Sandman’s Definitive Ratings – Celtic v Jesus Juice


Kyogo Furuhashi celebrates scoring his team’s third goal during the the Celtic v Buckie Thistle – Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on January 21, 2024 (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

‘When the tempest rages,
In the rock of ages
I will safely hide;
Though the earth be shaking,
And all hearts be quaking,
Celtic is at my side.’

– Johann (Mjallby) Franck.

Celtic v Buckie Thistle –  Celtic goalkeeper Joe Hart and Buckie Thistle goalkeeper Stuart Knight  shake hands following the Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park,  Sunday January 21, 2024. Photo Andrew Milligan

ROXIE – 7/10 – “I’ll bet on big Joe havin’ heehaw to d…” And blushes get spared by the classic Daniel Day Lewis stop with My Left Bit. Another example of experienced top class goalkeeping to annoy the armchair Lev Yashins. Sadly, their hardworking striker will replay that golden chance in his dreams for decades to come…I say ‘sadly’ if he’s of Hooped persuasion; if he’s a throbbing Heelan’ Horrible I’ll take comfort in it haunting the Zombie to his grave…

GREGGS THE BAKER – 6/10 – Industrious day gilded by opening the scoring. Whit? Offside, you say? Did he have a sausage roll sticking out his gub? That’s about the only way he was beyond the comical VAR crayons – mysteriously drawn across a more acute angle than the one a dozen TV replays used. Hmm…

Celtic v Buckie Thistle –  Celtic’s Alistair Johnston left and Buckie Thistle Max Barry battle for the ball during the Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on Sunday January 21, 2024. Photo Andrew Milligan

WAYNE GRETZKY – 6/10 – Rough Northerners are his bread and butter. Sentimental flashbacks to wrestling ice truckers and lumberjacks for fresh Caribou meat as he spent an afternoon hustling well in the tempest.

OF JUSTICE – 5.5/10 – Picked the right game for a couple of lazy lapses, busted wrong side for their outstanding moment, but no real worries through an easy 90 minutes.

APOLLO CREED – 6/10 – Another with room to ease back into competitive football while the game was played mostly in front of him. Required only to tidy and step in for a high press.

Celtic v Buckie Thistle – Celtic’s Paulo Bernardo celebrates scoring the opening goal of the game during the Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on Sunday January 21, 2024. Photo Andrew Milligan

SAINT BERNARDO – 7/10 – A grafter and a grifter – has an active, languid style as he lopes about impersonating Matty, yet shares the same class of wily touch and movement as demonstrated in his delightful dink.

THE BUILDER – 8/10 MOTM – The difference engine; dodgy Paradise pitch requiring a gifted footballer to deliver the killing blows. And up stepped the Anglo-Dane to slide in through ball after through ball as handsome as his mirror.

Odin Holm scores his team’s second goal during the Celtic v Buckie Thistle Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on January 21, 2024. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

THE ALLFATHER – 7/10 – Yes, this kid can play football alright – his first instinct coupled with a competitive nature. Not fazed by the Calmac responsibility, he dropped and prompted then iced the already freezing day with a sumptuous one-two before firing in his first Hoops goal. More to come.

Luis Palma keeping a count on the offside goal decisions. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

BRIAN DE – 6.5/10 – ‘Mercurial’ is the preferred hack expression for Louie’s particular style of play; but he’s as volatile as Prince Andrew’s hard drive, and will subvert your expectations of wonder with the touch of the Staypuft Marshmallow Man before drifting about looking dislocated like yer midlife-crisis Uncle at a teenage house party, then suddenly spark celebrations with a swish of his standing foot to rifle in a belter.

Kyogo Furuhashi celebrates scoring his team’s third goal during the Celtic v Buckie Thistle – Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on January 21, 2024 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

KILLER MUSHROOM – 6.5/10 – All it took was a touch. Kyogo is inevitable, as the Buckie village witch had predicted. The voodoo was upon him when he missed a sitter early but no amount of bodies in the box can stop one of such intuitive movement and – ping! – the ubiquitous strike to dispel the Heelan’ hex.

