‘Bobby Madden did not have a good game yesterday,’ David Potter

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Well, if this wasn’t an old-fashioned Cup tie, I don’t know what is. A hard game on a pitch that was by no means unplayable but certainly wasn’t ideal with two teams battling out with a considerable amount of beef and brawn rather than skill and finesse.

Players with mud all over their strips (I was glad that Greg Taylor and Ryan Christie had a change at half-time) and 100% effort from everyone with Celtic just having enough professionalism to get over the line near the end, after they had missed enough chances to kill the game in the early part of the second half.

Many of us would have settled for a draw so that on a better pitch on a better night, Celtic might have been able to turn it on, but then again, football (Scottish football in particular) has to be played in all conditions, and as I never tire of saying, Scottish football is no place for softies!

Bobby Madden did not have a good game yesterday, and on this occasion, I have to side with those who think he favours Celtic’s opponents. Several free kicks were clearly given the wrong way, one or two reasonable hand balls were not given and throw-ins in particular tended to be got wrong. The foul which led to the the goal looked to me like a straight red card, for it was reckless and could have injured (indeed it did injure) an opponent. Justice was however done when Celtic scored.

And how nice it was the see the smile on the face of Ryan Christie!

It was hard to pick out any stars, but I was once again impressed by Callum McGregor. You know he is playing well because the Press have already started to tell him that he will be happier with Brendan down at Leicester. Don’t listen to them. Callum!

The central defenders, Kristoffer Ajer in particular, put in a shift, (Nir Bitton was also very good) but this was no pitch for Odsonne Edouard who once again disappointed.

Greg Taylor, I felt had one of his poorer games for the club, but there was more “go” about James Forrest yesterday, while Scott Brown once again looked less than 100% fit.

St Johnstone will be disappointed that the game did not finish ten minutes earlier. They could have done with the big gate. But they have nothing to reproach themselves for.

So Celtic have bounced back from Thursday night. It has been a good weekend, and we now face Aberdeen in the semi-final.

That is not however our main immediate concern. That is the return to Livingston, the ground where, last October, a rare Ryan Christie moment of madness cost us three points. They are a good side, and we will have to be at our best to beat them.

David Potter

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Match Photos courtesy of Geo…

1st March 2020; McDairmid Park, Perth, Perth and Kinross, Scotland; Scottish Premiership Football, St Johnstone versus Celtic; Scott Brown of Celtic inspects the pitch before the match
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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who 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 editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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