Another Champions League campaign has come and gone and, once again, it is the same old issues that have left Celtic fans scratching their heads.
Out of the competition with a game to go, it’s been another European campaign where fans have had very little to cheer, but with the same demons rearing their ugly head year after year, something has to change soon.
Fans have pointed their fingers at the Celtic board, something that has been a familiar theme following Celtic’s European failures, with the lack of European calibre signings in the summer transfer window setting the team up for yet another fall.
But what do Celtic need to change to finally make that European progress that the fans and the manager are so desperate to see?
One thing that has come under lots of criticism from supporters over the last few years has been the club’s transfer approach. Fans were pointing out over the course of the summer that there was a distinct lack of players to make a real impact at the highest level.
When you analyse the signings Celtic made in the summer and look at the impact they had on the team in Europe’s premier competition, the only player you could really argue that has done just that is Luis Palma. Fans would like the club to spend more money on a higher quality of player, speculate to accumulate as the saying goes.
The players who never looked out of place last season were the likes of Jota and Cameron Carter-Vickers, two additions who Celtic paid a higher fee for whilst still sticking to the already established transfer model at the club.
If Celtic wish to make some further progress, spending more money on higher-value and higher-quality players will allow the side to compete with a higher calibre of opposition and spare the fans from further embarrassment when watching their team in Europe.
Another thing that has been an evident stumbling block for Celtic in Europe has been adjusting from playing domestically against teams of lesser quality. The step-up physically and mentally when facing some of Europe’s powerhouses in the Champions League is something the team has never managed to handle.
Whether it is an inferiority complex or just a struggle for motivation, Brendan Rodgers has to find a way to translate the winning mentality the team operates with domestically to the Champions League, as the team offers far too much respect to the opponents.
Be more clinical
The final key that Celtic needs to fix the performances in Europe is to be more clinical in front of goal. After every game there is always a moment that has fans scratching their heads and left wondering ‘what if?’ following the game.
The likes of Kyogo Furuhashi and Daizen Maeda have passed up some massive opportunities in Europe over the last few years and that is something that needs to be fixed in a competition where chances are going to be at a premium.
JAMES MCKENZIE // Follow James HERE