The Next Ten Days
Some good stuff on display from us at the weekend,not the least of which was to deny St Johnstone as much as a shot on goal. There are two ways to look at this of course,and the first method is to dwell on the failures of our opposition on the day. I prefer though to look at how they were set up,which was the familiar method of the opposition when we play-to wit,two banks of five and try to hit us on the break.
Well,they never looked remotely near to hitting us on the break,and that is testament to how quickly they were closed down whenever they tried that,whether it be by our midfield,our fullbacks,or our two central defenders.
As I said on the day,CCV and Starfelt are really looking the part in recent games,and the longer they continue to play together,the better that partnership will become. They are really gelling as a unit,and we have a short schedule of four games in ten day to come prior to the next international break for them to continue their development. AP can then sit back and have a review of how the first third of the season has gone,individually and collectively.
He will know that mistakes were made early on as we struggled to assimilate so many new players into the team,and for him to impress upon the players old and new how he wanted them to play within the system that he preferred. He hasn’t allowed the early setbacks to bother him or to knock him off his stride. He knows full well too that our media up here are waiting with sharpened knives and pitchforks for any sign of a stumble. I’ve got news for them-stumble or not,title or not,AP is no quitter,he is here to stay.
So too,I hope,are Jota and CCV,who are both on loan with an option to buy at £6m and £2m respectively. Considering that Starfelt cost us £5m and Jullien £7m,I’d say that CCV is a bargain at that price,so snap him up ASAP. I suspect that he is on a higher wage at Spurs though,which might be a stumbling block.
There should be no such problem with Jota though,and the sooner we tie him up,the better. Sign him before the word gets out,before his form attracts perhaps more attractive suitors!
It wouldn’t have been a Celtic game if there hadn’t been a refereeing “controversy” to contend with,and this one gave us two individual moments as well as the usual mishandling of the game in general. As the oxymoronic Saints resorted more to thuggery in their efforts to contain us,we were rightly awarded a penalty-which was hotly disputed by the usual suspects in the media,and also by the Saints manager after the match. I dunno what constitutes a penalty in their book,but I’m assuming something along the lines of an amputation without anaesthetic? The other one saw Kane being merely booked after bundling CCV to the ground and then having three hard kicks at him as he landed on top of the ball. Stuff like this will only continue while the club remain supine in their acceptance of it.
And so we move onto the next ten days of football which sees us away in the double header against Ferencvaros,plus three important league games-one of which SKY has graciously deigned to cover for the armchair fans. They really are ripping the piss on this one,as I think they have declined to show three away matches of ours come tomorrow night. Presumably their pundits are using their home season tickets elsewhere that night?
Win in Europe,and we give ourselves every chance of remaining in the tournament after Christmas. Win the three league games,and our momentum carries us into and hopefully out of that international break. These are targets which we should be setting ourselves,breaking the season down into segments with the breaks being the internationals and then the winter shutdown. Keep that momentum going as we approach the latter,and we will see which side is best equipped to handle pressure.
It’s these imminent four games that we must concentrate on first. Then when we return we are faced with two more matches in Europe plus a League Cup semi-final. Then from the last weekend in November till the first weekend in January,we face no fewer than NINE league matches.
We know what we have to do,the manager knows it,and we are seeing with our own eyes that not only do the players know it too,they are actually beginning to show real belief. Maintain that belief,lads. It’s half the battle done for you!
Above article by BMCUWP