More disappointment for Celtic, I’m afraid to say. This time there was slightly more commitment and the defence was marginally better than it had been of late, (although they should never have lost that late goal) but frankly, it still will not do. Celtic are playing as if they know that they are going to do badly. Crucial chances were missed in the first half, and you could almost sense the spirit going out of the team.
Neil Lennon is probably right when he says that it is all in the mind, but frankly, that does not get us very far. We are going nowhere. December is, of course, far too early to write a season off, but it is difficult to do anything else. Theoretically, we can still catch theRangers but it is hard to see how. Not only are we playing in a way that is NOT going to win games, but theRangers are playing in a way that will. Ross County who won all the plaudits (not without cause) for their rugged display last week were toothless this week and collapsed dismally in the second half.
The two phenomena are linked. It is precisely BECAUSE theRangers are playing well that we go on to the field expecting to flop, and it is BECAUSE theRangers know that we are unreliable, even at home against St Johnstone, that they gain extra confidence. Anyone who denies this does not really know the way that the dynamics of Glasgow football work.
This is why we must really start again. I hate myself for joining the “Manager must go” brigade, but we are going nowhere at the moment, and Celtic need to be going somewhere. At a time, more than ever, when the supporters need a boost and something to cheer about, they are not getting it. For this, the Celtic management and players must stand condemned.
Celtic did not enjoy the best of luck today, but you should never allow yourself to need “luck”. There were about four chances that should have been put away, and the finger needs to be pointed at Odsonne Edouard. The boy is so clearly unhappy, and the annoying thing is that we have seen enough of him to know that the ability is there. He has to produce it oftener.
The good points were Callum McGregor, Ryan Christie (although he is sometimes a little too aggressive) and the substitutes who came on. They deserved more, but other than that, there is little to be happy about. Christopher Jullien possibly added something to the defence but showed an astonishing lack of game management skills in the very last minute when he allowed the referee to give a free kick against him in the opposition’s box. Jeremie Frimpong is so frustrating. The ability is there, but the conviction isn’t. Sooner or later, he will run into trouble or deliver a ball…to nobody!
The referee? Don’t think I have seen Mr Monroe before. Not a bad performance, and I don’t think we can blame him for it all, . I wasn’t 100% in agreement with Alan Stubbs wanting a red card for that foul, but some referees would have given one. Mr Monroe’s big fault was not allowing extra minutes for the fairly blatant time wasting by St Johnstone near the end. Maybe it wouldn’t have mattered anyway.
So here we are. Not yet at Christmas and we need a miracle to get back into the League race. Out of Europe, out of the League Cup and only really the Scottish Cup to play for. Mind you, this season there are two of them!
I repeat, a fresh start is sadly required. We are going nowhere, and we haven’t said that very often these past 20 years or so! And I have always been a great fan of Neil as well!