Livingston manager David Martindale is one of those people opposition fans find it easy to parody. When he claimed to have ‘pound-for-pound’ the best team in the league, one online wit called him the best ‘gram-for-gram’ manager. Many of us were grateful when life offered a second (or subsequent) chance, what matters now is that David is an example of what can be, if you make the right decisions.
Admirable, as he undoubtedly is, I don’t like his football, or the pitch it is played on every second game. Livingston would have the game banned, if that was all we could watch. Still, though, what’s he to do?
Tomorrow a group of international footballers, many with Champions League and World Cup experience behind them, arrive at the Plastic Pasta Stadium to face a squad of players who would rather be anywhere else in the football food chain. We have no right to ask them to play any different than how they will.
Martindale knows how to get results. The current FA Premier Manager of the Month left the corresponding fixture at Livi empty handed two years ago. His side were as tight as a drum at the back and waited for an opportunity to present itself. A bounce of the plastic was enough to deceive Stephen Welsh.
It is incredible how momentum builds and falls in football. Brendan Rodgers knows enough about the game to put Tuesday’s result behind him and do whatever necessary to inject confidence and energy into his side. After going out of the League Cup on our only other game on plastic this season, you could suggest it is imperative to show we learned to better prepare for the surface.
While we are in a generous mood to others, imagine a mid-table Premiership side winning in Europe last night! Second bottom of the table almost took a point in Germany too.