Joey Barton & Brendan Rodgers; let the games begin

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In the past 24 hours we have seen Rangers confirm the signing of the biggest name we have since Croatia’s Nikica Jelavic, and maybe even further back, while over at the East End Celtic confirmed ex-Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers as their new coach.

Whatever fans of both teams think of the other side, and my goodness have we not heard an opinion or two one way or another, you have to admit it has made next season’s Premiership the most interesting in many years.

And by many years, I even include pre-admin Rangers.

Celtic have, to their credit, secured a real name as their manager, and one who came within a ‘slip’ of winning the EPL title. Meanwhile Rangers have managed Scottish football’s biggest player signing for many, many years in the guise of the venerable Mr Barton, who probably becomes the SPFL’s best player without even having put his boots on for us yet.

Add to this the obvious spice of the return of Rangers overall to Scotland’s top flight, and it equals the most intriguing SPL for a long time, with subplots a-plenty.

Will Barton be a calming leader who takes Rangers up a level, or will he revert to the combustible stereotype of his earlier career? Will Rodgers regain the stock he significantly lost at the tail end of his tenure at Anfield and turn Celtic into something resembling their noughties form under the likes of Martin O’Neill? Will Mark Warburton cope with the step up to the SPL and the changes he will need to adapt to in order to thrive? Will Barton and Scott Brown have a tussle during next season’s Old Firm clashes? Who will prevail?

These are only some of the competitive subplots currently brewing nicely.

Then we have the incredible squad turnover at Ibrox over the past few weeks.

Out has gone Nicky Clark, Nicky Law, Gedion Zelalem, Dominic Ball and David Templeton, and in have come Barton and ex-Liverpool midfielder Jordan Rossiter, with heavy speculation linking Croatian playmaker Niko Kranjcar with a move to Govan as well.

We also expect Dean Shiels to follow the departures with his contract due to expire at the end of next month, although Cammy Bell’s position is less clear.

Meanwhile we must not forget the former Accrington Stanley pair of Matt Crooks and Josh Windass who are due to link up at Ibrox imminently.

It all makes up for an SPL people are suddenly interested in again. Obviously, this is pure and simply because Rangers are back in it. No more. No less. The sponsorship deals, the improved calibre of signings; none would be possible if Rangers were not back at the top tier, so Scottish football owes Mark Warburton, Frank McParland and David Weir a huge token of gratitude along with the board for getting them.

Somehow, though, I doubt any appreciation will be forthcoming!

But nevertheless, we have an SPL to actually care about for once – the Old Firm is back, Barton will be in it, and Mark Warburton and Brendan Rodgers will lock horns.

Let the games begin.

32 COMMENTS

  1. What about King, Billy/Billy King….should we sign him? I haven't seen much of him but hear good reports.

  2. I'm still laughing that Celtic havnt brought Lennon back… Next season he will be their Walter smith when Rodgers fails big time. He's a manager who had a good run with Swansea but hasn't done anything else. Yes he almost won the epl but his team choked and blew it, and then did nothin after that and have went from one of England's best team to a mid table team under him. And before that he lasted 6 months at reading. Sad to say but the team that's most worrying next year is hearts who are quietly building.
    We still need a new defense before we can even dream of winning at the 1st chance. Or at least a defender like weir who can organise the defense and bring Wilson bk to the player he should be

    • Im still laughing at Lennons desperate attempts to get the Celtic Job when he was on the BBC commentating on a game, He was whoring himself for it but to no avail, Ha HA

  3. Badly need a right back who can defend,2 solid centre halfs and a goalscorer,I'm not convinced about Barrie mackay he flatters to deceive and rarely beats his marker,I just don't get all this hype about him.think windass will be great along with young rossiter,we still need another 5 or 6 in tho.

    WATP

    • What a sad tormented soul you are Nathan , ever thought about getting help ,everyone on here wants to talk football but once again you come up from the gutter to embarrass all the decent fans on here,Why don't you just go away,

    • who was that guy trying to take that young child away before his dad turned up please call police if you know him it could be your child next

    • Why should I go away? I'd rather remind all the trolls how filthy their lot really is.

      Google it: Rodgers was caught with a tranny hooker. How fitting for a Celtic manager.

  4. a can see celtic now signing British players not just them killie and other spl teams signing a lot of English players as thay have seen the season Rangers have had,lets hope the fans start coming back to the games and then get better tv deal of sky&bt and we need to do better in europe aswell then scottish game will be back to its best,lets hope good times ahead

    • Agree, I'd say 2 players Deluded Brendan will look to bring in are Nathan Dyer (on loan at Leicester last year but only played 1 game) and Leon Britton (turns 34 in Sept). Both are very good players. I don't see us winning the title next season, but the year after, yes. It's not only Septic we need to worry about…Aberdeen and Hearts are no mugs, and there are one or two other banana skins in there.

