SCOTT BROWN reckoned it was a game of Frustration yesterday as Celtic surrendered their 100% win record in domestic football this season with the goalless draw against Derek McInnes’ parked bus.
McInnes got a chance to have a look at Oli Burke and as the Aberdeen boss – a former West Brom player – is in the running for the Hawthorns job that became available at the weekend – he may end up having a say in where Burke plays his football next term.
“It was a wee bit frustrating more than anything. We made it into a bit of a battle and didn’t play our usual style,” the Celtic captain admitted to the official site.
The tactical changes that worked so well the previous week seemed less effective this week and the two changes from the side that won well at Hibs seemed to damage Celtic more than they threatened the visitors.
Lustig and Edouard were relegated to the bench with Toljan and Henderson brought in. Henderson and Sinclair were then hauled off at the break with Edouard and Johnston coming on.
Timo Weah had to wait until the closing stages to get on. Why?
“At the end of the day, though, it was a point and we’re sitting eight points clear at the top of the table,” a defiant Broony said.
“We’ve had a fantastic run in 2019 and this just continues the run.
“It’s just about how we performed today. It wasn’t up to scratch. We didn’t create as many chances as we usually do and we didn’t get on the front foot from the start.
“The gaffer’s been brilliant since he’s come in, he’s spoken very well. He’s been very positive and he’ll continue to do that.
“He wants us to play the same style that we’ve been playing. He wants us to be direct and create chances and I think today it was a little bit sloppy from everybody, but as the manager says, it’s been a rollercoaster couple of weeks but hopefully that’s us now over that we’ll go again against Dundee.”
The Celtic squad, particularly in midfield, has suffered from the number ion playing missing through injury but Neil Lennon is confined that he’ll have the likes of Callum McGregor, Ryan Christie, Tom Rogic, Olivier Ntcham and Filip Benkovic all back to full fitness and ready to start over the next few games.
Broony reckons that these players will provide a huge boost for the run-in.
“The international break is coming up as well and that gives the whole squad time to recover, especially the injured players,” Broony said.
“Some of them have been fantastic for us over the past couple of seasons, so it will be good to get them back.
“Nir Bitton has come back it and he’s been fantastic. It’s been difficult for him, being out for 10 or 11 months, and he’s played a few games in a row so I’m sure he’ll be feeling it over the next couple of days.
“Ewan Henderson has been great when he’s played as well. There was a wee change of tactics at half-time. That wasn’t due to anyone’s performance, it was to try and get a different style into the game.”
Here are the ‘highlights’ from Celtic v Aberdeen.