Astana’s Griffiths Accusations Are Rich From A Team That Kicked Us All Over The Park

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One of the subjects I didn’t bother to cover, overmuch, last night was the dreadful refereeing performance which saw our players get effectively kicked from one end of the pitch to the other. Singled out for special treatment was Patrick Roberts, whose dancing feet were a clear danger to the opposition right from the start.

But running second was Leigh Griffiths himself.

These people have some brass neck to be complaining about an incident which may or may not have occurred as they say it did; the TV footage is pretty inconclusive. What is conclusive is that Roberts, Griffiths and other Celtic players were subject to the most vicious rough housing all night long and that the referee – an Italian, who’s conduct in one particular game is, apparently, famous in his own country – allowed it to go on and on.

The ref, incidentally, booked Griffiths for whatever happened which completely rules out any retroactive action, much to the clear annoyance of the Scottish hacks who have rushed to point out Astana’s tweet and give credence to their bizarre claims. The press here really is remarkable. I harboured no illusions about them actually supporting us, not even for the good of Scottish football and the co-efficient, but this is really bottom of the barrel stuff from them today.

They ought to stick to writing guff about Sevco trying to sign Robin Van Persie and other such nonsense. This one ain’t gonna fly.

Astana, like a lot of other teams, did a lot of talking before the game and are doing a lot of talking after it. Leigh responded to their treatment last night the way he’s responded to the internet trolling and abuse he’s had over months … he stuck the ball in the back of the net. Astana’s players are, naturally, bitter that we weren’t quite the pushovers some of their countrymen (and some of our own) said we’d be.

This sounds a lot like bitter wailing.

Of course, there’s a second leg to come here. Brendan has focussed the players on that, and no-one at Celtic is under any illusions about it being job done yet.

Celtic Park on a Champions League night, with Brendan Rodgers in the dugout, is not going to be for the faint hearted though and I do believe we’ll sweep this lot away if we turn up for business in the right frame of mind.

Some of their people clearly sense that, which is why they’re trying to make something of this absolute nothing incident.

The brass neck it takes to complain about one moment in the game though, when they set out their stall to kick everything in a Celtic strip from first minute to last … well that really is quite incredible.

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