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I don't think we have worry about the Scottish clubs having to qualify through first qualifying round vice second. The first round qualifying of UCL takes into account the UEFA Country Coefficients that is compiled over a five year span. The final ranking at the end of the 2014–15 season will be used to determine the number of places for each association in the 2016–17 UEFA Champions League and 2016–17 UEFA Europa League. Currently as of July 30, the clubs that win their domestic leagues in those countries listed play in the first round based on being the bottom six in the CC:

First Round Qualification

49. Faroe Islands - 3.500

50. Wales - 2.875

51. Armenia - 2.750

52. Andorra - 0.833

53. San Marino - 0.499

54. Gibraltar - 0.250

Scotland is currently 23rd in CC with a 15.650. No chance at the moment as they would have to do drop to 3.5 overall, not going to happen at the moment.

Scotland was never really a footballing powerhouse in Europe. Celtic won European Cup and Rangers got to a UEFA Cup Final but nothing really more. Scottish clubs will never really challenge for European glory anymore because of the nature of the current game. Scottish clubs can just push for that elusive group stage berth for the revenue, delight their supporters on three away trips throughout Europe and maybe make the Round of 16 like Celtic did two seasons ago. It's not all Celtic's fault that the SPFL is in the mess that it's in now. Blame Rangers as well for an abysmal front office that caused their club to fold. Because of that, the Old Firm matches disappeared because of Rangers having to start up as a phoenix club and work their way back up the SPFL pyramid. The Old Firm matches is what drove Scottish football, what made people tune-in. Until Rangers are promoted back to the Scottish Premiership, we are stuck with what SPFL has to offer with derbys between the current top clubs of Celtic, Aberdeen, Kilmarnock, and Motherwell. But the SPFL doesn't have the international television rights like the PL, La Liga, Bundesliga or Serie A have. They are struggling with just terrestrial coverage from the four countries of the UK and here in Canada. But I think The Scottish Championship will be even more interesting in due to Rangers, Hibs and Hearts all fighting for that one automatic promotion position available and four other positions going into a promotion play-off (CHAMP 2-4, PL 11). It's going to be fun!

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Do Welsh clubs playing in the English football leagues then fall under the English coefficient, or the Welsh? Because it would seem like a hike to get one of the Welsh teams into the Europa league if they don't.

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Yes English Torin. The Welsh clubs that play in the Welsh Premier League are counted toward the Wales country coefficient only.

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The Welsh clubs in the English pyramid used to qualify for Europe through the Welsh Cup until about 10 years ago.Cardiff got to the ECWC Semis once and Wrexham and ( my team) Newport County made the Quarters.Now they qualify as English as Swansea did last season after their Capital One Cup win.

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Imagine if Celtic don't qualify for the group stages and then the other Scottish teams (Aberdeen, Motherwell and St. Johnstone) fail to qualify for the Europa League - or at least perform poorly. What would that do to Scotland's UEFA coefficient?

Could we see Scottish teams having to enter the Champions League qualifying rounds at the very first stage instead of the second?

No sympathy for the Scottish teams. They're the ones who had Rangers restart from the bottom of the pyramid and cut their own throats in doing so. Bet they wish they could have some of those Old Firm games now.

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It wasn't Celtic who "forced" Rangers to start from the bottom of Scottish League 2. It was a vote by then Scottish FA, Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League. Just because they had a long and storied history, didn't preclude them from the same regulations of a new professional club entering the leagues. All clubs have to start from the lowest professional division (in Scotland it was then SFL Div 3). Yes all three football boards held votes on Rangers coming back directly into the SPL. And both the SFA and SFL voted against it because it is unfair to the other clubs that are existing for a new club to gain an advantage. In actual fact Celtic voted at the time to keep the new Rangers in the SPL because of the Old Firm matches plus argued that the SPL would decline without Rangers.

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Tough draw for Hull today in Europa League play today. Yes they go into the second leg at home 0-0 aggregate but Huddleston should have converted that penalty kick. Watched the match today and thought Hull was the better side. Still a great away result for Hull. Here's hoping they can pull out a home result.

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It wasn't Celtic who "forced" Rangers to start from the bottom of Scottish League 2. It was a vote by then Scottish FA, Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League. Just because they had a long and storied history, didn't preclude them from the same regulations of a new professional club entering the leagues. All clubs have to start from the lowest professional division (in Scotland it was then SFL Div 3). Yes all three football boards held votes on Rangers coming back directly into the SPL. And both the SFA and SFL voted against it because it is unfair to the other clubs that are existing for a new club to gain an advantage. In actual fact Celtic voted at the time to keep the new Rangers in the SPL because of the Old Firm matches plus argued that the SPL would decline without Rangers.

