Sandman’s Definitive Ratings – Celtic v Dundeer Mifflin

SANDMAN’S DEFINITIVE RATINGS: CELTIC v DUNDEER MIFFLIN…

“Champions keep playing until they get it right.”

– Billie Jean king. A good gi…bl…le…erm…

ROXIE – 6.5/10 – Surely he’d get a night off saving the jerseys? Nope, opening minutes were all about the monolithic presence thwarting their forays into our box as the Celtic players struggled to work out the significance of the referee blowing his whistle after they had all lined-up for kick-off…Mercifully for Joe the rest of the half turned into a basic arithmetic test as he tried not to lose count of the times the net bulged at the other end. Unfortunately he is a goalkeeper, and therefore it’s understandable why he was ragin’ after their consolation went in – because he thought it was an equaliser.

GREGGS THE BAKER – 7.5/10 – Sunday’s flighted delight was repeated to set up Matty, and Greggs went one better by tucking away a goal of his own with the nonchalance he usually exhibits putting a try of sausage rolls in the oven. Then he actually smiled. Or was it wind?

WAYNE GRETZKY – 7.5/10 – Aggressive and brusque approach signals the iceman is approaching something like last season’s consistency. Seems to segue well with tricky Ying, and unsettled their decent EPL – level fullback by charging past him at will to fire in useful – and goalscoring – deliveries.

OF JUSTICE – 5.5/10 – A reprieve through injury? Rocky goes down but his sparring partner stays on his feet and weighs in for another bout. Yet still looks on the ropes with careless passing and ineffectual physical confrontations; powder-puffed off the ball for their stormtrooper’s disallowed goal. Must level-up his attributes back to autumn’s comprehensive defensive displays or remain our current weak link.

Cameron Carter-Vickers scores the opening goal during the Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Dundee FC at Celtic Park Stadium on February 28, 2024. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

GET CARTER – 6.5/10 – Back and you flaming know it. And so do they. Stiffed a few suspiciously enthusiastic Zombies in dark blue like they were watching a Jenna Jameson 90s classic, then added to the midfield domination by stepping in with angry-grizzly intent and scattering resistance. Crowned a decent return with the classic climb-and-clank-it-in opener.

TONIO IWATAO – 8/10 – Sunday’s least popular substitution becomes Wednesday’s most nodded-at inclusion. Positional awareness anchored the midfield, showing exactly how it’s done early-on when snuffing out alarming danger on the edge of our box. Brought a sense of dark menace and controlled violence to a midfield that’s been too lightweight at times recently; like a Japanese Peaky Blinder.

Callum McGregor scores against Dundee. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

CALMAC – 6.5/10 – With great power comes great responsibility. So with three points mandatory the skipper set to it in the advanced role many believe he’s most effective in…Well, me and Peter Grant. Sweet surprise of the night for the architect as he skelped in the sixth with his last touch and got an early massage with a happy ending from some ‘good girl’ as the second 45 went through the motions…

THE BUILDER – 8/10 – He’ll shake his head, then shake them up with it. Nobody’s his biggest critic other than the mirror and even extreme handsomeness can find irritating self-dissatisfaction; not that there’s any Zombies ever been in such a position. The uglies. But when the silken limbs synched, finally, it was Matty of early season -scoring, silky and match-winning.

Yang gave Owen Beck a torrid time. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

YING – 8.5/10 – Yang-a-lang! I thought this bhoy had something there despite previous damp squibs; fire crackered his way down that wing tonight and proved his worth in often scintillating fashion with the direct and chaotic wing-play you love to see rattle the opposition. We’ve witnessed sand-dancers a-plenty and there is often an air of self-doubt around them, but with the Yangster it manifests more like an irrepressible desire to do the next thing brighter and better; confidence within that separates the very good from the intermittently good. Certainly hit some high notes tonight and deserves extra kudos and MOTM for doing so against no mug – their rated Liverpool loanee who nullified Daizen at Xmas.

