A week on from Celtic’s Champions League failure, and a few days since the slender extra time win over Dunfermline in the League Cup, the focus now turns to the Europa League. Thursday marks a final throw of the dice for Neil Lennon to secure European football until Christmas.
It’s been a helluva week with blame thrown around the Celtic community like a shitty stick. Fans, pundits, media and ex-players wading in from all angles on topics from transfers to tactics.
Even Tom Boyd has managed to become the subject of an inquiry following his comments live on Celtic TV regarding SFA official, John Beaton. We’ve yet to hear the outcome about that, but it is yet another negative storyline for the club to deal with.
If you are a Celtic supporter then you are no doubt feeling as though the wheels have come off. 10INAROW has been on the lips of the Celtic support for a long time, but right now people are more concerned about 9INAROW being in jepoardy.
There’s a lot of things going on at the club though not necessarily as quickly as we’d like to see. Despite that, Celtic have been active.
The club in general are getting stick from supporters for the lack of horizon scanning. I hate to use phrases straight out of the business handbook, but given that Celtic pride themselves as having a good financial business model, it seems apt to use a business term to describe how other areas of our business have been mismanaged or neglected by those ever present at the club.
Whatever stage of progress we are at right now under Neil Lennon, it seems we will have to be patient and wait to see how the recovery from this recent spate of disappointment pans out. Recruitment is said to be undergoing a rebuild even though it should have been ready to go before the end of last season.
That issue aside, Celtic have signed three defenders. An area that required some surgery with the departure of seven defenders.
Two of these three signings already have many questioning their abilities whilst some have suggested that neither were bought by Neil Lennon. Time will tell whether these players add any value to the team other than financial.
The club have also signed a handful of youngsters to compliment the youth contingent at the club. We won’t know how big an impact that will have until we’re further down the line.
Likewise, everyone working behind the scenes as well as on the park can only be judged once the season is over or we’re out of a competition. We’re all severely disappointed about last week’s defeat, but we must now allow everyone involved to repair the damage as best as possible.
The Cluj defeat was a major disappointment. The narrow extra time win over Dunfermline was a sign that we were still suffering.
The Europa League may not carry the same buzz as the Champions League, but it’s still a tough European competition. We need this tournament if not for the smaller amount of income, then for the midweek winter nights at the very least.
We’ve dissected the club’s failings for the last week or so be it the players, the manager, our CEO or even the SFA and their officials. Now everyone has to pull together and the hard work starts again tomorrow against AIK.
It’s another home fixture for Celtic and it will be followed by another one on Sunday against Hearts. The return leg against AIK will take place a week on Thursday in Stockholm and then it’s off to Ibrox a week on Sunday.
Four tough games ahead so now is the time for everyone to repsond and pull together. Fans, players, coachimg staff and the club as a whole.
We’re pulling ourselves apart and it is unhealthy. We can keep on levelling blame, but it won’t help our cause.
It is absolutely correct to question those responsible when the proverbial hits the fan, but we must allow the club to put things right. Stay in Europe, stay in the cups and keep blazing a trail in the league.
Our season is not over. It is hopefully just beginning.