Posted on Thursday, 16th June 2011 by lordofthewing
When I’m putting on my football bets either at home or in the breezeblock jowl that is the concourse of Celtic Park; the click of the mouse or the stroke of those miniscule red pens – that you have hundreds off in your home, car and washing machine – that signals that I fancy Paddy McCourt as last goalscorer is not a bet born from romance.
Romantic betting is a mugs game and one sure fire way of losing money. I’m in no way a romantic as Mrs LoTW will attest. The bet is made with educated guess-work.
I truly believe that Paddy McCourt will come on and has a decent chance to influence the game. The bet came in a few times this season. It never justified the outlay – or ended up ensuring that my last scorer / scorecast double ship came in – but it was enough for me.
The fact that I only thought Paddy would come off the bench confirms the problem Paddy and Celtic have.
He either appears as the Jester to entertain the masses when we are cruising or what always seems as a desperate gamble when we are struggling to breakdown packed defences, which sometimes leads to embarrassing tumbles as seen at Inverness and the Diddy Cup Final.
Off course sometimes it works. His play set up late winners at Tannadice and St Midden proving a worth in this tactic.
His early season starts and show as the in the hole striker at Ipox in January should also dispel that he is just a bit-part squad player who has a bit of maverick genius in him. It doesn’t though.
While I believe Paddy can do something credible everytime he pulls on his plain Addidas – another reason to love him, no coloured boots – I get the impression that Paddy doesn’t.
At his best his ability seems nonchalant, wistful and as natural as a salmon following it’s biology back to it’s spawning place (dodging numerous bears on the way). He is the bloke who used to sit at the end of the bar in your local and every year would turn out for the pub team once or twice to produce a man of the match performance after borrowing someone’s boots (usually two sizes too small for him).
At worst his style could be seen as arrogance. That sometimes he can’t be bothered. I would argue that is not the case. His tribulations in getting fit and into the squad are testament to a player that wants to improve his all round game.
We all love the image that McCourt is a 40 Lambert and Butler a day, Guinness swilling eccentric with craic straight from the blarney and ability from Rio via Derry. His unkempt look adds to the love.
This image adds to the cult status and the myth of his overall ability. I must admit I fully embrace the McCourt fantasy. I don’t need a £50 an hour therapist for me to admit that failing.
But, Commons has stolen his thunder. Forrest and Maloney have all been seen as safer forward options. Scott Brown and Joe Ledley have also been favoured in wide positions ahead of him.
He’s reached a moment of truth.
Does he hang around being a bit part adding 4 or 5 iconic DVD moments to enhance his already legendary cult status at a club his talents deserve to be at every season or take his talents elsewhere to a lesser light and probably still produce 4 or 5 iconic DVD moments to further enhance his cult status but play every week.
Paddy McCourt of Kilmarnock / Motherwell / Aberdeen / Blackpool / Doncaster sounds like being locked in a room with the soundtrack to Mama Mia being on constant repeat with only a dentist drill for company.
For the good of McCourt , for the good of the game and for all that love the game we can’t hold him back. That sound has to become a reality. Think of the children for gods sake.
Previously On The Celtic Blog (Click On The Pictures For Untold Delights)