Memory lane – Stephen Mc Manus
The big conference call is later in the week where all associations will be briefed, and I’m expecting a ‘you guys sort it out yourselves’ type of message from the top table.
As that means we will probably see some type of announcement late next week from our governing bodies that does give us some time to kill before pouring over their decision, which I fully expect to confirm us as Champions.
As such we shall shall go where the blog loves to go,
Memory lane it is. There’s a couple of crackers waiting in the wings for later in the week but I thought I would get the ball rolling.
One of the benefits of discussing ex players is that the scapegoat label can’t be thrown around. What’s done is done and is there to be analyzed in the cold light of day with emotions set aside.
So with that in mind I invite the blog to ponder the following question, ,
Was big Stephen Mc Manus an underrated Hoop or one who was fortunate to wear the jersey?
Or perhaps somewhere in between?
I first recall coming across young Master Mac Manus when Martin started him at left back on one of my rare visits.
This was the last year of Martin, the dining out on his legend year while he was understandably more focussed on his soul mates health.
He hadn’t been given much funds then and Jamie Smith was getting a wee run on the right wing about then also if you recall.
I remember sitting in the stand looking at this big gangly kid probably 18 or so with a left peg, thinking this might be interesting.
He was as interesting as watching paint dry!
It was as if Martin said they are gonna focus on you just knock it long or out of play.
I don’t think he made it into their half the entire game which means he wasn’t allowed to.
Never disobeyed the teachers orders once.
Somehow Gordon decided it was Big Stephen for the armband, no doubt thinking he would grow with the captaincy. I don’t think he did personally.
In a limited side he had at one time a choice of Jari Jirosik, Masimo Donati, Thomas Graveson, in front of him while Aiden and Naka didn’t provide much cover.
Gary Caldwell was the usual.partner in crime more often than not and somehow the two became a formidable partnership that delivered in the main. How is still a mystery? Perhaps I underrated him. The stats suggest so yet watching him I just never got that sense of leadership.
The highlight was clearly a San Siro last 16 exit at the hands of Kaka but for the life of me I still don’t understand why stand off rather than immediately close down but them’s the breaks.
The scorer went onto have a decent career.
That the Well ended up his destination should ultimately show that he just wasn’t top drawer but a solid campaigner. The Captaincy designed to being him on could be argued either way I believe. Reaching the knock out phase with such a team may well be considered fortunate, but that luck was based upon work and taking your chances when they arrive. That year anyway, it served us well.
It was a surprise when he was announced as the man to wear the armband, but a look at the team then shows it wasn’t a straight forward pick.
The two strikers shouldn’t be made to feel unequal ruling them out.
The temperamental Aiden and the fleeting genius Naka weren’t ideal candidates at all.
Lee Naylor is no leader of men, Hinkel also.
That left the men in the middle, and that area was in a state of flux.
Or the keeper, and while Artur was quality, he did let slip with the cigars and the weight, plus he had those Epl ambitions which we helped fulfill so maybe a passer through wasn’t the smart play either.
Stephen was a safe choice, and I’m sure a few though it might have brought him on. It didn’t really though did it.
Big Tony Mowbray just didnae like the cut of his job and away he went to Boro on loan then permanent. No surprise at all he ended up back locally at the Well as he was limited and injury prone, but a model professional none the less.
I consider any mortal who captained our team fortunate, and Stephen must go down as such,, as they all do,, but generally you get the sense the Celtic captain is one hell of a playet, rather than one hell of a man. That’s not to begrudge the fella one instant of having that special armband on, for I think he himself felt the privilege and at all times tried to uphold all that that should entail.
So I ask you, how did you rate your ex captain?
Was he your choice then for the armband?
If not, who back then?
Fond memories of those times?
Should he have halved Kaka? Would we have won then?
Spill your thoughts on big Mick please.
Sure what else are ya doing?
The above is by Mahe. If anyone in the greater Glasgow area is in need just contact us as we have feet on the ground. We don’t care what team, poster or not. If you need some help just email firstname.lastname@example.org