It is great having big game players, those who can raise the tempo to match greater challenges, Moussa was a classic of this genre, but watching the first half on Friday, the flip side of that mentality appeared evident. St Mirren were in a big game, and showed it, Celtic were going through the motions. I expect normal service to resume for Rosenborg on Thursday, but we better resolve this symptom before travelling to Perth on League Cup duty.
Hearts boss, Ann Budge, must have taken the weekend off to celebrate her team being top of the league, as she has allowed video of sectarian chanting by Hearts fans leaving Fir Park on Saturday to pass without comment. Never slow to shine a light elsewhere, if she would rather not address this festering feature when things are going so well, you can be sure it is there to stay.
On John McGinn choosing Aston Villa over Celtic……… When he made his decision I wrote that after speaking to both teams, he went to Villa because he wanted to play first team football. Unlike reports elsewhere, he didn’t move south because Celtic would not meet his wage demands (thinking in particular of Scott McDonald flogging this on Radio Scotland).
The player gave newspaper interviews to several Scottish Sundays confirming, “Playing regularly was the biggest factor in choosing Aston Villa over Celtic, says John McGinn”, as The Herald put it. But that doesn’t fit the narrative, so will soon be forgotten.
Don’t blame it on the football.
Don’t blame it on the career advice.
Don’t blame it on the reality.
Blame it on the Celtic. Lots of others do.
What’s the point of Celtic?
Winter is approaching, the time when the Celtic FC Foundation does some of its most important work. It is also the time of greatest need. I know the challenge ahead for those who work through the Foundation. There is enormous poverty in our own communities.
I signed up for the Great Scottish Run, which takes place in Glasgow on 30 September, in aid of the Foundation. I have not run as far as a Half Marathon in over a year, I ran a few miles short on Saturday before giving up. But I know what those who will be helped by the Foundation will be like in December. Some things are worth the work.
We need to do something, otherwise what’s the point of Celtic? We both know it’s not just about football. Work on the big winter projects is already underway, if you can help by sponsoring me, please do so here.