Adam Idah is delighted after scoring at Celtic Park for the first time. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

DUNCAN IDAHO – 7.5/10 – Saving himself for the weekend (when I get to see Dune Part 2)? No, he’s deid in that, I forgot. But well alive for the moment wearing the Hoops; in that he’s found a temporary home where he’s being
welcomed like a long-lost billionaire brother with a terminal condition. And like an echo of happier times, He Don’t Stop. Season-saving intervention on Sunday, continuation of an uptrend tonight with a clever headed killer goal. Then he threw a scoundrel to the ground in a fit of rebel indignation. More!

Daizen Maeda celebrates with Matt O’Riley. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

LORD KATSUMOTO – 7/10 – HA! If anyone else had executed that turn and finish, they’d be gushing over it like the Justin Beiber fanclub at a meet & greet. So Daizen gets the goal of the game after a tremendous build-up and seemed moderately happy, while the watching stadium peers through at the acid rain and wonders about it’s LSD
content…

SUBS –

KILLER MUSHROOM – N/A – On he comes, off goes the creativity switch, around he roams until denied a big goal by a big stop from a big Zombie haddie. Not too bothered – while Idaho scores, the wee mhan can work on getting his mojo back for the run-in. There’s a couple of games against his favourite cannon-fodder coming up right on
cue…

NED KELLY – 7/10 – The bhoy’s a savage! The outlaw nation roars a guided screamer into the top corner with the leg he normally uses for kicking getaway horses. A dream-come-true moment, hit from a distance of a yard for every year of his short life; exactly the way he imagined it in the nursery-school playground game. Yesterday.

TONY THE TIGER – N/A – Left? Again? I remember left. It’s no’ right. Right?

BRIAN DE – N/A – Cameo crossbar caresses don’t come much sweeter than that near-worldy effort. Unlucky.

RAQUEL – N/A – Just enough time on the park to become the new glamour pin-up ghirl of the Dundee Discovery Expeditionary Force as the away contingent swooned. Like seeing electric lights hadn’t blown their minds enough.

Brendan Rodgers watches as his team hammers Dundee 7-1. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

THE SHNAKE – 8/10 –

“Good bhoy. Good bhoy. Good bhoy. Good bhoy.
Good bhoy. Good bhoy. Good bhoy. Damn; Bad Bhoys.”

After days of dragging suffragettes out of the way of his Range Rover and having professional hand-wringers call for burning at the stake just because he misgendered some BBC hack (Although you’d think they’d have been happy, in a confusing way…), finally the boss gets back to basics; The basics of getting a tune out of his season-long toil and trouble – and that’s a phrase witches are familiar with, just for you interloping BBC she/he/it/theys…

Tonight, for the important part of the game, he nailed it like the media fantasising about him and a wooden cross, and we finally got some scintillating product out on the park. No scathing critique in order after that razzle-dazzle. Now rinse and repeat for Sunday.

Good bloke…

MIBBERY – 0/10 – Stunned. Simply stupefied. Left as impotent as Allan Mac in a roomful of consenting women. The VAR monitor was on Ebay by half-time.

OVERALL – 8.5/10 – Screw that, bored out of my box by half-time. And failed to win the second. Sack the bored (sic). A performance of throwback magnificence that cast us into glorious reminiscence of past glories. Magnificent seven demolition precisely when required, ramping up the goal difference and ramping up the
belief in a squad badly needing a booster shot that isn’t rife with Bill Gates jizz.

Classic Heiders & Volleys won the match by the interval: 3 nods in a row had us 9 schoolyard points in the lead and a single volley in the second 45 would have scooped all Dundee’s lunch money. I commented on Sunday being pivotal, mentally (or maybe I didn’t, nit-pickers – read back yourselves, I can’t be bothered with that; do yer own homework…) and this evening’s slaughter may have vindicated that notion.

The Bhoys got into title-winning rhythm with tempo and penetration that eviscerated their opponents who’d arrived on the back of an impressive campaign to date. This game contained too many echoes of the previous couple of seasons’ glories to ignore. And the hope rises that we’re going to get a symphonic reprise of those dynamite rallies in the closing months to come.

Or at least a few quality cover versions to drown out the horrendous flutes, pan pipes, tin drums and xylophone cacophony brewing up from The Travelling Williams (apologies, Roy Orbison et al…) on the other side of the city.

On we tour, next date Sunday, live from Diet Cousins Arena.

Go Away Now

Sandman

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who 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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