They Think It’s All Over….

virgil-van-dijk-celtic_3227148Call Neil Doncaster.

Tell him to have the engraver etch the name of Aberdeen FC on the plinth of the SPFL trophy, if he isn’t too busy trying to save Sevco.

There seems to be an awful lot of bed-wetting over the fact that Celtic are adrift in the title race as of today. Don’t they have a game in hand?

I’ll lay my cards on the table and say that Celtic will still win the league come May. It might be tighter than it has been over the last few seasons, and the margin may not be in double figures, but we’ll do it.

Many in the media, including ex-players, are basing their thoughts and outright bias on a couple of recent performances. Those who never thought Deila should be manager are lining up, and the clubs historical enemies and are creaming themselves at the thought.

The sub-editors will have the headlines written already.

Celtic in Crisis.

What’s the truth? The club could have and should have taken something at Tannadice, bearing in mind that they had a perfectly legitimate goal chalked off. Ross County at Celtic Park was simply inexcusable.

But as we all know, these type of games do happen and have happened even under Celtic’s best managers. Kilmarnock, on Monday night, was not an improvement as much as it was like watching a different team.

Ronny Deila isn’t worried that Celtic aren’t starting the New Year top of the league because he’s confident that his group of players are good enough. If we win the game in hand, we’re back on top.

Fair play to Aberdeen; they’re playing very well, but cast your mind back to early November when Deila’s side won 2-1 at Pittodrie. Beating to top teams is the mark of champions, and the Dons will have to show they’ve got it by taking points from us.

Their current run is good but as well as the our win over them, they only narrowly beat Partick Thistle at Firhill and then suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Dundee before it began. Like Celtic, they lok vulnerable at times … but our squad is stronger and more capable of dealing with injuries or suspensions.

Nobody is discounting Aberdeen, but the media seems hell bent of doing it to Deila’s men, casting doubt over their ability, and that of the Celtic manager, in his first season.

The contrast between Deila and others is easy to see. It was only near the end of McCoist’s tenure that we started to see the knives being sharpened.

It’s hard not to conclude that everyone outside of Celtic wants the club to fail. I get that. No team outside of Celtic or Rangers has been top dog for 30 years.

Celtic are Goliath and Aberdeen at present are David. Everyone loves an underdog, and when that underdog is challenging Celtic it’s all the better for the press.

All talk of trebles should be binned, banned and put to 2nd in the list of priorities. I also believe that Europe in now a hinderance – Inter Milan, is of course, a cracking tie, but one I think we’ll struggle to get through.

The league title is the pinnacle, and this season more than most. Neither Lenny nor Strachan won a treble. It’s the rarest thing in the game, so much so that only the late, great Jock Stein and Martin O’Neill have managed it at this club.

Deila should simply state that the League is the one we’re looking at.

For the time being.

Do you really think such negativity would be surrounding Celtic had they been on top going into the New Year? Celtic has 20 games to go so we’re not even half way there. Yes, there’ve been some howlers but some impressive performances too.

The good news for Celtic is that Jason Denayer will soon return to partner Virgil Van Dijk which means Efe Ambrose may forego his defensive duties.

Celtic do have some quality in their ranks, but we definitely need Guidetti to get his shooting boots back on. Does anyone else think that Scott Brown is going to let the grip on the title slip easily? Will he let his troops surrender easily?

Whilst Celtic has stuttered in recent games, Aberdeen did so at the start of the season and could easily do so again.

Let’s cast our minds back before the poor results against Dundee United and Ross County Celtic had won eight games on the trot and five of them came with clean sheets. There are always hiccups. Celtic have scored more and conceded less than anyone else.

Has the football been painful to watch at times? Hell yeah. But when a certain dead club used to grind out wins we always heard how “winning ugly” was what got you titles. Leagues are won on those days when the points don’t come easily.

The hysteria and hyperbole kicked into high gear when Celtic’s game against Partick Thistle was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch. One other fixture in the UK was called off – I believe it was Alfreton Town. Take note Mr. Doncaster.

Questions should be asked of Derek McInnes’s side too. Are they good enough and consistent enough to stay top? The pressure now sits with them. Talking a good game is easy, but you need to experience – and master – the pressure or talk is all it is. The same pressure was applied to them last year, in the Scottish Cup.

They reached the semi final, and that’s where they cracked.

Celtic have jetted out to Gran Canaria after the win at Kilmarnock, and that will provide a nice respite from the game for a week whlst Aberdeen continue to be in the public eye. That might just have an effect too.

The bottom line is that Aberdeen need to win every game.

From a football perspective I really hope Aberdeen maintain their form and seriously challenge Celtic – it’s needed and may lead to putting bums on seats again.

A true title race will get everyone’s heart pumping and bear in mind, Aberdeen have Celtic Park to visit on 1st March which could be a cracker.

When Virgil Van Dijk coolly slotted home that last-minute win against a Dons side earlier in the season that was massive psychological blow to Aberdeen and their fans. The champions laid the marker down.

