This is the best Celtic team I’ve ever watched.
A big statement. But I genuinely believe it.
I wasn’t born for the Glory Years of the Lions and those teams. I grew up seeing Rangers win leagues; I was 21 before I properly celebrated a title win, in 1998. The great Celtic sides I saw were those built by Martin O’Neill and Gordon Strachan, in particular. They were immense, but this team is better.
For one thing, it plays as a unit. Every player is a grafter.
They work for one another. They work for the manager. They work for the fans and for the club.
Their focus is unbelievable.
I worried when we went out of Europe that some of that would be lost; I need not have been concerned in the slightest.
This team is chasing records and all of them are gettable.
We destroyed Inverness today.
We utterly destroyed them.
They are a side that has traditionally given us a hard time in this tournament and some whispered this might be a banana skin game in spite of their league position, but you would never have known that it was even an issue today. We took them apart, in a rampaging fashion.
Where to even start?
How about with my namesake, who was tremendous? Or Sinclair, who strolled? Kieran who scored and had a great game? Scott Brown, who finished the job? Liam Henderson, who looks like he’s been in this team for years? Or with big Boyata, who kept everything simple?
This is to say nothing of the hat-trick hero. He was magnificent. He just gets better with every game you watch him. That was a stunning display today and he deserves all the plaudits that are most certainly coming his way.
It’s all there for this team right now. The opportunity to go forward and accomplish incredible things is there for these guys and they might never have one like it in their lifetimes. Right now it is difficult to imagine us being stopped, but that attitude is clearly not a prevalent one inside Celtic Park, because this team is working like mad to stop even the appearance of complacency. The players want those records and are determined to achieve their ambitions.
Elsewhere today, chaos reigns. Amidst it, people are kidding themselves that something positive will emerge.
In my article earlier today I dissected the “official version”, which doesn’t stand up to even the most modest scrutiny, but this afternoon I frankly couldn’t care less what they do or who they appoint, because there is no earthly way whoever that is will be able to touch this Celtic team. BBC Scotland suggested that sending us to Ibrox in the next round of the cup might present us with a “challenge”. The idea is frankly hilarious.
Celtic are Scottish football’s hyperpower. There is no prospect of any club catching us far into the future, and I hope Basket Case FC continues to kid itself on that it can, because that road leads to ruination as we’ve already seen.
Talk of the gap no longer seems sufficient to describe the distance between ourselves and others.
It is a gap in the way that the Grand Canyon is.
We’re not in a different league; right now we might as well be in a different sport.
This has already been some season and the spine tingling thing of it is that we’re nowhere near the end yet and the best is still to come.