Hot on the heels of last nights shocking display in Gibraltar, the worst individual competitive result in the entire history of Celtic, Brendan Rodgers told the press he didn’t see it as an embarrassing one. Today he’s been even more blasé about it whilst talking to TalkSport and other outlets.
His attitude scares me and when he snaps out of whatever mental place he’s drifted into those comments ought to scare him too. He appears to have no idea whatsoever of the gravity of the situation he and the club are in right now. He appears absolutely unconcerned.
That makes me more worried than anything Ronny Deila ever did.
In the aftermath of that result last night, what we needed to see and hear was someone who understood it, who got the size of it, who was as shocked as we were and who articulated those feelings on our behalf and made it abundantly clear that what we witnessed was not just unacceptable but that repeat performances were unthinkable.
Instead, this morning he spoke about how “results like these happen.” As if it’s nothing. As if it’s just one of those things. No, no, no, no.
I repeat; that is the worst individual result in the history of our club, which goes back 128 years. That result disgraces every one of those years, our proud name, and that history.
Neither Brendan Rodgers nor those players last night better be under the slightest illusions about where it stands; they are now a page in that history for all the wrong reasons. They shamed themselves last night, each and every one of them, and him too.
This morning every media outlet in the nation is howling the same words at him; embarrassing, humiliating, scandalous, appalling, unacceptable … and this is definitely one of those “broken clock” days when the media is simply telling the pure and simple truth.
It is not they who have put this team and this manager under the most immense pressure; the team and the manager did this to themselves, and Brendan Rodgers compounds it every time he opens his mouth and makes it clear that the magnitude of this is just not being properly processed or understood.
He owes our supporters, our club, an apology for what we saw last night.
Every single person who played a part in it does.
Furthermore, over the next few days it is a virtual certainty that at least one player will creep in front of the media and express his own remorse or guilt or shame (doubtless which still collecting his wages) and he will call this result what it is, and then we’ll have to endure a torrent of stories about why the manager is less concerned than those in his charge and we’ll be off to the races with a fresh round of tales on dressing room splits.
This is self-inflicting, and a sign of just how little we ever bloody well learn.
What we saw last night is owned by those who were there and played a part in it. They’ll have to live with it, and they should be under no illusions about that result being swiftly forgotten. Some of them ought never to pull on a Celtic shirt again and Rodgers will be courting dire consequences if he continues to select them.
Last night was not a “disaster.” Celtic is not “in crisis.”
But there are signs that we are heading for one, if people inside the club do not engage fully with the immensity of what we witnessed last night. If this isn’t the wake up call to end them all then we’re sleepingwalking to the cliff face. There are people inside of Celtic Park who should have left with Ronny Deila; in the days after Brendan Rodgers was appointed most of the bloggers refrained from writing the articles that made clear just how necessary that was; I guess we figured the club was due a period of calm and a little feel-good.
Well that’s over with. Their reckoning is long overdue and if they don’t deliver in the transfer market when the need for it stands out a mile that reckoning is going to swiftly come.
But the ultimate failure is Rodgers’ and that of the team last night, and however he tries to rationalise it and make light of it this what we witnessed was simply not on.
His own mistakes were clear and will be talked about for years. This is how his term as manager begins, and the only way he can even start to get out of the quagmire is to acknowledge precisely where we are and grasp for himself the enormity of that defeat and what it portends.
His failure on that score is somehow worse than those on the pitch.
Whether he’s living in denial, trying to protect the players who couldn’t be arsed and lumped him with this historic, unprecedented failure, or whether he genuinely just doesn’t understand it at all, his comments in the aftermath of that result are damning and frightening and have erased the feel-good factor in a single night.
And he better – and others better – understand the gravity of that.