Yesterday at the Tony Macaroni was another disgrace. This simply cannot go on, if we are to win trophies. It was a game in which so many players in the green and white simply did not look Celtic class. Quite a few of them don’t seem to realise just what they have let themselves in for, and how sad it is that this season, with almost a total change of cast, performances like this (and Thursday) simply keep happening?
One cannot really at this stage begin to point the finger at the Manager. Nevertheless, it will not be long before the Celtic Manager joins the Managers of Aberdeen and Newcastle United in the “hanging on by his fingernails” category.
So was Albian Ajeti a “flash in the pan” against Ross County? What on earth has happened to David Turnbull? And when are we going have a clean sheet away from home? The mid field clearly lacks Callum McGregor and Scott Brown. Scott has now moved to to “fresh fields and pastures new” or “jumped from the frying pan into the fire”, depending on your take, and we really must get Callum back by Thursday night, if at all possible.
James McCarthy has to be given a few more games at least. The man has been ill and full fitness has not yet been achieved, but he, of all people, must realise that Celtic demand a lot more than other clubs.
It was a curious game in many ways. The silence was very noticeable the longer the second half went on, and it was indeed odd to see a team dominate the game to such an extent, yet fail to deliver much in the way of quality ball into the box.
The goal that was lost was a good one, but it was also highly preventable, and it does raise the question that if Andrew Shinnie can do such things, why can’t Celtic? Abada and Jota have both received rave reviews in their short time with us, but not yesterday. They have to realise that Scottish football is not simple, and that Scottish defences, with a passion, will always want to prevent Celtic from scoring. Something special is therefore required to counteract this.
Only to a very small extent can we blame the pitch, and we could not really find fault with the referee. Livingston did indeed play well, although we have the sinking feeling that they are in for a doing on Wednesday night (prove me wrong, Livi!), so there is only one group of players who are at fault.
The long hard look at themselves is required, plus a glance at the crowd yesterday and the looks of disappointment and betrayal that were so evident.
There must be no more such performances. Yesterday? Let’s just try to pretend that it did not happen, shall we? Yes, we are still in a position to catch up – thank you, Motherwell! – but there will be no description other than cataclysm to describe any reverse from Raith Rovers on Thursday night. They won on Saturday, beating Greenock Morton and are in reasonable form…and they have beaten us before in the League Cup. Celtic beware! A defeat is unthinkable. If we don’t win, there can be no Treble.