I understand the sentiments of those who say they will enjoy our six in a row triumph whenever, and however, it comes. I get it. There have been titles where I would have celebrated had we secured them at 4:00 am on a wet Wednesday morning. I honestly would not have cared how it was finally done. I don’t particularly care how this one is secured, but I have a preference and that would be for us to win it ourselves, with a win on Sunday.
This season has been incredible.
This season has earned a storming Celtic win to close off the race for this latest flag, this milestone towards an even greater one.
This season has earned a big game where it’s on the line, where it’s in our hands, where we can do it on our own terms.
A league title should be won on the park, not on the telly.
I feel as if it will fall flat if it’s decided on a Friday evening without us even kicking a ball.
Somehow it just won’t feel right.
This has happened before of course, and in some cases that would have been pretty infuriating for the teams involved. Derby County are the most famous example I can think of; Clough’s title winning side there won the title whilst most of the players were in Mallorca and the great manager himself was on holiday with his family elsewhere. I can’t imagine that. although the man himself says everyone involved thoroughly enjoyed it regardless.
It happened to us just two years ago of course, when we won the title on Sunday 02 May after Aberdeen had lost to Dundee United following our own 5-0 win against Dundee the day before.
Ronny Deila was in Norway for a family event, but he posted a warm message to the Celtic fans shortly after the game. Yes, all that result did was delay the inevitable – we went to Pittodrie on 10 May and beat them 1-0 – but it was still a kind of flat occasion for us all, especially as ridiculous SPL rules didn’t even let us collect the trophy that day in Aberdeen but made us wait a full 22 days, until 24 May at home against Inverness.
It might feel good, but it never really feels … right.
This is why I’ll be cheering on Aberdeen this evening, and hoping they can get three points. I want our club to win it at Tynecastle on Sunday; it’s not the ideal place, I get that, and would have preferred it to be done at Celtic Park in front of a full home crowd – the fans deserve it as much as the players do – but aside from it being flat otherwise, it will also give the media an excuse to write more absolutely negative nonsense about the season.
This has been a momentous campaign, and we might still end it unbeaten. A campaign that good deserves a capping moment and although Tynecastle wouldn’t have been the place I’d have chosen to secure it, it’s what circumstances have given us.
I’m not at the point – and I’ll never get to the point – where I am inured to Celtic title wins enough to want to be choosy or picky about how and when they are won. I grew up watching another team win nine titles in a row; winning leagues never gets old and it will never get boring and nor will it ever be “just another day” to me.
We’ve all been through enough pain to know that, and Black Sunday still ranks as the worst day I’ve ever had on the planet save for the loss of loved ones, and nothing comes remotely close to it. If it comes tonight I’ll knock back some Jack Daniels and be happy. There are plenty of people out there who will dismiss this achievement as meaningless either way, but in spite of it helping their own team they’ll spend the night in a state of high irritation without even knowing why.
I’ll spare them a thought, but I won’t be thinking about them.