sport news STEPHEN MCGOWAN: The legacy of the Lisbon Lions is being dismantled by Celtic ... trends now

sport news STEPHEN MCGOWAN: The legacy of the Lisbon Lions is being dismantled by Celtic ... trends now
sport news STEPHEN MCGOWAN: The legacy of the Lisbon Lions is being dismantled by Celtic ... trends now

sport news STEPHEN MCGOWAN: The legacy of the Lisbon Lions is being dismantled by Celtic ... trends now

Hours before Celtic slid to their latest Champions League defeat in Rome, reports emerged of an interest in Portuguese Under-21 international Tiago Araujo.

A former Benfica B team-mate of ex-Hoops winger Jota and current loanee Paulo Bernardo, the 22-year-old signed for Estoril at the start of the season.

In terms of his age, international experience and £4million price tag, Araujo now represents the archetypal Celtic signing, meeting the criteria applied to almost all of their recent acquisitions.

And the consequences of that policy were evident once again in Tuesday night’s 2-0 defeat to Lazio.

‘It’s a little bit of the same old story,’ admitted captain Callum McGregor afterwards. ‘Play well, don’t take chances, then get hit by the sucker punch. The second one ends the game and, listen, it’s tough to take.’

Celtic are dismantling the legacy of the Lisbon Lions after setting an unwanted European record

Celtic are dismantling the legacy of the Lisbon Lions after setting an unwanted European record

The Bhoys are renowned for becoming the first British side to win the European Cup in 1967

Brendan Rodgers side have now become the first British side to go 15 games without a win in the competition

The first British side to win European football’s most coveted club trophy have now become the first British club to go 15 games without winning a game in the competition. The proud legacy of the Lisbon Lions is being dismantled by an embarrassing record in Europe.

Since securing qualification for the last 16 of the Champions League under Neil Lennon in December 2012, the Parkhead outfit have played 29 group-stage games. Of the 29, they have won two, drawn six and lost 21, taking 12 points from a possible 87 with a goal difference of minus 57.

Extend the stats to all UEFA competitions and knock-out games and the record over the last decade is 16 wins from 31 Champions League, 44 Europa League and two Conference League ties. The last win of any description in the Champions League was six years ago.

When Brendan Rodgers agreed to return to Glasgow in the summer, he spoke of restoring the club to a competitive level in Europe. While that was always likely to take time, Celtic are now a club so focused on the future that the present feels like an afterthought.

The Scottish outfit have a woeful record in the Champions League - their last win coming six years ago

The Scottish outfit have a woeful record in the Champions League - their last win coming six years ago

The timing of injuries to Cameron Carter-Vickers, Reo Hatate and Liel Abada contributed to a record of one point from five games in this campaign but can’t obscure the bigger picture.

Since the summer of 2022, the club have signed 23 players. Too many contribute little to a bloated, inexperienced squad unable to cope with the demands of the Champions League.

Of the nine players signed in the summer window, Maik Nawrocki, Gustaf Lagerbielke and Kwon Hyeok-kyun struggle to make the first-team squad.

Wingers Luis Palma and Yang have offered signs of promise but little in the way of consistency.

Midfielder Odin Thiago Holm lasted 45 minutes against Motherwell. Nat Phillips, Paulo Bernardo and Marco Tilio have yet to show much at all.

Celtic clearly have a bloated and inexperienced squad after being dumped out by Lazio

Celtic clearly have a bloated and inexperienced squad after being dumped out by Lazio

Speaking after Ciro Immobile’s late goals sealed victory for an underwhelming Lazio side, Rodgers spoke of a ‘glaring’ need for more quality. The underlying message to directors was hard to miss.

Celtic’s board will spend a large

read more from dailymail.....

PREV sport news Cathy Freeman poses with Mary Fowler in surprise appearance at Matildas game as ... trends now
NEXT Early Brentford bullseye but Spurs go fourth after Ange stroke of genius mogaznewsen