Today Dundee Utd and a lower league NewCo booked their places in the Scottish Cup semi-final.
Tomorrow, Ronny Deila’s side has to do the same, or it’s curtains and he won’t see the end of the season in the manager’s job.
And I’ll go you one better; he needs to win the semi-final which comes after it, no matter the adversary, no matter what indignities we suffer in the game itself. Play 89 of the 90 minutes with nine men on the park? Well, hard lines. Win, or pack your stuff Ronny.
Unfair? Maybe so, and I’ll agree that no other manager in our history has ever had to guarantee a double just to get through the season, but you know what? It’s a hard old world and it’s about to get a lot harder.
The margin for error is zero. Nothing less will do.
For all the anger this week, he’ll take us into the game tomorrow and if he sees it through I fully expect him to be sitting in the dugout on the day we go to Hampden for the semi-final.
When the club took the decision to let the January window come and go with Ronny Deila at the helm they bet big on the treble – don’t let anyone kid you on that it was shooting for the moon; in the aftermath of our European exit it was the fig leaf everyone still supporting the manager was standing behind.
That’s over now. Woe betide our decision makers if their gamble results in no Scottish Cup. I’ve long argued that if Ronny’s head is the only one to roll at the end of this season that it’ll be a travesty.
If the major domestic trophy is resting elsewhere in May then the logic of the position will be inescapable and others will have to follow him out the door.
Pressure on the team? Too bad.
They are big boys, or they should be.
If they aren’t up to this job then they shouldn’t be wearing the famous green and white hoops in the first place.
Their task is to go out there tomorrow and hammer Morton and set a marker for what’s left of this dismal, awful season.
They won’t save the manager – his fate is already all but sealed because no-one can conceive of us navigating Champions League qualifiers whilst he’s at the helm – but they can send him to his next job with a decent looking CV.
Today Patrick Roberts is telling everyone that the team will “ease the fans” frustrations against Morton tomorrow; not for the first time, I wonder just what in Hell is going on at Celtic Park when our players are allowed to talk big for the cameras instead of on the park? And why the Hell is a kid who’s on loan and has started just one game speaking for the rest of the playing squad prior to this one anyway?
Where are the rest of them? In hiding?
Tomorrow is a huge day for our club.
That it’s become fraught with such emotions is testament to how things stand at Celtic Park at the moment; not in a million years should a game against a Championship team occasion such feelings of creeping dread.
Neil Lennon survived Clyde, but that was a different scenario entirely and if our club’s name isn’t in the hat for the draw after the game tomorrow then that’s all she wrote; the inquests won’t wait, and the notion of letting Deila and the management team take us through the final stages of the league campaign will be an argument fit only for lunatics or the suicidally brave.
Winning tomorrow is a must, and winning the cup outright is too.
That ought to be simply non-negotiable.