At last. It took two days longer than it should have, but Celtic has finally come out swinging.
When you are on the ropes and you are getting the ever-loving Hell punched out of you, what choice do you have?
After Ryan Christie was cited for an alleged grab at Morelos’ private parts, I guess some people woke up to how bad this was getting and took the gloves off.
In a multifaceted statement the club decried the decision to cite Christie, condemned the behaviour of the Sevco support – everything from the vile songbook to actually hurling objects at the Celtic fans – and promised to deal with a number of issues that have been raised “vigorously.”
The statement does not mention Morelos or Kent, although neither has yet been cited by the SFA for their own conduct during the match.
We’re in a mudslinging contest now, and you know what?
That’s alright with me.
Two of the tabloids are running a story about a Sevco fan who was allegedly struck with a coin thrown by Celtic fans, and so it’s clear that the public beating on our club was, and is, going to continue for many more days to come.
We were in the corner, getting a kicking and if by going on the offensive we declare the proverbial “plague on both our houses” then so be it.
It’s better than cowering in a ball on the deck and inviting the kicks.
Sevco won this game, don’t forget. Their conduct both in the immediate aftermath of the game and since demonstrates clearly that this is a club that can’t even win with dignity. The idea that their supporters were victimised on Sunday is as risible as the notion that Morelos is. That fan-base carries its bile, its sectarianism, its neddishness everywhere it goes … and the club facilitates it with their own deplorable press releases and their defence of the indefensible.
If Celtic supporters were involved in either racist or hooligan behaviour then I want them caught, prosecuted and jailed where appropriate. I don’t want anyone like that in our stadium. But more than that, I’m just pig sick of this whole sordid fixture which the media hysterically hypes just so the hacks can cluck their tongues when the inevitable happens.
Indeed, with so much off-field mayhem apparently surrounding this one and rumours of much worse behind the scenes Morelos and Kent’s gestures towards our support are all the more unsavoury and even more dangerous.
I find the media’s refusal to engage properly with those incidents one of the more disturbing things about this particular series of events.
I can only imagine the reaction had Celtic players done that. Can you even wrap your brain around the explosion of outrage had it been Scott Brown? It barely needs pointing out that there would have been demands for a criminal investigation and the longest ban ever handed out by the governing body. Two gestures, either of which could have sparked trouble, have instead been utterly ignored by just about the whole of the press corps, a small handful aside.
The potential seriousness of those incidents appears not to concern the same newspapers which want to see our club in the dock. Our club’s own response to all of this has been pathetic; even today’s statement was not put up on the club website where it would have carried more weight.
Instead it was a press release which the media can edit and spin as they see fit, and many of them will do exactly that, with The Scotsman choosing to focus on the part of it concerning Christie and The Record opting to ignore that part completely.
There are times when we get what we deserve.
I am just so sick of our association with this hateful fixture, which in many ways is even more toxic and virulent than the one the media seems determined to pretend it’s a continuation of. I really would be happier if we never had to face them again. Scotland would be better off too.
What a depressing way to close out this site for the New Year.
On that note, I want to say a heartfelt thank you to every single one of you who shared, liked, commented on or discussed one of our articles this year.
I want to thank every person who wrote a piece for us too.
As much as anything though, I want to thank the amazing team of moderators on the CelticBlog Facebook group, who put up with more nonsense and stick and garbage than you’d believe and who I couldn’t do this stuff without.
Love and respect to the whole team.
And love and respect too to you and yours, friends in Celtic.
It’s not the end we wanted to one of the finest decades in the history of our club but I’m still drinking tonight to the triumphant nature of that decade and looking forward to avenging that defeat when the football starts back again.
I wish I wasn’t writing these kind of articles at the close of it, but I have no doubt that if we act as only Celtic can that we’ll write a happy ending.
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