I jumped right out of my seat that day punching the air. I let a few expletives out to, through sheer relief. I want my football to be that exciting (well most weeks).

As the news filtered through on New Year’s Day that the Glasgow derby match was off I questioned the sanity of Celtic flying out on a break but I think it may do them the world of good and will give Deila the chance to get in every player’s ear individually.

A good bit of bonding does any team a world of good and helps relax them and help them get ready for a hectic few months.

The majority of Celtic’s players know what it’s like to win a title too. They know the battle ahead of them. They know the feeling of winning it. Only Barry Robson at Aberdeen has had the good fortune of lifting the SPL trophy – and he did it with Celtic.

To me, this is what will count at the end of the season

It’s only in some sections of the press that, they think it’s all over….

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Gavin McCann

A dipsomaniac funambulist steadying himself on life’s tightrope through the medium of writing. I “suffer” from diphallic terata with mild polyorchidity. Like a dug wi’ two dicks.

8 thoughts on “They Think It’s All Over….

  • 7 January, 2015 at 4:58 pm
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    Have you heard that potential League Cup semi final referee Bobby Madden is a past, and who knows maybe still a current, season ticket holder at £brox.
    How can he carry out his reffing duties without fear or favour?
    Are there no other candidates who maybe aren’t so blatant in their bias?

  • 7 January, 2015 at 6:28 pm
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    I know madden personally , he was a supervisor at a place I worked a good few years ago and he told me a story about him refereeing a Glasgow cup final before he got the big games but it was celtic v rangers under 21s and he sent 2 celtic players aff for nothing and gave rangers a, in his words “non-existant penalty” and was laughing saying he knew who he wanted to win! He did the exact same against dundee utd a couple of years ago at celtic park. If he is refereeing the game then there will be a right few strange or should I say “non-existant” decisions for one team only!

  • 7 January, 2015 at 8:11 pm
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    Boydychenkos Substitute appearance for Sevco against Hibs he has a go at least 4 Hibs Players,Madden waves away the Hibs players protest with a Smirk…….you aint seen nothing yet….. H H

  • 7 January, 2015 at 9:51 pm
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    Honest competition for honours in Scottish football is exactly what we need right now to dispel the stench of corruption emanating from Hampden.
    Regan’s prophesy of Armageddon has proved totally wrong. The Scottish Premiership is the most competitive league in Europe with just 5 points separating the top 5 teams. Most clubs finances are healthier than they have been for a generation. ie since murraynomics came into play. And that’s without a league sponsor and a pathetic TV deal.
    Now we have the manager of Hamilton Accies being tasked to take Norwich City into the EPL. Imagine that 3 years ago. Armageddon, right enough.
    Meanwhile Sevco have passed the begging bowl around 3 continents looking for their 3rd crisis loan in as many months, with failure to gain promotion now a very real possibility. Maybe the sensible berrz will now step up to the plate and deal with this farce. My sides can’t take much more.
    I dearly want Celtic to win the league but they must prove they’re the best team and if Aberdeen or anyone else mount a meaningful challenge, then it makes any victory worth more. Bring it on!

  • 7 January, 2015 at 9:55 pm
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    You hit a few nails on the head there JP.
    Main one is Scott Brown,who has kept Deila in a job.
    Without Scott,Celtic struggle.
    Aberdeen will have to win every game,and Celtic won’t???.
    Sorry mate but Deila is not up to the job.
    How many decent sides have we beaten in 44 matches,NONE.
    I agree with your assumption,only we should be humping every club in the Premier league,and the reason we are not is Deila.
    Until our supporters realise that Deila needs to go,we will struggle.

  • 8 January, 2015 at 11:41 am
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    I think Delia has been thrown to the lions without any proper investment. Lennon seen the writing on the wall and left because if budget.

    Deila’s football philosophy is all well and good in an ideal world meaning they would have the player’s that could carry this ideology out.

    His inability to change from what he believes in could be his ultimate downfall.

    He can only be judged when the silverware is handed out.

  • 8 January, 2015 at 6:47 pm
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    I know Bobby well, worked with the guy a long time and still in contact with him and if you knew anything about him is that he’s a big wind up merchant. He refereed Hibs v Rangers this season, Hibs won 4-0. He refereed Rangers v Dundee Utd in the semi final last season, Utd won 3-1. The season before that he refereed Stirling v Rangers, Stirling won 1-0. I’d rather have him that Wullie Collum any day of the week. Nevertheless, Craig Thomson is going to get the semi final and either way if we don’t give that mob a doing, it will be an embarrassment.

  • 8 January, 2015 at 8:23 pm
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    john hate to disagree,but your x working buddy has got us versus Sevco in the semi.regarding our willie (the dallas clone)his last two sending offs have been written off,Steven Mcmanus and Mclean of St Mirren,most of the referees in Scotland I would not referee a bowls match.

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