Last week or the week before, I said on this site that there was no prospect of a league decider at Celtic Park featuring ourselves and Sevco. It didn’t take long for the press to twig to the fact that Sevco’s collapse and Aberdeen’s inconsistency made it a possibility. They know now that if the Dons drop anything against Hearts at the weekend that it’s game on provided we win our two matches before the split. They don’t want to see it.
Remember, a few years back, when they were telling us that the Celtic – Sevco game was everything? That it was Scottish football at its best? Didn’t take long for that to fizzle out, did it? When one side wins with the consistency of Anthony Joshua and the other flails desperately like Eddie the Eagle Edwards there’s not much point in pushing it as a contest.
As a spectacle it can occasionally provide thrills; the game at Ibrox was, if you believe all the after-match hype, a “great advert for the Scottish game.” It was a great advert for Celtic anyway, our French Connection combining sublimely to pull us back from being a goal down twice and a man down for much of the second half. I’m not sure Scottish football as a whole drew any great benefit from it; people looked at our hapless opponents and wondered “if they can’t win this time when exactly will we see this fabled challenge emerge”?
That has an easy answer; don’t anybody be waiting with baited breath.
With the game no longer a contest, you wait and see how quickly the media decides the spectacle is no longer enough. There is no way that this game will be allowed to be a league decider, not at Celtic Park, not in the current climate of fear and loathing at Ibrox. The media will not be clamouring to make this a showpiece. Suddenly the so-called biggest game in the country is inconvenient. Suddenly it is causing “headaches” at the SPFL. Suddenly it’s a “nightmare.”
Imagine the shoe was on the other foot; would we be hearing nonsense like this? I think not.
What makes it worse for the Sevconuts, of course, is that we’re not even their only problem right now; that would be Aberdeen and Hibs. Imagine them coming to Celtic Park, losing heavily, seeing us win the title, and finishing the day in fourth place?
That’s the nightmare scenario for the media and the SPFL alright and that’s why The Record was leading off with “panic in the halls” this morning … the clamour to ensure there’s no league decider against Sevco has started already and there is zero chance that their game will be the first after the split, unless us clinching the title that day is impossible.
You can also follow us on Twitter at @The_Celtic_Blog