It’s been a long time since we’ve had a home game; 4th August, against Aberdeen. Since then we’ve played five games on the road, three of which involved international travel, with two games in the Highlands.
Statistical analysis shows that form suffers when teams are forced to pile-up away fixtures. Training schedules are interrupted as travel eats into time which would otherwise be spent fine-tuning fitness or working on defensive/forward strategy. Instead Celtic have improved enormously from their Flag Day at the beginning of the month, despite, or perhaps, because, Neil Lennon has indulged in extensive use of a squad rotation policy.
No one at Celtic will be complacent ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League play-off, the ghost of Ross County in 2010 and Inverness in 2011 will see to that. One ‘Big Dan Moment’ is all it takes to turn a comfortable lead into a tight tie with a player deficit, but I suspect Neil Lennon will be more concerned with putting the brakes on his players, rather than motivating them. A calm and organised performance is required.