No silver lining tonight, Celtic had it won then blew it yet again

Well that was a frustrating night. To quote the outrageous Ron Burgandy from Anchorman: ‘I’m in a glass box of emotion!’. Why do we not learn anything from these game? Is it that utterly complex for the players to get their heads around? If you stand off good opposition at this level they will punish you. Plain and simple. No analysis needed on this one.

The same old flaws over and over and over and over again. Annoying, isn’t it? That monotonous droning sound pulsating continually in the recesses of your mind.

I’m not giving any of our players credit for that collapse tonight. There is no silver lining tonight folks I’m afraid to say. We had it – just as we had done in Betis – then folded like a cheap deck chair.

Robert Andrich of Bayer 04 Leverkusen scores their side’s first goal during the UEFA Europa League group G match between Bayer Leverkusen and Celtic FC at BayArena on November 25, 2021 . (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images)

New team or not, it’s ridiculous the amount of goals we would need to score at this level to win against quality opposition. Before the game I questioned if our defence could take the domestic form into Europe – they failed spectacularly. God awful at the aggressive side of the game tonight when defending our penalty area. Joe Hart must be bealing in that dressing room and I wouldn’t blame the guy one bit. His defenders were so, so poor in front of him tonight.

The rot set in when Bitton had to go off tonight as he made several key interceptions in that space between the defence and midfield which kept Leverkusen at bay. A tip of the hat to those in the support that believe he is a bad player. Aye guys, I’ll crack the jokes thank you very much.

McCarthy was scrambling around not doing anything much when he replaced the Israeli, and all those years of experience never showed at all. I don’t see what use James is if he can’t give us that knowledgeable head in times of stormy seas.

Ajeti was also lacklustre in attack, and why on earth can strikers not hold the ball in any more? That’s all that was required. Big John Hartson on commentary must have been perplexed at Albian when he came on.

 Jota of Celtic celebrates with teammate David Turnbull after scoring their side’s second goal during the UEFA Europa League group G match between Bayer Leverkusen and Celtic FC at BayArena on November 25, 2021 (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images)

As for Mikey Johnston he does as he has done so often in a Celtic shirt and flattered to deceive. The winger never truly tested Frimpong on that flank and as we all know it’s defensively where Jeremie’s deficiencies lie. Once again our lack of ruthlessness is what is killing us, combined with shameless reproductions of defensive lapses.

The squad depth has never been more glaringly obvious. When we have a couple of players or more missing, or go off the field of play, we don’t have adequate replacements for them. This was none more so apparent in the exchange of Ajeti for Kyogo and the switching of Bitton and McCarthy.

 Jota of Celtic celebrates after scoring their side’s second goal during the UEFA Europa League group G match between Bayer Leverkusen and Celtic FC at BayArena on November 25, 2021 (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images)

I cannot wait for the January transfer window to arrive as we need to help the players that seem to continually deliver for us, whilst there are those who just aren’t hitting the mark at present in this Celtic squad. You need a strong, competitive squad to win anything in football. If we are to progress, we need to address these key issues head on with no skimping on the money to fix our insufficient quality and depth within the squad.

Ange deserves it, he has performed a minor miracle getting us to the Europa League this season. The man must be given the funds and backing he has earned to push this rebuild onto its next phase. God that transfer window can’t open quick enough!

Paul Gillespie

About Author

I'm a Garngad Bhoy through and through. My first ever Celtic game was a friendly against Italian side Parma at Celtic Park, in 2002. Currently a student of English Literature and Education at the University of Strathclyde for my sins. Favourite game would be a toss up between beating Manchester United with that Naka freekick, or the game against the Oldco when Hesselink scored in the dying seconds. I'm still convinced Cal Mac is wasted playing that far back.


  1. What game were you watching mate, celtic can go forward head held high i watched that defence look solid upto the last 10 15 minutes where we ran out of steam and invited them onto us but other than Biton doing well and Mcarthy doing nothing yet i dont agree with a word you said

    • Don’t know what he was watching either. Maybe seeing the buns win has put him in a vile mood. It was a weird comment all round.🤷🏻‍♂️

  2. Scunnered Campbell on

    If Ange made those subs to show the Board how poor the squad is, then I understand it .. otherwise it made no sense at all. Absolutely no need to change 4 players. Bitton off with Soro on, would’ve maybe worked. Who gave McCarthy a 4 year deal? Scandalous. Jota was quiet, but he scored a great goal & would’ve scored the chance Johnston messed up. He’s another that needs rid .. along with Ajeti.
    Roll on January & Maeda & a LB

  3. No we did not have it won. I’m assuming you think the game finishes as soon as a team goes in front. We don’t have,at the moment,players who have the ability to keep out teams like Leverkusen no matter how many play in defence. Some will still be saying the defence was hopeless let’s play more defensively. Crazy. The worst mistake they made tonight was to play well enough to give fools false expectations.

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