Im not gonna do a Match review and ratings after that showing ( or non showing) up.
Whats the point?
We were abysmal all over, Laxalt and Ajer tried but no-one came out of Saturday with any true credit.
Instead I’m just gonna rant off a series of questions that wont stop going around my head…feel free to post your question and any answers you may have in the Comments section below.
First of all, take a second of reflection and think on this reality check:
It was a team impacted by Covid, several Star players were suddenly unavailable, Shock Late arrivals were drafted in without experience in such a fixture, Players called upon who were not at full fitness, Any tactical Game plans had to be reviewed and renewed on a near daily basis, there was no legendary Home crowd there to help spur on the side facing less we forget a well drilled and consistently manned opponent.
So the 1st Question is…Just how did Steve Clarkes Scotland get that performance and result last week under such dire circumstances?
To be honest I think the above question says it all.
Lenny and his Management Team and the Players have no excuses. We were gutless and shapeless. The lack of personnel shouldn’t make any difference to those 2 aspects of a performance. The players picked should have been up for the Challenge and knew their roles and the gameplan to be executed.
Some Questions arising from that consideration are:
Was there a Gameplan?
Did anyone see any semblance of a plan or a tactic bar the awful sight of Duffy collecting the ball, standing as if gesturing “What do I do now?” to Broony before making passing errors or punting long hopeless balls out the park? The fact that a player like Duffy, lets be honest, his strength is meant to be in getting the ball away, not playing silky travelling football had the most touches for any Celt says to me that there is something seriously awry in our game planning or have the rest of the squad retreated within themselves that they are in hiding from taking any responsibility?
Why do we only have 1 system of play? Surely training and preparation involves multiple formations and scenarios. Remember Rodgers talking of “We take training for 10 vs 11” after Edouard scored the classic 3-2 winner at Ibrox?
How can Lenny say he didnt have time to work on a 4 at the back or a Diamond in the middle ?
Shouldn’t Lenny and his Management Team have his Squad of players pre-prepared for all potential scenarios?
Are we really to believe that International level players cant take instructions over even just 2 days and know their role in any given formation. Isnt that what they actually do on International fixtures?
In respect to players available, did Lenny try to maximise their talents or just crowbar them into a 3-5-2?
Young Welsh did okay at the back but why persist with the 3 centre halves against Morelos as was clearly a waste of time as the 5 in “the middle” shrugged and watched the game pass them by?
Why just send Frimpong and Laxalt up the wings to stand there knowing there was no reasonable amount of cover in behind?
Talking about “standing there”..Olivier Ntcham…anyone else ever seen another player who looked as if he would rather be in his bed?
Talking about wings, what ever happened to overlapping to help the players out on the wings? Frimpong needs space to run into…the boy needs support, not isolation.
What exactly is Callum McGregors role?..Pivot and pass to Duffy or Brown?..why are we wasting this guys talents?
In the middle of the park we knew we needed enthusiasm, drive, dig and a can-do attitude…surely that means subbing on Turnbull if not actually starting in him the first place?
Did Lenny and his Management Team consider the opposition and the fact we could have had Taylor, Duffy, Ajer, Frimpong at the back with Turnbull joining a middle 4 or 5 to just shore us up and look to play Rangers at their own countering game?
Why play Klimala and Mo together? They had no prior experience together and neither knew what the other was doing. In fairness they had next to no supply yet Lennon persisted with the front 2 chasing shadows and having no impact, bar a lofted chance
In respect to players abilities, why cant we make a correct decision, a simple pass, or the reverse, know when not to try a pass that gives away possession or causes a bombscare? Ajer and Duffy were top candidates for this on Saturday but apparent stars of football like Mo were just as bad at giving the ball away, wheres the composure gone?
Whats happened to our movement? Whether its stiff goalkeeper and defenders failing to act or step up at an opponents free kicks, or our static forwards standing with their backs to goal making no runs whatsoever or our midfielders failing to create triangles and pockets, why are we so idle?
Just what is going on at training?
Why are so many players always unfit? Is it simply Law of Averages or are there serious questions about Lennoxtown and the methods practised within?
Why does Lenny seem so alone? Is he playing the Marlene Dietrich role?, Does he like to be on his own to concentrate? Where were his Management Team at the weekend?
Just where has Lennys fire gone to reduce him to a shadow of his former self and indeed his team to look a shadow of themselves?
Im gonna stop now.
We all know there are clearly issues and we all hope we can get it sorted. Either a change in team personnel selection and team set up or ultimately it will require bigger changes if Lenny cant turn this malaise, and it isnt just a current one, around.
Hopefully Lenny can do it and whatever issues behind the scenes or on the training pitch get rectified and we can go back to Positivity CSC once again.