The Course Of True Love Never Did Run Smooth.
Shakespeare said that,and if he’d also said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder,I’d have put him forward as one of the earliest Celtic fans!
I’ve said before that you could have ten Celtic fans in a room and get eleven different opinions. All of them formed from the same sentiment,of course-a love for Celtic and a desire to see us successful.
I don’t think any of us were over the moon when our previous manager left. Some of us were pissed off at him for leaving at all,while others were more concerned that he had jumped ship in mid season,just before two important away matches in Edinburgh-matches which could have a defining effect on our treble hopes had we lost them.
So Neil Lennon stepped in as interim manager,simply for the rest of the season. He finished off what BR had started,guiding us over the next three months to a famous Treble Treble. Would it have been fair to him to say “Thanks,mate” and send him packing after that?
Probably not. But life’s not always fair,and our leadership have a duty to employ the best management team that they can. I wasn’t the only person here or elsewhere who disagreed that Neil was the best available to us at the time,nor was I the only one concerned for the coming season.
We also had an entire defence to replace,and there was a definite concern that Lenny would not be in a position to demand the best. After all,PL seemed to have sat on his hands for most summers previous to this,and that with managers with a much stronger hand than Lenny,so he hardly had the best record in that regard.
So where are we now,five months and a transfer window after Neil’s appointment to the full-time position? We signed five defenders who we expected to be ready to fight for the first team,at a cost of around £15m. Plus Fraser Forster in goal. We still haven’t seen Greg Taylor,but none of them filled us with much hope when we first saw them.Two months or so down the line and I have to say I’m impressed with Bauer,Elhamed,Jullien,Boli. And of course,Fraser. We didn’t really need to sign anyone for elsewhere,and so we didn’t.
We signed four youngsters from down south,players who can help out all over the park. Defenders Jeremiah Frimpong and Lee O’Connor came from Man City and United respectively,Luca Connell from Bolton is a central mid and striker Jonathan Alofabi came up from Southampton. All four are still only teenagers and were very highly regarded at their previous clubs. They join our incumbent kids,like Michael Johnstone and Karamoko Dembele plus Armstrong Okoflex and others as bright beacons for the future. So yes,a better window than I dared hope so pass marks for that.
Results and performances though? Hmmm,if you’d asked me that after the home games with Dunfermline and Cluj,I would have diplomatically stalled on my answer. Both of those games-and a number of them before and since-revealed a major weakness of Neil’s. His inability to “rummel it aboot” either before or during the game. IMO he is far too reliant on his first eleven,a trait he probably picked up from Cloughie and MON. But with a 100% league record and a very good away draw in the Europa League,who’s to say that he is wrong? He might think that there’s plenty of time to rotate later in the season. We shall see.
So as you can see,I’m fairly content with how things are going currently. Were it not for the usual freemasonry,I believe we would already be a minimum of eight points clear. But three will do for now. Should we be making signings much earlier to give us a better chance of qualifying for the Champions League? Almost certainly,and I’m getting fed up with it. But we are where we are,so we have to deal with that.
So back to Brendan Rodgers. Do I wish he was still our manager? Very much so,but only if he was content here. I think he’d had enough over a year before his departure,fed up with certain club policies. I still think his timing sucked though. His record with us was incredible,a magnificent seven trophies won from seven available to us,as well as having us as favourites for the other two when he walked out.
I don’t think we should be trashing his record with us. I don’t think we should be trying to suggest that Lenny is a better manager either. That’s a bit like telling everyone that your stunning ex is a tramp just because she dumped you.
But feel free to get battered into him for his timing! And feel free to give Neil your/our total support. This is a crucial season for us-and for the Southside Zombies. It’s no time for splitters!!!
Above article by BMCUWP. The good news is that Mahe will be online again soon to give a different view. Don’t forget that you can all offer yours as well,just send us an article for publication and we will put it up. Every time. Mail it to Mahe