Brendan Rodgers was pissed off yesterday.
In part he was pissed off at the kind of issues I’ve raised on this site, the constant speculation, the constant swirl of media nonsense linking this player and that player with moves out of the club. He is pissed because he is not allowed continuity. Every time the window opens the same stories circulate.
He is right to be pissed at that. He is right to call the media out on it, on their obsession with trying to drum up stories when there’s nothing to report. No moves have been made for our players. Not one concrete offer has been submitted.
Still the rumour factory churns out its chum. Any manager would be fed up with it.
But where Brendan has no argument, where he has nothing to fall back on, is when he tells the media he does not feel he is under scrutiny.
Because he is under scrutiny and by a constituency far more important, and more relevant to his job than the press pack of liars, stirrers, serial Celtic haters and general halfwits. He’s under scrutiny from the us, from the fans, from the shareholders and season ticket holders and all those who make the club the focus of their daily dreams.
Brendan Rodgers is answerable to the Celtic Family, and we are watching and a lot of folk are not terribly impressed with what we’re seeing in this window. The manager said yesterday he does not believe the central defence is a priority; frankly, that is just not on.
He might well be the last person on the planet who believes what we’ve got right now is good enough.
I understand, in part, why he said that.
If we’re in the market for defenders – and from where I’m sitting we have to be, as I said – and we fail to land the targets we’re after we’re stuck with these guys for the foreseeable future and nothing could dent their already fragile confidence faster than our manager saying they’re not up to snuff or that he’s looking for replacements. But let’s not kid ourselves on here, these guys aren’t stupid and they know their performances, especially in Europe, were just not at the acceptable level.
They see the writing on the wall.
Something was eating Brendan yesterday above and beyond what was going on at the press conference. He looked like a guy who would have rather been anywhere else in the world. There’s already a lot of finger pointing at those behind him at the club; are they dragging their feet? Does Brendan look like a guy who will put up with that?
Do our supporters seem as if we will?
Look, it’s not the job of the Celtic bloggers to spread rumours and lies on behalf of our enemies.
This blog, in particular, stands accused of giving an inordinate amount of scrutiny to the club across the city. Some think we should focus exclusively on goings on within our own walls; I have zero respect for that opinion and I won’t even pretend to. This club has been systematically cheated and lied to and the people who allowed it are still at Hampden and some of those who were on the Rangers board when it was going on are still at Ibrox.
Those who don’t like our scrutiny of that club can jog on.
Sevco, like Rangers before it, is determined to continue defying financial gravity and sporting integrity and as long as they are I’m going to keep on saying it and nobody is going to dissuade me by using a Sevconian word like “obsessed” – a pitiful enough comeback when it comes from their fans, a complete embarrassment when it comes from our own.
But nor is it our job to kiss up to those who work at Celtic Park if they’re not getting the job done, and this is an area I’ll never shirk from exploring. There are a few weeks of this window left – Brendan said yesterday that there was a month; surely I can’t be the first person to point out to him that he’s talking cobblers? There are twelve days to go – and we’re nowhere near where we hoped to be. If someone at Parkhead is dragging their feet, that’s a concern.
I’m not saying that Brendan is pissed off at a perceived lack of progress on the transfer front, but if he is I think it’s worth pointing that the supporters would overwhelmingly support him over those in the boardroom. He’s not a guy who will stick around if he feels undermined or let down by those above him.
He runs the show, and that ought to be crystal clear.
Our club is in a good place, because the fans believe in the direction we’re moving. If there’s a disconnect between what we believe and what’s really going on … who do you reckon will get blamed for that? We’re got some opportunity here … I don’t expect there will be much forgiveness in the air if this is squandered.
Brendan Rodgers was wrong yesterday when he said he’s not under scrutiny; he is and he always will be as long as he’s at Celtic. The one consolation he should take from this is that he’s not alone. He’s not the only person at the club we have our eyes on.
Others already know that, but it doesn’t hurt to remind them.