Friday, July 18, 2008

The Pitfalls of a Prophet

Aiden McGeady yesterday signed a new five year deal that will keep him at Celtic until after his 27th birthday.

After signing on the dotted line McGeady said:

"I want to be remembered in the club's history rather than just a player who had a couple of good seasons and then jumped ship. The thought of being a legend is a bit far away just now, but that's what I'd like to be remembered as."

Good on him. Nothing in football is as simple as that of course. We'd all profess our love for our emplyers if we were offered the kind of enhanced deal that, I'd guess, young Aiden has just been given.

But why do footballers insist on making these pronouncements. How long before McGeady leaves and those words come back to bite him on the bum?

And, more pertinently, why do we as fans believe anything that our heroes tell us anymore?

Goalie Moly

The whole sorry search for a keeper at Easter Road continues. After Phil Imray, recently of the mighty Wellington in New Zealand, did little to impress against Raith he has joined young Ivorian Lamine Meite in being shown the exit door.

Neither triallist impressed Mixu Paatelainen more than what he's already got. What he's already got is calamity prone Yves Makalambay, gaffe prone Andy McNeill and untried Robert Grof. How bad can the other two be?

Seriously, though, the travails of the goalkeepers at Easter Road point to a wider malaise at the club. When a club that has the pretensions of Hibs can - rumour has it - only afford to sign a player if they can sell a player of the stature of Clayton Donaldson then something is wrong.

The natives are getting restless. Many feel Mixu is not the answer. Most would appear to feel that he is definitely not the answer if the board continue to insist that the manager of Hibs must be skilled in doing his job with one hand tied behind his back.

How long before the fans start to vote with their feet? The message to Rod Petrie is a simple one: you can't play a training ground or a shiny new stand in the first team.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Friendly Fire

The pre season is in full swing now with the SPL clubs getting their preparations for the season fully underway.

A quick roundup:

After the disaster of the Intertoto Cup Hibs were held to a no scoring draw against Raith. Good news for the Hibs fans: There was a mystery triallist in goals. Bad news for the Hibs fans: He was 24 year old Phil Imray of Team Wellington in New Zealand. The Hibees crying out for an experienced keeper look set to be disappointed as the board continue to hoard the biscuit tin.

New Hearts manager Csabo Lazlo also tasted disappointment in Fife with the Jambos losing 1-0 to Dunfermline. Lazlo played Michael Stewart in the supporting role behind lone striker Gary Glen. Lazlo, however, would prefer to play two orthodox strikers so he may well be borrowing Mixu's begging bowl before long. Top marks to the Scotsman's Anthony Brown, incidentally, for calling a corner "a flag kick" and returning match reporting to the 1940's.

Rangers came from behind to beat Lotte 3-1 with Kris Boyd (surprise, surprise) and John Fleck the scorers. Andreas Velicka started up front and there was also a welcome return for Andy Webster. With Rangers in action in the Champion's League qualifiers in a fortnight it remains to be seen if Boyd can cement his place in Walter Smith's starting 11.

All of this is, of course, pretty much meaningless. But at least it's football!