Just as we predicted the ‘Honest Mistake’ ahead of last week’s Scottish Cup semi final it was always going to be part of the script that Celtic would get the “even things up” penalty when a few goals ahead in a preceding match. Today was the day for that penalty with Celtic in cruise control, two goals ahead and with Dundee United having long since thrown in the towel on this league match after playing very well in the first half.
Leigh Griffiths reckons it was a wrong call as the challenge was just outside the box. Nevertheless the popular striker, who has made the loan striker role his own through hard work and professionalism, was thankful to the nominated penalty taker Kris Commons for handing him the ball so that he could complete his second hat trick in the last few weeks.
After the match Griffiths said: “I heard it was outside the box but we were due a bit of luck after the semi-final last week so I will take it and take the match ball too.
“Kris Commons is the normal penalty taker but I said to him I was on my hat-trick so he handed me the ball.
“He is good like that. He did it with Anthony Stokes earlier in the season so I am happy he gave me it.”
Celtic manager was in no mood to accept that last week’s ‘Honest Mistake” – which effectively cost Celtic a Treble – was compensated for today by the wrong call on the late penalty. Big Virgil would probably have scored the free kick anyway!
Asked if these decisions do even themselves out over the course of a season Deila responded”I agree but what happened last Sunday was not normal.
“This is a totally different thing. I rarely talk about referees’ decisions but last Sunday was a thing that really affected the game.
“It was a totally different thing. And the cup of course, is one game, so it is different. If it was wrong today it would not have affected the game.
“If it was only 1-0 I could understand it could be an issue. I don’t mind if we win 2-0 or 3-0, we deserved to win the game.”
One thing is for sure. If Ronny Deila didn’t know what Celtic have to face to win trophies then he sure does know now. That should be a valuable piece of knowledge as he prepares for his second season in charge of the Bhoys.