t think Ralston will retain his spot. Celtic will replace him.  Ramsay would seem the likely challenger to Patterson with Hickey a utility player for multiple positions. 

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5 hours ago, er yir macaroon said:

I don’t think Ralston will retain his spot. Celtic will replace him.  Ramsay would seem the likely challenger to Patterson with Hickey a utility player for multiple positions. 

Cant see ralston getting replaced at celtic anytime soon. 

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1 hour ago, mccaughey85 said:

Cant see ralston getting replaced at celtic anytime soon. 

Agree. He’s on course for being the right back in the SPL team of the season.

People bang the drum here about SOD negativity but the same folk are too quick to criticise Ralston

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3 minutes ago, ProudScot said:

Agree. He’s on course for being the right back in the SPL team of the season.

People bang the drum here about SOD negativity but the same folk are too quick to criticise Ralston

Yeh seems like certain folk have it in for him. The guys doing well and deserves some credit. Doubt he will be first choice right back in the future but he could very well get some caps and be a squad regular. 

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I must have either missed or forgotten them as i can't recall many if any recent negative comments about Ralston. There might have been a few in previous seasons when his name was brought up but the lads been excellent this season & i think almost everyone on here recognises that. 

   If he keeps his club place & form he should certainly be in the squad ahead of O'donnell. 

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16 hours ago, ProudScot said:

Agree. He’s on course for being the right back in the SPL team of the season.

People bang the drum here about SOD negativity but the same folk are too quick to criticise Ralston

He’s scored a few headers but defensively he’s looked poor anytime I’ve seen him. 

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36 minutes ago, er yir macaroon said:

He’s scored a few headers but defensively he’s looked poor anytime I’ve seen him. 

You can’t have seen him much then as he’s mostly been excellent. In the old firm game, which Celtic lost, he was outstanding and kept Ryan Kent in his back pocket 

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12 minutes ago, ProudScot said:

You can’t have seen him much then as he’s mostly been excellent. In the old firm game, which Celtic lost, he was outstanding and kept Ryan Kent in his back pocket 

Seconded. I've heard some Celtic fans touting him for CB cover or RCB in a 3 because he has been so good defensively. There was a clip doing the rounds where Ralston made this absolute class flying slide tackle in a European game that stopped a goal. 

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There is obviously unlikely to be wholesale changes - subject to any injuries at the time. The back five will probably hold no great surprises - just a case of whether Clarke will replace SOD with Ralston. Porteous did make the last squad but shot himself in the foot again with his discipline.

The midfield may be a bit more uncertain. The position with Fraser at the last squad looks to at least be under question and perhaps very difficult for him to get back in, even though he is playing regularly now; Armstrong has not played much and seems to have lost his first team place; Turnbull's form also seems to have dipped a bit; so there could be a place or two up for grabs.

Good to see Brown get a goal today and with rumours of Stewart getting signed up to the Championship there may even be a possibility of a change in the forward line if his good form continues.

It will be interesting to see how their form continues for what could be a few squad places up for grabs

Edited by gkm_vancouver
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Only really what I've seen on telly highlights, but Scott McTominay seems to have hit a good patch of form, adding goal scoring to his game for Man Utd. It'll be interesting where Steve Clarke plays him. I've never been convinced with Scott in central defence. Who would he replace in an already functioning midfield?

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48 minutes ago, Montrose97 said:

Only really what I've seen on telly highlights, but Scott McTominay seems to have hit a good patch of form, adding goal scoring to his game for Man Utd. It'll be interesting where Steve Clarke plays him. I've never been convinced with Scott in central defence. Who would he replace in an already functioning midfield?

He shouldn't replace anyone in our current midfield. It has been settled and excellent. McTominay has yet to put in a stellar performance for Scotland and that matters far more to me than club form. Why? Well I've seen players turn it on for their clubs in the past yet flop for Scotland and I fear McTominay is the latest. I hope he proves me wrong but I won't hold my breath.

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2 hours ago, Montrose97 said:

Only really what I've seen on telly highlights, but Scott McTominay seems to have hit a good patch of form, adding goal scoring to his game for Man Utd. It'll be interesting where Steve Clarke plays him. I've never been convinced with Scott in central defence. Who would he replace in an already functioning midfield?

Been well debated on TAMB and there is a general view that he would not replace the current midfield three. Clarke did say he wanted to play him more in his natural midfield position but then started him in defence again in the Israel game. One possibility is that he replaces one of the front two leaving a lone striker, but that could depend on the opposition and many think we play better with a front two.

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13 hours ago, gkm_vancouver said:

There is obviously unlikely to be wholesale changes - subject to any injuries at the time. The back five will probably hold no great surprises - just a case of whether Clarke will replace SOD with Ralston. Porteous did make the last squad but shot himself in the foot again with his discipline.

The midfield may be a bit more uncertain. The position with Fraser at the last squad looks to at least be under question and perhaps very difficult for him to get back in, even though he is playing regularly now; Armstrong has not played much and seems to have lost his first team place; Turnbull's form also seems to have dipped a bit; so there could be a place or two up for grabs.

Good to see Brown get a goal today and with rumours of Stewart getting signed up to the Championship there may even be a possibility of a change in the forward line if his good form continues.

It will be interesting to see how their form continues for what could be a few squad places up for grabs

I think if Fraser had continued to be used sparingly at Newcastle, it would have been an easy decision for Clarke to make. However, he's playing regularly again, and playing well, apparently. But that doesn't mean he should be an automatic pick. Obviously we don't know what goes on behind closed doors, but I'd hope Fraser will (if he hasn't already) apologise or at least try to explain his actions to Clarke. He's too good to ignore, but no player is bigger than the team. If the likes of Robertson, Tierney and McGinn turn up to every squad, then Fraser has no excuse.

I don't think there will be any new names for the March squad. I do think Clarke will be forced to have a bigger squad for the quadruple header though. That's the one I'll be very interested in seeing.

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On 1/16/2022 at 10:19 PM, gkm_vancouver said:

Been well debated on TAMB and there is a general view that he would not replace the current midfield three. Clarke did say he wanted to play him more in his natural midfield position but then started him in defence again in the Israel game. One possibility is that he replaces one of the front two leaving a lone striker, but that could depend on the opposition and many think we play better with a front two.

Maybe 'replace' was the wrong word for me to use. He's still only 25 and I certainly think he'll have a role to play going forward.  Football these days is all about making full use of your squad and, as you say, the opposition.

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