The definition of insanity
Repeating the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity I’ve heard it said. With that in mind I tried to put myself in Lenny’s shoes at the moment and asked just what would I do right now.
Would I introduce a new look Celtic side, switch out half the team, or mark Saturday down as a bad day at the office for that 11 ?
Neil Lennon has faced many big decisions in his time with the club, but what to do next must rank up there as the biggest decision yet.
Go down fighting is another old saying, one that most of us will probably agree with.
It’s the best option Neil has I think and it’s exactly what I would do if in his role.
It might also buy him a bit of time if needed.
After a very abject performance any manager in any league is faced with the option of stick or twist. After a one off bad performance the same eleven absolutely deserve the chance to show it was a blip, and good teams always have a backlash performance right away to make sure a single defeat is only that and nothing more serious.
But we haven’t looked like a good team in a long time though.
So with Pittodrie in mind rather than the Milan game, which will take care of itself, should we trust the same group to gell and produce a back on track performance?
Or would that be the definition of insanity and push Neil closer to the door?
I believe it would be the latter and as such would ring the wholesale changes, to be honest I don’t see much other choice when the usual suspects are marching you out of a job.
In that case what have you got to lose?
From the supporters perspective a totally revamped team is always interesting and at least we wouldn’t be sitting here thinking how does he expect different results with the same players?
In theory those drafted in from the outskirts of the squad and given a chance in the first team should play out of their skin to impress and at least stay in the mix, and the opposite is also theoretically true that dropped first teamers should up their game now they have serious competition.
When one also adds the simple fact that the opposition manager can’t prepare tactics for this new look side considering no one knows how they will play yet, and therefore his players are less prepared than normal, then maybe mass change is a no brainer.
Many of the support would applaud the fact underperforming players eventually saw the bench after what they perceived as a totally lackless performance when the opposite was needed.
It was last Christmas when the gaffer went to Dubai with similar problems that he hit upon a new formation, realising that a deep drifting Eddy needed another striker ahead of him to play in, he alone holding up was not going to win the league. It’s exactly that type of analysis and thinking the manager needs to find right now with the aim of saving his job,, tinkering during the Christmas break would be wishful thinking at this stage.
In my humble opinion first and foremost we need some solidity, some strength, the ending of feeling vulnerable, a base to build upon. That’s either four at the back or if sticking with three, then equally three of the midfield five must form a solid screen in front of them.
With the defense being new plus short on numbers it naturally falls to the midfield then to be the ‘you shall not cross’ line in the sand.
Broony Calmac and Ryan have been granted the starting berths and expected to screen but that must end, much too easy to play against, cant hold a solid line and they have been sussed now. The first two couldn’t help getting passed around at the weekend. Fan-a-tic has often stated he thinks they are the root of our problem.
We need to bring the fringe midfielders in now.
These include Dembele, Turnbull, Rogic,Soro, Henderson, Connell, and Mikey Johnson.
I know I’m not alone on the blog in thinking big Kris Ajer could do a job in his previous role and as such his name should come into the mix as should Nir Bitton.
Again what does Lenny have to lose by offering some a run of games?
I know exactly what he will get if he doesn’t, more of the same. See the title.
Could we treat Europe as the testing ground for Sunday SPL games, handing out chances galore effectively writing it off as glorified practice sessions with the aim of seeing who exactly has what?
You will have your own answer but if that’s what it takes to bring home the tenth and we weren’t going to win it anyway, then it’s a yes from me plus that would make it exciting rather than nerve racking. I certainly don’t think we should see the same team fielded twice this week, I would keep many fresh for the Aberdeen game, Broony in particular if he is nailed on to play.
Most importantly we need some new tactics to give to these players, as now we know the current system more than likely won’t bring home the title again, and will only increase calls for Neils head. Time to go to the well again Lenny, get the thinking cap on and the drawing board out, concoct some magic formula for us.
Two up front saved the day last year, big lesson there.
We never again start games without two real strikers, the two who manage to gel will automatically start is a good rule to promote internal competition.
The two (or three) up top need to run channels a lot, not get in each other’s zones, form an understanding, plus look to provide the supporting midfielders if their partner isn’t free or best positioned.
To be stationary must become a cardinal sin, to be aware of the others position as natural as breathing.
Of course we need to get the ball to these strikers to let them put it in the net.
You wont need me to tell you this is sadly lacking with our backwards and sideways play, ironically what the gaffer himself did in the Hoops a lot. With that in mind the choice is to bypass midfield, play down the wings and into box, or creative midfielders providing through balls, or a mix of all three of course.
Wing play has just not worked for us this season, Frimps and Forrest too easy to nullify and it was noticeable our rival sets up to double team the bhoy on the wing. That avenue looks unfruitful.
Creative midfielder with through balls, hasn’t happened so far. There’s an argument to say we have them, but there’s a counter argument to say it would be folly to play that style. From one quarter of the league pitches being artificial grass that isn’t conducive to silky play, to we cannot rely on Tom Rogic full time (which has been shown), to the hammer throwers will just identify our skillful players and hack them out of the game leaving us toothless, there is no doubt endorsing this system would carry a massive risk.
Bypassing the midfield may be the lesser of three evils, looks the best option currently where I’m sitting. Again, what does Lenny have to lose plus no one will bitch about the style if it delivers the league.
Now that we know for certain clubs are discussing what to do in the event of curtailment due to Covid-19, the old saying leagues aren’t lost in October goes out the window. Winning a league in March, April or May might just be wishful thinking and as such points per game take on much more importance. This means we can’t have a purple patch, must stick the pace and be thereabouts if we have title ambitions. This might be a curse or a bonus but there is very little time to either feel sorry for ourselves or stick with a starting eleven that’s not cutting the mustard. The strong possibility of a shorter than usual season must force Lenny’s hand to act sooner rather than later.
Its time for a revamped Celtic side.