  5. I think we'll win it next season but that lot have still got a very good manager in that cunt let's keep the heeds doon and get on with the job getting us back to the the champions league

    • Nothing wrong with being optimistic – hopefully you will be able to cope ok when it does not work out.

  6. Our defence is so, so Bad.
    We have two FB's who cannot tackle and two CB's who cannot header ?

    We are going to Have to sort out the whole back four, then think about midfield and attack, imo.(AL63)

  7. @ stuart bowman,

    My goodness, you are not wrong, it took Bren-dan to spend over two hundred million quid to turn a kinda half decent Liverpool side into a bad one. It seems that once he put what we saw as 'his' players into his side that they just became really poor, did cfc miss this event then ? (Al63)

  8. It's quite easy to manage a team when you have pots of money.But Rodgers proved that old adage wrong. So on that note let's hope he spunks the "green and white shits" money and puts them where they belong, which is under us. WATP

  9. It doesn't matter who they get, we must defend better, I'm 100% behind MW/DW and I'm sure they will sort it, but Rodgers is only on a 12 month contract, if he does well he'll be wanted in EPL if doesn't do well will "they" give a new contract? it's a strange situation, not the strangest in their history though.

  10. As if Brenda's soapy smile wasn't soapy enough, he then goes and fries his skin, which accentuates his Hollywood chaps even more. He looked like a California tomato with a Tippex smile painted on it.

  11. Joey and his agent are going to be very busy making sure all those social media tweets are deleted before someone re tweets them.

    Royal family are parasites.

    In favour of a united Ireland

    And yes he blesses himself entering and leaving the park.

    • Couldn't care less. It just makes it all the more sweet to see him in a Rangers shirt. Remember Super Mo? Love him to this day. Hahaha, legend.

  12. Aye bring it on ,,, Not sure if you may have seen this but the SFA have placed us as 2nd seeds in the League Cup…Really !!!!!! before Motherwell and ICT …How many times have we won this bloody tournament…No Fucking Respect again !!!!!!

    • We have no voices in the establishment or parliment. This will continue as long as the SNP are in power. Nothing sadder than Rangers fans voting for people who hate them.

    • The SNP does not hate Rangers or Rangers fans. That is a fact. You sound like you could be one of the idiots who defamed the Club at George Square when the Referendum results were in. I doubt you have read a book in your life, aside from the odd sporting autobiography, and Trainspotting.

    • No? So I guess all of the SNP councillors and MSP's spouting off about 'sevco' and 'huns' just love us? I guess you haven't heard of Brendan O'Hara or Christopher McEleny.

      I guess all of the courting of Irish Republicans is supposed to show their solidarity with us?

      I guess the fact that the OBAF was pushed through using 'testimony' from notorious Rangers haters like Spiers, and disproportionatley targets Rangers songs and fans, while letting the scum sing 'hun' all they want, shows how fond of us they are?

      I guess the deafining scilence from the First Minister and SNP MSP's during the fianaical troubles, or the recent crowd troubles was a showing of solidarity?

      All of the recent insitutional hatred of the club has come out of thin air?

      What an absurd statement you have made. The evidence points the other way. Perhaps that is why you went straight for the ad hominem attack. Tell me, are you a member of that wretched party?

    • Defamed the club at George square? We had to put up with months of abuse from these people prior to the vote. You need to have a long look in the mirror. Why would they not hate us? And it's perfectly clear they do

    • let me make a suggestion , I think all my fellow bears should ignore Nathan Cockerham and his posts , he is obviously suffering from paranoia as he thinks the whole world is against us ,

    • Why is that? Because I provided evidence for my position where you didn't?

      Not only can you not put forth a coherent argument, you also can't read. Nowhere did I say 'the whole world is against us'. What I said is that the evidence shows that the SNP is against us. Anyone who denies this, and also supports Rangers, has some major issues to deal with.

  13. Where the hell is Mark Warburton. I'm really starting to worry about this. I can see David Weir in the hot seat next season and I don't know if I like it.

    • He's on holiday in the US with his family as far as I'm aware. I know what you mean though…with clubs like Everton still without a boss (and a billionaire owner who can give a new manager whatever he wants), it's a worry. But I don't think Barton would have signed if he wasn't 100% sure Warbs would stay?

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