We’ve got Abada he’s on the Wong, we’re got Kyogo doin’ his thing…(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

ABADASS – 7/10 – Almost a De Palma frustration replica wing-for-wing as Liel returned from injury for a serious 90-minute rebuild. It seemed early on that he’d forgotten all about the offside rule as the linesman got a real workout for his self-pleasuring arm. But once the wee mhan had his timing right, in he scurried and laid one on a plate with an inch-perfect slip to Kyogo.


Mikey Johnston celebrates his assist for Rocco Vata’s first senior goal. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

MIKEY J – 6.5/10 – “Aw naw, whit’s he doin’ on the park aga… Aw, choo-choo! Magic Mikey!”

TONY THE TIGER – N/A – Grr…As if Celtic Park wasn’t scary enough for the Wildlings, we throw in the Tiger too.

RAQUEL – N/A – Welcome back to the glamour. Next game ye might get a touch of the ball as well.

A special moment for Rocco Vata as he scores his first senior goal for Celtic (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

VALUE ADDED TAX – 6.5/10 – Play the kid! Let him have the chance to stake his claim! About time Rocco got a fair shout and he presented a good argument for retaining burgeoning talent with a finish born of smart striking play, and took an obligatory yellow to make the MIB feel better about his drenching.

Daniel Kelly during the Celtic v Buckie Thistle – Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on January 21, 2024. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

NED KELLY – N/A – Good competitive game-time for the young Aussie outlaw. Yes, maybe he’s not Antipodean in the slightest but let’s go along with it for the sake of this cheap name gag…

THE SHNAKE – 7/10 – No win situation – make sure the team’s on it and the result’s what the fans get for turning up in the midst of a hurricane. And he did on both counts; so everyone goes home happy.

MIBBERY – 3/10 – Nice try with the VAR lines drawn by David Blunket, but the relentlessness of the Hoops was the unstoppable force the black monolithic objects couldn’t resist. They tried, though, with 36 goals disallowed for offside…In the end they just picked on one of the young ‘uns to flash an undeserved card at, for stamping on… the grass. Where was yer VAR scrutiny there?

OVERALL – 7/10 – A winter break ended by Buckie. Not seen since the post-festive return to High School and Father McCluskey’s ‘choir practice’…”Here, have some o’ this – it’ll relax yer vocal cords.”

The game you could write your own jokes to soon as the draw was made. Our job was to make sure the jokes stopped at the first whistle. And thus the job was done. As competitive contests go, it was Ali v Fraser; The Fraser in this case being the Heelan’ Private Fraser from ‘Dads Army’.

As expected the Bhoys blew Buckie away as a prelude to the incoming storm. As expected, Buckie didn’t buckle – resilient bunch of decent players who maintained an admirable focus throughout and kept great discipline in the face of terrifyingly disproportionate ability. And fair play to their fan contingent for en mass support to shame SPL away mobs. And also for proof that even in the interbred, godforsaken Northern reaches there’s still no mutations of nature to match the ugly Zombies.

 Daniel Kelly vies with Stuart Knight of Buckie Thistle during the Celtic v Buckie Thistle – Scottish Cup match at Celtic Park on January 21, 2024. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Kudos to their chunky purple-people-eater keeper who’s overtrained on the Kit-Kats but didn’t get a break (see what I did there, advertising slogan fans?) as he lost two stone just keeching (Highland term) himself every time we rampaged towards his box. But he was smiling the 90 and pulled off some really fine stops to keep the score more than respectable.

So a fine day out was had by all and we get a useful introduction back into competitive footy and low-block demolition. On we go, new signings incoming, eyes on the prizes.

Go Away Now



About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

1 Comment

  1. Patrick Cullen on

    All the players deserve passmarks for playing in that storm ,hope the BUCKIE BHOYS GOT HOME OK and also the BHOYS from up north