Hayes heads Celtic top as Clement loses the plot in Raintown

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Well that was a wonderful Wednesday night for Celtic was it not? We were keeping an eye on three games, including the much postponed Scottish Premiership match at Dens Park where the visitors had already counted their chickens in regard to the three points.

Last week on The Celtic Star we spoke about the importance of beating St Mirren then sitting back to see how theRangers could cope with two tough away games at Dingwall and Dundee. Celtic duly got the job done with an impressive 3-0 victory against St Mirren, who we now know will be back at Celtic for a third time on the final day of the Scottish Premiership campaign.

That win put Celtic four points clear but theRangers had the two games in hand. They reckoned that by last night they would be top of the table having taken care of the two ‘diddy’ sides to take six points and open up a two points lead at the top of the table.

Well things certainly didn’t go to plan and after that 3-2 defeat against Ross County they could only muster a share of the points in a dreadful performance by Philippe Clement’s side. And things got even worse after the goalless draw with Clement’s post match interviews.

It was bad enough (for theRangers fans) on Sky Sports but even worse in the media room where we talked about Dundee going man for man and the Dundee players would even follow his players into the toilet! Clement’s claims that his side should have beaten Motherwell 6-1 in a game they lost, his moral winners nonsense against Celtic and a barrage of insults and digs aimed at Dundee all lacked dignity, savvy and common sense for a manager leading a group of players in a tense, title battle that he appears to have blown.

Brendan Rodgers won’t be counting any chickens himself but you can be sure that Clement’s meltdown over the past week will privately have delighted the Celtic manager who in comparison is a class act compared to Clement.

Celtic v St Mirren – Brendan Rodgers with Adam Idah after the Premiership match at Celtic Park on Saturday April 13, 2024. Photo Jane Barlow

Like many of you I couldn’t resist a sneaky look on their biggest forum last night and amid the angry, rage and disappointment there’s real concern about their manager. One post caught my eye though. It was from a guy who had some knowledge of Clement’s time at Monaco where we claimed that the Belgian waffler started brilliantly, played the same system but it all fell apart very quickly and he was sacked.

Those two results are bad enough but the Bears are now focusing on Clement himself and it might not end well for him if he’s seen as a manager who has cracked under pressure, just like his team. Hearts will certainly fancy their chances on Sunday.

Shout out to the Dundee supporters and whoever played Raintown just after the final whistle!

Elena Sadiku and Tash Flint during the SWPL match between Celtic FC Women and Hibs last night

In the two other games last night Elena Saduku’s Celtic side didn’t play as well as they have in recent weeks but nevertheless got the job done with a Caitlin Hayes header from a corner midway through the first half. So 1-0 to Celtic FC Women who had narrowed the gap on theRangers Women from four points to just one ahead of last night’s round of matches in the SWPL1.

The Caitlin Hayes header that put Celtic FC Women top of the league looking down on theRangers

Hearts, who are the visitors to Celtic Park this Sunday, were last night entertaining theRangers Women and it was the Jambos who took the three points, also with a 1-0 win. Those two results mean that Elena Sadiku who replaced Fran Alonso in January and last her first two matches, has now taken Celtic FC Women to the top of the table, two points clear with six games to go.

Two of these are at Celtic Park, against Hearts this Sunday and then on the final day of the season on 19 May when we could be celebrating a first ever SWPL1 title for Celtic Football Club.

An injury scare for Amy Gallacher was the only negative for Celtic on the night.

Unlike Clement, Sadiku has been calm, clever, tactically astute and has changed the style of football the team players turning it into a winning machine. It’s all very impressive and the Celtic FC Women side really needs the Celtic support to turn out in numbers this Sunday as we look for the three points against a decent Hearts side.

Incidentally you can enjoy our photo gallery on the next page from the Celtic FC Women game against Hibs last night, where there was an injury scare for Amy Gallagher. Hope that she’s okay for Sunday!


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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds 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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