Well, this week was always going to be about next week anyway, if you get my meaning, but today we saw a lot of what we’ve been missing for large parts of the season. Apart from anything else, there was a hunger, an appetite and a desire. We simply must have these things next week, but I am confident that if we play anything like as well as we played today, we will win.
We must hope and pray that James Forrest is not injured again. His dash and determination were obvious today even to the extent of scoring with a miskick, but it was his willingness to run at the defence that made all the difference. There were a lot of people glad to see Ryan Christie not starting today. I get that, but we must now hope that Ryan has learned his lesson. The last two games he has scored two good goals by keeping the ball low. He is far too good a player to keep on the bench, or to unload in the summer.
Elyounoussi is a player that not everyone has warmed to. He has had some disappointments, it has to be said, but today he was superb with two great goals and an assist. I often feel that he has perhaps let himself down by trying too hard to feed Edouard, whereas today he tried harder to show what he is capable of himself. Let’s have more of that next week!
The commentators were right (nice to see Jackie McNamara in good health, by the way!) when they said that there was not really a weakness today. Stephen Welsh was superb and he has been an unboasted-about, almost a hidden success story this season. But a stern test awaits him, as it does everyone, next week. Laxalt or Taylor at left back? Your call, Mr Kennedy, but either would be acceptable. Possibly Taylor has fewer bad games, and if my arm were twisted I would go for him.
What really gave me encouragement was the desire to play, and the desire to play together. These things count for a lot. We must all love Celtic, if we want to play for them! As I say, the attitude is re-assuring, but of course it will all count for nothing if we do not perform next Saturday. “We’ll forgive everything, Cellic, everything, if ye’s just win next week!”
Make us proud of you, Celtic!