Celtic Diary Monday September 24: Crisis ? This Crisis.
I was at Kilmarnock yesterday, hoping to see Celtic.
Are they there yet ?
You know what I did see ?
Supporters not supporting, players not playing, and a manager not managing.
As a result, Kilmarnock secured all three points and all of the above looked around for something or someone to blame when in fact all anyone has to do is look in the rear view mirror when they get back into the car to see the solution.
Brendan Rodgers, who according to some whispers, handed in his notice during the summer, saying he’d serve only one more year, looked as though he’d rather be somewhere else, anywhere else in fact, which is probably enough evidence to support the story that he told his agents to find another club.
Want to know what Dembele called him out on ? This, and not what we previously thought.
Well, our French forward figured that if Brendan wasn;t going to hang around, then he wasn’t either.
Olivier Ntcham then decided he’d follow his compatriate out the door, but he wasn’t allowed to. I thought at the time it was odd that Ntcham, who actually turned down a better offer from Manchester city to go to Girona wanted out, but it does make sense now.
Poor Oddsone Edouard, he thought he’d be part of a Triple Entente at Celtic, now he’s signed up for four years and his pals are fighting to get to the door. Well, one’s already away through it.
If Rodgers has indeed chucked it in spirit, then immediate blame will be placed at the door of the board.
I’m no fan of the board, but a list of recent Rodgers signings might just hint at why they weren’t prepared to back him with more money. Especially if he had handed in his notice.
Having said that, this month around five million pounds will find its way into the players bank accounts, so it cannot be said that the money hasn’t been spent.
Sure, there’s still plenty in the bank, but it will empty fairly quickly at that rate.
If Rodgers does want out, then let him go.
His tantrums appear to indicate that he thinks he’s bigger than the club, and that cannot be allowed.
If, however, he wants to stay, then he needs support. From the supporters, and i did my bit by not singing along with songs about the Irish Republican Army, because as far as I was aware, none of them were playing yesterday.
In fact, its probably fair to say that none of them have ever donned the hoops and so therefore its a bit of a mystery as to why they are acclaimed from the stands.
We all love a tune from time to time, especially after a few beers, but its hard to see any of the players upping their game when the chorus of Broad Black Brimmer cascades from the heavens.
Ah, the players. They’re doing what they are told.
I was in the Weatherpoons eating breakfast when the team news came out.
Immediately, I said we’d win 7-0. A figurative demonstration of enthusiasm which disappeared about thirty seconds into the game when the Kilmarnock defence lined up in tow banks of four and the Celtic forwards implemented their encircling movement.
Different faces, same look.
And it didn’t look good. Then again, it hasnt looked good for a while. Its not the players that are the problem, its the system, and we could all see that yesterday whether we were in the stand or watching on the telly.
In fact, we could probably see that if we were listening on the radio.
Despite the fact that if the board had backed Rodgers and Lionel Messi and Christain Ronaldo had jojned in the summer, it was obvious that even those two would have been told to pass the ball square until one of the Kilmarnock defenders fell asleep.
Tedious, predicatable, and ultimately self defeating.
Thats not to absolve the players, by the way.
Why can none of them take a free kick or a corner with any degree of accuracy ?
Thats a technique, and techniques can be learned…technique should be practiced, and then when you think they’ve got the hang of it, keep them behind for extra practice.
Only Yousseff Mulumba provided a moment of hope yesterday.
Finally Celtic have a player who won’t take any shit from opponents.
We’re going to need him and his attitude in the coming weeks.
So far I’ve missed out the board in this particular rant, but don’t worry.
Its their turn now.
Whilst Rodgers is paid a hell of a lot of money to manage, and can be rightfully accused of failing in that instruction, tracing this malaise back along the last few months seems to lead to one particular point.
Remember the guy from Sporting Lisbon, the right back ?
The one where Rodgers agreed the deal and Lawwell vetoed it ?
It seems to have led to a breakdown in the working relationship between the two. A meeting in Dublin recently with Dermot Desmond and Stan and Ollie present appears to have ended rather acrimoniously, which means that one of them has reached the end of the line.
It won’t be Lawwell.
He’ll get his arse kicked again, and lock himself in his office like he usually does, but he’ll survive.
But the fact is that if he has given Rodgers control of the team then the manager must be allowed to stand or fall on his own decisions.
To overrule him on a signing means that the manager is not in control, and at any football club, that is the beginning of the end.
Apart from anything else though, the overriding concern now is that the team is performing poorly, and talk of a treble treble may well come to a shuddering halt this week when Celtic face St johnstone in the League Cup.
Tommy Wright will tell his players that its a good time to be playing Celtic.
In the league Celtic have scored once away from home, and picked up only one point in three games.
Celtic travel to Perth this week…