Words can’t describe, but David Potter tries his best

No-one would ever describe this as the toughest game that Celtic have had this season, but we managed it with a degree of ease, and played some really good football into the bargain as we coasted to within sight of the finishing post in the League race. Assuming that Aberdeen win all their games, nine points will now be enough, and ten to be absolutely sure.

Some of the football played by Stuart Armstrong in particular in the first half was superb. Granted the finishing was not what it could have been. Some of the shooting was rather wayward, but the fact that we were making chance after chance was very satisfying. Every effort must now be made to tie Armstrong to Celtic for the rest of his career, for today showed just how good he can be.

By half time, although we had had one scare early on, we had more or less secured the points, helped by Ross County giving away a penalty and having a man sent off for what was really a rather brutal attack on Scott Brown. It was also singularly pointless and can only really be explained away as a bad doze of the “red mist”, whatever that may mean.

The second half saw a good trademark goal from Stuart Armstrong (how often did we see these kind of goals last season?) and then another from Tom Rogic, a man who had not had the happiest of first halves, but who knows how to take a goal.The game then meandered to a peaceful, almost sleepy end with the crowd departing a cold Celtic Park in droves long before the final whistle.

Defensively, I liked the look of Jack Hendry at centre half, and it was nice to see Mikael Lustig back, but I once again question the deployment of Callum McGregor at left back. He is a fine player but a better midfielder than left back. There were several times in the second half when the Ross County wide man got the better of him. Kristoffer Ayer was first class, and Scott Bain had at least two good saves, particularly that one early on when a goal for Ross County made have made it a different game altogether,

It was nice to see Roberts and Griffiths come on as substitutes. Roberts is a class act, and Griffiths possibly was really not on for long enough to make a difference. It is good that the languid Dembele is being pushed for his place. Scott Sinclair was more active than of late, but I would have loved to see him getting a goal, while James Forrest was quieter than he has been.

Ross County, I have always had a soft spot for. They are an excellent example of what a small town club can do, and they may yet avoid relegation, although on today’s form, it doesn’t look very likely. The goalkeeper had a good few saves before he injured himself and was taken off.

Even on the odd occasion when the play got dull, there was still the Green Brigade to listen to and watch. Some of the singing was a little off key, but the enthusiasm was inspirational with their support clearly appreciated by the players and the rest of the crowd.

So Dundee on Wednesday, Hamilton on Sunday, then the semi-final the following Sunday. It would be nice to take the field at Hampden on 15 April, mathematically certain of the League title. It is possible, although a little unlikely for it depends on other teams. But there was a radiance and a confidence about the team today which I liked. Back to back trebles beckon, but there is no place at Celtic Park for Mr and Mrs Complacency!

The Celtic Star Man of the Match – Stuart Armstrong

David Potter

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds 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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