I’m largely ignoring the defensive lapses of last night. There will be at least two changes for the Champions League, and everyone will be far more attentive. It was, though, a concern that both Kilmarnock goals came as a result of Celtic’s left-hand-side being breached.
Malmo’s Age Hareide will have noted this, and whatever attacking resources he deploys next week are likely to try to exploit a perceived weakness. Ronny will have a choice: Izzie or Charlie? My money’s on the latter.
Tom Rogic didn’t have the perfect game but it was good to see him take so much responsibility. He’s looked like the office junior of the Celtic midfield on previous outings, as did Nir Bitton for most of his early games. If Rogic has genuine talent, we need to let him find his feet in games like these.
Ronny Deila answered all questions after the game but gave little away. I hope his dismissal of injury worries was accurate. Kris Commons is the gravy in his pie. We are capable of beating anyone without Kris, but we need him doing his thing if we are to take a comfortable victory to Sweden.
Yesterday I was looking over Celtic’s form in November 2006 after doing an interview for a French magazine, who are writing a piece on Shunsuke Nakamura. That was the month Naka scored the goal which sent us top of the group and into the knock-out rounds of the Champions League for the first time – with a game to spare, no less.
It’s less well remembered that earlier that month we went out of the League Cup after losing at home to Falkirk on penalties, or that we couldn’t win at Easter Road immediately after the Champions League win.
Indifferent performances and results surround some of our greatest European performances. Getting it right when it counts is what matters.