First of all, I hope you and your families all had a very Merry Christmas. This time of the year is really special.
And since we’re talking about special. as we all know, a week past Sunday, Celtic’s own special record of 69 domestic games undefeated, came to an end at a slippery Tynecastle against Hearts.
It was bound to happen sometime, but I think the manner of the defeat, four goals to nil, took us all by surprise. For a start, it was the first time Celtic under manager Brendan Rodgers had failed to score in game on on Scottish soil, and for the first time, so many of the Bhoys all underperfomed on the same day.
As expected, the media fallout was just as spectacular as the loss. It was like an early Christmas present for them, particularly those in the SMSM of a blue persuasion, of which there are plenty!
In their feeding frenzy, they absolutely slaughtered our defence, with Dedryck Boyata and Jozo Simunovic coming in for most criticism. While their performances that day left a lot to be desired, both were all over the place, what was conveniently forgotten was the statistic that they were still part of the defence who conceded least goals in the league.
They also overlooked the fact that despite the defeat, Celtic were still top of the league by two points, with a game in hand against Partick Thistle to play on the following Wednesday. And it’s fair to say in their quest for sensationalism, they ignored the fallout would only serve to refocus the Champions, something Brendan told them in the post match presser.
When your manager is also a fan, you know there will be a reaction. He hurts as much as we do.
A target of four wins out of four would be set by the gaffer, starting with Partick Thistle at Celtic Park on the Wednesday, followed by our nearest rivals Aberdeen on Saturday, with a trip to Dundee to take on The Dee on Boxing Day. Our last challenge of the four would be a home game against the new club, so many of the headline writers drool over, on the 30th of this month.
Thus far, Celtic have won all three games played since the Tynecastle game, scoring seven goals WITHOUT RETURN! Yip, the shambles of a defence so many criticised a week and a half ago, have not conceded in 270 minutes of league football, including a game against the second placed club, and a tricky away fixture at Dundee, who only a few weeks ago beat the aformentioned new club.
But have Celtic received the same praise for their response to losing our unbeaten record?
Not a chance, the silence of the SMSM tells us they’re not happy that Brendan and the Bhoys have returned to winning ways, especially with their favourites next in line…..