Cup finals remain in our collective memories long after the event, cup final goals especially. For this reason, I want Kyogo to be fit tomorrow. He is a special player who has contributed greatly to our lives over the last two seasons. A star of two League Cup finals, he has yet to feature in a Scottish Cup Final. For what he has done for us, he deserves every chance to play.
Sentiment aside, Oh is a more than capable deputy. He will almost certainly play a part tomorrow and will add to his growing reputation.
Tomoki Iwata should partner Carl Starfelt in central defence. Celtic lack height in the team and Iwata in defence leaves us more challenged in this aspect when defending (and attacking) set-pieces. High balls into the box are the staple of lower league teams when facing top opposition as they lack the craft to breakdown an organised defence. Whenever Inverness get into the Celtic half, expect the ball to go wide then floated into the space above Iwata’s 5’ 10” frame. At the very least, we can expect him not to be easily shoved aside.
My rule of thumb is that Daizen Maeda does better against teams who attack Celtic and is less effective when they defend deep, denying him the space to exploit his pace and industry. However Ange Postecoglou will surely start him and Jota in the wide attacking positions. Liel Abada’s appearance is likely to be as a second half substitute.
In the continued absence of Aaron Mooy through injury, the midfield of Callum McGregor, Reo Hatate and Matt O’Riley picks itself. Inverness will do well to keep tabs on those three.
It is with a heavy heart I write about Billy Dodds. He seems an affable character that I have no dislike for. Whenever I hear his name, his part in the Grand Conspiracy to hide facts and money from the SFA, the SPL and HMRC, are first to mind.
As I highlighted on CQN in May 2012 at the height of the Rangers Oldco/Newco frenzy, ex-Rangers player Dodds wrote in The Herald, “David Murray came to me and asked if I would receive a payment that was due to me, after tax, through the EBT trust. And I said that I would. It was money that was owing to me when I had six months left on my contract and I moved to Dundee United. After the tax was deducted, that money was put in the trust fund.”
He was one of the few who went on the record to confirm that money paid into his EBT was contractual salary and was subject to payroll taxes, adding that David Murry deducted payroll taxes before paying into Dodds EBT. If this is the case, Dodds was very badly advised, given he became embroiled in an issue which afforded him zero benefit.
Police Scotland were quick to act against one side in the battle for the ‘bag of assets’ which constituted Newco Rangers, but showed no interest in evidence from Dodds. Welcome to Scotland, where conspiracies are written up by involved parties in The Herald but remain out of reach by the authorities. Billy remains available to give evidence, he’ll not be difficult to find at Hampden.
Win the Scottish Cup tomorrow. Do it for the world-record eighth treble, for everything we were denied during the financial doping years, for the decades spent when such successes were a fantasy. These are great days to be a Celtic supporter, enjoy them!