Why Ange had to play Kyogo


For you and me, it was a dead rubber, an opportunity to watch Celtic without the pressure of winning or losing.  For the players and coaches, not so much.  The entirely-changed 11 who took the field played like they wanted to make an impact, as did an almost-as-changed Real Betis side.

The game was competitive, the nine added minutes at the end of the second half passed excruciatingly slowly; by that stage of the evening, no one’s head was in dead rubber territory.

When Albian Ajeti pulled up lame in the first half, Ange Postecoglou had plenty to ponder.  At that moment, he was left with only one fit striker, Kyogo Furuhashi, the most valuable asset in Scottish football, who was resting on the bench.

Of course Kyogo came on.  Ange did not set his team out to pull their punches, he wanted and got a performance.  He gave fringe players their opportunity.  Would it have been right for him to pull his own punches, 30 minutes into the game, by leaving his only striker on the bench?  If he expects the players to commit, he has to commit and play the game competitively.

Management is so subtle.  Selecting the right players and tactics is not nearly enough.  If you want players to follow you, you have to live the role.  Ange knew this when he told Kyogo to get stripped.

So what did we learn?  James McCarthy looks more than comfortable in a Celtic shirt every time I see him.  The player he was is slowly emerging.  Liam Scales can feel aggrieved he has not had a sniff of proper action before this week.  Stephen Welsh continues to grow into the role of Celtic central defender, a year after breaking into the team.

We finished third in a group against the third placed teams in Germany and Spain.  Collecting six points from Ferencvaros was an objective delivered, although so much more could have been achieved as we allowed comfortable positions slip in Spain and Germany.

If you are old enough, you will remember being told Celtic win trophies when they first emerge.  Perhaps the Europa Conference League will have its compensations.

Motherwell on Sunday afternoon is anything but a dead rubber.  The Celtic FC Foundation Bucket Collection returns for the first time in two years, those in need remain numerous.  The work of the Foundation does is remarkable and literally life changing at this time of year.  It is our greatest boast.

Click Here for Comments >

About Author

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. ...
  4. 6
  5. 7
  6. 8
  7. 9
  8. 10
  9. 11
  10. 12
  11. 13

  1. ONENIGHTINLISBON – could say the same about us without Kyogo and Jota. Their keeper is probably worth a few points too.

  2. lest they forget.



    in any other sporting organisation the results would have been overturned.



    steve davis still playing..



    rae, mccann, boyd, thompson still commentating,



    dodds, still involved in football,



    they should all have been sin-died from the game, and be social paraihs,



    worse of all “sir” david is still sweeping up vast swathes of edinburgh, and making a new property empire.




  3. Watching F1, Hamilton looking good for his 8th title with a little help from the stewards, perhaps.

  4. Sometimes,it’s just not your day.2 off the bar,one off the line,good goalkeeping.Hearts the better team apart from those 4 minutes.


    Raging.I was hoping for 2 points today.Maybe 3.

  5. another shocking decision – barisic grabs hearts player by the throat , thats a red card. No debate , its in the rules! instead he gives him a yellow but send off the hearts player .



    Scottish football is corrupt to the core – but Celtic are toothless and always have been. – need a McCann type to shake this up

  6. onenightinlisbon on

    DENIABHOY on 12TH DECEMBER 2021 1:01 PM



    Think we will find ourselves better man for man after the transfer window.



    Goldson hand ball – no big deal on Sky.

  7. STEBHOY – meanwhile on a golf course in Barbados, old firm fan DD rubs his hands with glee as the plan to keep Sevco afloat stays on course.

  8. Celtic XI: Hart, Juranovic, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt, Taylor, Bitton, McGregor, Forrest, Rogic, Abada, Turnbull



    Subs: Bain, McCarthy, Johnston, Shaw, Henderson, Ralston, Welsh.

  9. PeterLatchfordsBelly on

    Another big win in Edinburgh for the huns. Looks like we’re the only team capable of taking points off them.

  10. Interesting team. Didn’t see that coming at all. Will cal Mac be playing wide left? Or one Or some other variation coming?



    Very interesting.



    There are goals in that team. Would like a few from our centre backs.



    C’mon Celtic

  11. lets all do the huddle on

    the diets had plenty of possession, chances, shots corners etc



    it was their clinical-less-ness that let them down



    but that has been our problem as well



    how often are we 2 or 3 goals up with half an hour to go so we can bring players off?



    hardly ever



    we need much more clinical-ness to give some of the players a break

  12. lets all do the huddle on

    dont mind that line up , all things considered



    as i have said many times…Rogic is the man



    and Forrest will get replaced by MJ after an hour

  13. Sometimes you just have to play your best available players. Today is one Taylor has a tough game ahead as he’ll be expected to do much of the wing work I think.




    Only saw the second half but no mibbery for me.



    Hearts were well up for it and hit the bar but Boyce was their biggest threat and he was Marshalled by a unit of a defender so couldn’t use his usual physicality.



    The Ginnelly red was a second yellow.



    Devlin lunged at Barasic on the touchline and took him out, could easily been a yellow, Barasic reacted and Ginnelly got himself involved for no good reason.



    It was then handbags…



    Both Ginnelly and Barasic got booked. It was Ginnelly’s second yellow and he went – pure madness on his part. Hearts can have no complaints.



    Five minutes added time in awe.



    Rangers did not need the MiB today.



    Look an efficient, well drilled side. If we are going to win this league we need to get real.



    Hail Hail

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. ...
  4. 6
  5. 7
  6. 8
  7. 9
  8. 10
  9. 11
  10. 12
  11. 13