Now is not the time for harsh or hasty judgements on Celtic’s Ibrox stand-ins

Several Celtic players came under fire after Saturdays abysmal display at Ibrox, none more so than Alexandro Bernabei and Yuki Kobayashi. Even Hyeon-gyu Oh to an extent.

The trio are ultimately squad players at the moment as currently all play second fiddle in their respective positions. In Bernabei’s case he’s a back up to Greg Taylor while Kobayashi has the unenviable task of trying to dislodge either one of Carl Starfelt and Cameron Carter Vickers. Oh has arguably the most difficult task as he’s vying with Kyogo for a starting place, a competition that Giorgos Giakoumakis realised he was never going to win so off he popped to the MLS in January.

Saturday was a chance for all three to stake a claim and give Ange Postecoglou some food for fought, but all of them put in disappointing shifts. They weren’t alone, but other players don’t have question marks hanging over their abilities to cut it in the side.

Bernabei looks a decent player, although his defensive qualities need worked on, his strength is undeniably in attack, but in this side he has to have defensive capabilities and that’s why Greg Taylor is ahead of him in the pecking order.

Kobayashi arrived in January and has only played a handful of games and looked solid in his first few appearances. Question marks have now been asked over his last two outings at Tynecastle and of course Ibrox. His strength being the main weakness, he’ll need to work on that to have any chance of making it in this league.

Oh was anonymous at Ibrox, although he nearly grabbed a fine goal with only the post denying him, but apparently he only had 17 touches in the Match, that for a Celtic striker is unacceptable. He does look like he has the makings of a great player, his has good body strength and has nicked valuable goals like the one against Hibs at Celtic park and of course the one against Hearts last week. In my mind he has a terrific chance of making the grade at Celtic.

Hyeon-Gyu Oh celebrates after scoring during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Hearts and Celtic FC at Tynecastle Park on May 07, 2023  (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

It is of course unfair to judge them as they’ve all arrived from different countries and are adapting not only to a new kind of football, but a new lifestyle. That takes a lot for some folk to get used to, so it would be unwise to write them off so quickly. Think Stiliyan Petrov for example.

The time to judge them will be next season when they’ve had a full pre-season and some more experience of our game under their belt. Hopefully they get more playing time before the season comes to an end as it will only benefit them greatly. Now is not the time to make harsh or hasty judgements.

JustAnOrdinaryBhoy – follow on Twitter @ordinarybhoy

About Author

An ordinary everyday Celtic supporters hailing and still residing in Govan in the shadows of the enemy. I’m a season ticket holder. I Witnessed my first Celtic game in 1988 and have attended when I can ever since. Growing up in the 90s I witnessed Celtic at their lowest, and now appreciate the historic success we enjoy today. I enjoy writing about this wonderful football club and hopefully will continue to do so. I’ve always been a keen writer and initially started this a hobby. My ambition is to one day become as good an author as my fellow Celtic Star colleagues.


  1. I totally agree with the premise of your article. I remember that it took big John Harrison around a dozen games or so, to notch his first goal for the Celts. From that moment, he never looked back.

    Hail Hail.