On the day we secured a place in the Third Champions League Qualifier, the Daily Record ran an article which wrote up our opponents in glowing terms.
Shortly after that, they published a piece featuring the Cluj manager, Dan Petrescu, where he said he was confident he would beat us.
Then they detailed the club’s injury crisis, as though they were the Scottish club and they had to prepare the foundations for excuses and exculpations should the opposition prevail.
Following that, they whined and wailed on the Romanian club’s behalf because UEFA punished them for not following Financial Fair Play rules.
Whilst it is no surprise to learn that our media isn’t terribly concerned about clubs who violate football regulations, it is still pretty shocking to see our press throw a pity party in advance for a team the champions of Scotland are about to play.
And today, of course, they have gone out and found the obligatory ex-Rangers player – a must whenever Celtic are playing in Europe – to offer insight and understanding as to why we’re going to lose. Coming just a day after we swept aside St Johnstone 7-0, playing some of the finest football we have in a while, Dorian Goian called us a “long ball team”; this is clearly someone who hasn’t watched Scottish football in a long time.
It begs the question; why is The Daily Record in the business of promoting our opponents?
I know we’re not the core audience, but our team doing well in Europe represents the only chance the paper’s favourite club has of ever hearing the Champions League anthem again; without Scotland having two representatives in the that tournament they can forget it.
The Record appears not to care about this.
We are in Romania in midweek and I know more about our opponents than I do about any side I’ve seen the Ibrox club play in Europe in the last two seasons.
The English media never does this to its teams.
The Scottish media never does it to any other team.
This is the treatment we’ve come to expect.