I said Scottish teams. I know who was responsible for saying Rangers start from the bottom. And in this case the regs really needed to go out the window. You're right, new teams should start from the bottom, but Rangers was a new team in name only starting with the same assets (players...) who finished second in the league table despite the Administration penalty. It's probably more unfair to said clubs in retrospect to set all those British pounds on fire. But they did anyway.

Principle just sent all of Scottish soccer into a death spiral. Well played chaps. At least you still have golf.

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Getting bent over that hard by a polish team has proven to me the Celtic would never last in the Premier League if the opportunity finally came. They could've competed in the EPL with the team they had 10-15 years ago, but it'll never happen now.

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Hull might need to look at their spot-kick takers options, Tom Huddlestone looks like he's ready for the England squad.

Sorry Jaffa...

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Heh. There are a couple of others ahead of Huddlestone in the pecking order but they weren't on the pitch at the time, I was surprised Long didn't take it though.

Hopefully we're getting our tickets for the home leg sorted this weekend...

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Also, a bit of quick news. World Cup star Guillermo Ochoa signed for Malaga CF.

I was hoping he'd come to a mid to lower table english side, but I suppose that wouldn't have every happened.

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Officially announced today by Crystal Palace the signing of Norwegian international center back Brede Hangeland to a one year contract. That is a good signing by Palace due to his experience (270 Premier League appearances, 91 caps/4 goals for Norway - currently captain). He can actually take control of the back four and might make Palace a stronger defensive unit (in relation to mid-table clubs). Yes he is 33-years old but mid table clubs like Palace need experienced players, especially central defenders, to shore up the constant leaking from giving up numerous goals showing up as a high negative goal differential.

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Celtic 1-6 Tottenham FT

Only a friendly and a weakened Celtic side put out but once again not a great scoreline for Celtic fans to see. Certainly not the best week for them, they will need a miracle on Wednesday at Murrayfield as discussed earlier in this thread. Given that they will probably romp to the SPL title unchallenged again, the excitement for the season could be over in the first week of August.

Efe Ambrose was also sent off in this match. 2 red cards in 4 days. Yikes.

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As for the bad week for Celtic, I agree with you marble with the excitement of the season will be over next week when they get eliminated from UCL. But the European dream isn't really over for Celtic if they can't turn it around against Legia. They will enter the Europa League Play-Off Round with a chance to continue playing in Europe. Yes the revenue isn't as high as UCL but starting this season, the winners of Europa League will enter at least the play-off round, and will enter the group stage if the berth reserved for the Champions League title holders is not used. This tournament is worth playing for now! As for Ambrose, Ronny Deila needs to make an example of him and bench him for a long time. Not needed, a liability in my mind. And it's only pre-season.

Emirates Cup action from today:

Valencia 2-2 Monaco

Arsenal 5-1 Benfica

The big news of the day was Yaya Sanogo scoring 4 goals (including a first half hat trick) and Joel Campbell scoring the fifth in the romp against the 2014 Europa League runners-up and 2013/14 Portuguese treble winners. I couldn't believe how well his movement was today and his second effort toe poke second goal was beautiful. You can see what a year makes on a player. Maybe Wenger's training magic is finally rubbing off on Sanogo. Yes I know it's only pre-season and against a depleted As Águias but a nice turn around. I still have my doubts with the player. We'll see how he has adapted to Premier League play against Manchester City next Sunday in the FA Community Shield and in the Premier League curtain raiser on August 16th v Crystal Palace. New signings Calum Chambers played the entire 90' in a center back role and Alexis Sanchez came onto the pitch for the final 15' to a standing Emirates stadium ovation. He had some nice touches in his time on the pitch, things are looking up for us.

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Ambrose is a :censored:ing plug. I wanted him gone after turning the ball over on EVERY goal against in our home leg vs Juventus in the UCL a while back. This only makes me loathe his presence even more. This Celtic team is turning into a complete disaster. They need to sell Forster for big $$$ and FAST if they hope to break even this year. Attendance is :censored:e, the quality of the league is :censored:e, and no UCL money is gonna kill us unless we pull off a miracle or manage to make an unlikely run through Europa League.

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the quality of the league is :censored:

You guys' fault. Maybe if you hadn't driven the other two clubs that entertained competing with you into administration, we wouldn't be here.

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The quality of the league was already :censored:, long before the administration of Rangers and Hearts. Keep in mind, we went down that same road 20 years ago, but we had someone come in and bail us out at the last minute.

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West Ham United made it official yesterday with the season long loan of Arsenal's right back Carl Jenkinson. He is now going to meet up The Hammers in Gelsinkirchen, Germany for the Schaller 04 Tournament.

It's good for Jenkinson in getting a season long loan so that he will get regular first team football as with Debuchy and Chambers already cemented their RB spots. But I still think he should have taken the transfer to Hull City. I still think he has no chance of playing for Arsenal regularly. It would have benefited both Hull (strengthen their defense) and Jenkinson (develop as a better defender under Bruce).

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