Well, is there any more doubt at all that our January signings were far better than those from elsewhere?
Once again, Oliver Burke shows his class.
Once again Timothy Weah dazzles with some fancy footwork.
But to me, it was Toljan who stole the show, even from Scott Sinclair, who was unplayable today and deserved his hat-trick.
Before I go on, a tribute to one other player; the magnificent Scott Brown.
He hasn’t scored in years but what a peach of a goal to re-establish himself as the pre-eminent midfielder in Scottish football. Let the cynics and the doubters eat their words, because nobody is better than him in that role he plays. Nobody. The man is a marvel.
Today was all about us, as a team. We’ve come out of the January hiatus looking well and truly in the mood. Already the media has started trying to pick holes in the performances and in the form, implying that we’ve had easy games so far. They can say whatever they like; this is a team that is scoring goals and having fun and looking like the players are enjoying it.
The new boys have injected pace and intensity into this team. And they have made the players around them play better. Nobody is guaranteed a place in this Celtic line-up any longer, and that has given the guys who were here already a real jolt.
Sinclair hasn’t been this good since he was signed, and that’s down to Burke not only teaming up brilliantly with him but challenging him for a place in this team. Forrest played today like he knew he had something to prove as well, and he does because his place is no longer as secure as it once was either. The fire is back in the bellies of these footballers.
That performance today was exceptional. We moved the ball brilliantly, we cut them apart at will. We could have scored more. We fear no-one at home, and frankly I can’t see anyone stopping us there. On top of that, we’ve now gone 24 cup games unbeaten under the manager.
Part of the performance today was down to Jeremy Toljan, who I thought was exceptional. He strolled through that, and his nice touches and his attacking pace added to the arsenal up front. But this guy can also defend, and that’s what we needed most.
He is going to be huge for us in what is left of the campaign.
We have one player left to see, of course, and I think Bayo can consider himself unlucky that so many are on form in front of him. It’s a huge boost to us and a credit to the rest that a £2 million January signing can’t even get onto the bench today. That should scare people at other clubs and it ought to serve as a reminder of who the strongest club in the country is.
A lot of hype surrounded certain other players at other clubs; I watched one of them yesterday and aside from a pathetic and failed attempt to win a penalty kick he was virtually anonymous. Their other “blue chip” signing was on the bench, having already fallen out of the team.
It is already obvious who did the better business. It is already obvious that our signings were the more well thought through and the more substantial. The decisions made in the last window will stand us good come the summer.
Those made elsewhere will be haunting them long after this particular campaign has ended.
We’re now in the quarter finals … bring on the Killie!
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