SANDMAN’S DEFINITIVE RATINGS: CELTIC v OVIS ARIES
“Party attendance is mandatory. We do not punish our stormtroopers for party attendance. Names were taken for Wehrmacht accreditation, not condemnation. There will be many parties in the near future, culminating in the Party party on July 12th. Join our party. We are the (party) Peepil.” Obersturmbannführersturgeon
BANE – 7/10 – Save, supervillain! Kept the heads from going down early with a splendid reaction stop then turned into Franco Baresi with the teasing guile of Ronaldinho; a cameo which immediately made him our second-best central midfielder.
DREXL – 6.5/10 – Different hairstyles, same delivery; the Celtic left-back saga continues as optimism is quashed at the final ball. Yet, some exhilarating Thelma & Louise link-up play between the ghetto gangsta and our French air-rifle exponent hitman had the Dons reeling. Remained quite involved in the good and bad as he exhibited the range of qualities that made AC Milan want him, and then not…
AJER – 8/10 MOTM – Loves a berserker romp through the opposition middle. Still has to add some finesse to the last decision instead of blunder-bussing the ball beyond his team-mates. But as the predictable deterioration of the whole team manifested, his defensive mindset dominated and he stood tall and solid as a rock, roaring, ‘None shall pass!’ like a flaming Viking boss. In Norwegian.
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) February 27, 2021
RAQUEL – 6.5/10 – Comfortably upholstered into central defence now. (see what I did there, fans of corny sexist euphemisms?) Had a game categorised as ‘quietly effective’, which, for a kid in this turmoil, is the precise remit.
JONJO O’NEILL- 7/10 – Wouldn’t you just know the full-back who possesses the best final ball at the club, isn’t ours…More admirable consistency of product from the finest jockey to wear the Hoops. Will he stay? Will he take payment in cat’s teeth amulets?
BROON – 7/10 – Clattering around the midfield like a majestic Shire horse with its eyes on pasture. Never fleet of foot, but always the determined heart of Celtic. Outstanding last-ditch captain’s block midway through second period as we were stretched to breaking; major factor in the win.
CALMAC – 6.5 – I’ve worked it out – Corpus’ constant drifting inhibits Calmac’s dictation. So he buzzed around and about play, gilding often with his qualities, but…Should have killed the game late-on with a moment entirely designed for him, as he found space on the edge of the box on his favoured left side and slapped the shot wide instead of guiding it in; Calmac’s entire season in a two-second meme.
CORPUS CHRISTIE – 7/10 – Surprisingly retained his place despite being involved in the police investigation as to what forced Tiger Woods off the road, after footage of his Dingwall sand wedge circulated L.A. media, cut with Tiger’s wrecked SUV, and captioned, ‘Where Did The Soccer SuperScoop Really Land?’
Unfazed – as it might get him a move to the L.A Galaxy – Corpus added to his highlight reel, springing forward to set up Eddy’s first. Still prefers the Hollywod pass – more evidence for Tiger – to the straightforward option, and had room enough to try a few today. Effective in opening play up, just not finding the killer quality to end the contest sooner.
EDDIE TURNBULL – 6/10 – Still prone to fade like a butterfly when we need a stinging bar steward. Has potent feet but we either don’t find him often enough or he’s not found the rhythm of the diamond formation to best maintain his effectiveness over a full game. Again, this could all be solved – possibly – with my bugbear of the season – our levels of conditioning. How you get a nonagenarian up to 90 minutes of top level endeavour is a tough one; 80, perhaps…
KLIMALA KLIMAX – 6/10 – A welcome run. Bust a nut – of course… – as he energized the frontline. Impressive movement and linkage – missed a great snatched chance before later hooked mid second-half. Testament to his contribution – look at the space Eddy found to play in. With Paddy off, Eddy gets swarmed. Try him there again, JFK, let’s see how a sustained run in the side works out.
FRENCH EDDY – 7.5/10 – Dazzling nuisance first-half as he roamed around and knotted-up the Sheep defence. Scored a ripper that will irritate the hell out of Deek McDimmis, as those type of winners are traditionally Zombie fodder. Despite covid and burdened with solo quests that would have demotivated a Hobbit, French Eddy remains top scorer in the Scottish Premiership with 21 goals, beyond anyone from the rampant theRangers.
When the post-mortem’s done on 20/21, and the data reviewed, the basic stats will show how we wasted a final season of a superstar. Simply building a side around him with a strike partner became a baffling exercise in caution and asking him to find a way to fit in. He might frustrate at times but it is Celtic who have more frustrated him. Don’t tell that to wee Soro, by the way – just enjoy the lols at him giving Eddy pelters for not teeing up a late tap-in…
ELSHAGYONLASSIE – N/A – Credit for smiling his way into another manager’s team. But he’s surely the last sub to throw on when we’re talking of a rebuild?
MAN OF – N/A – Can he play in tandem with Broon? Course he can, but try it from the start. Provided the humour of the day by slaughtering Eddy for greed after his late wasted slalom.
J.F.K – So John Flaming Kennedy gets the reins and Lennony leaves exactly as he arrived all those years ago – with a growl and the fans wondering what the hell he’s all about. Personally, I’d have 100% put Connie McLaughlin in charge until June, because, y’know, ‘wid’… But here we are and the dugout gets replaced by a grassy knoll and the support starts wondering what a ‘coo de tart’ means, if not livestock that belongs to a prostitute.
Rarely has an interim manager taken over with the odds so loaded against him, with half the fanbase wanting Nixon put in charge and the rest fighting up the stairwells of the nearest school book depository. But JFK has a remit – a wiggly bullet to avoid and eight games to win; two of them must be 10-0 home and away victories against the Unconscionables to despoil their first title win.
Do that, and no arguments here. Win number one went down in the customary manner – spells of swashbuckling finesse almost overshadowed by faltering disarray, as the Zapruder film will show. He’s got seven more games to show his true imprint, to reveal whether his brain is his own or been stolen. Or whether he was just the mindless drone charged with organising a ramshackle defence all along…
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) February 27, 2021
OVERALL – 7/10 – Sometimes, nostalgia gets overwhelming. We’re prone to dominate without the ruthless, merciless finishing of recent times. The spark flares often but there’s no gas in the tank to maintain a flame to scorch the opposition.
You’re thinking, if only…thinking how Celtic ’17 would have tied this TEN up by Easter and we’d be looking towards a Euro horizon with the domestic vengeance of a generation sealed. Instead, another stuttering win from a spell of coruscating combinations just incites a rueful glance at a league table best ignored.
The more we produce contrasting results and displays like today and last Sunday, the more I hark back to the basic negligence in conditioning that facilitates such Jekyll and Hyde performances. On we go, and the requirement for a miracle becomes more the necessity for a comet to strike the earth; not a big one, and somewhere around the Govan area….
CASEY – 10/10 – This rambling madness is dedicated to Casey, a pal, a character, and diehard Celt who tragically lost his life to Covid last week. A veteran of Stuttgart ’03 and most recently the vibrant shenanigans of Lisbon 2017 50th anniversary celebrations. Leaves behind a young family, and the troops in abject shock.
The ever-full goblet will stand empty now, the pub match atmosphere will forever miss a beat of cursing jollity,
and theRangers will suffer 20% less abuse in one swipe of the reaper’s scythe. The cruelty of the universe knows no bounds these days, it seems.
So long and RIP little buddy. We had a ball. Hail, Hail.
Go Away Now.