Well today was more difficult than it might have been, and more difficult than it should have been. Aberdeen came to frustrate, and they did just that. But you know what’s more apparent? We’re busy frustrating ourselves at the moment.
The team is playing with none of the zip and confidence, the zing, of previous months. A few of the players badly need some downtime.
The next game is not until Thursday; I would have preferred a nice, simple, home tie rather than an away trip to a scrappy team like St Mirren, but we’ll take what we can get. We’ve restored the five-point lead. The chance remains to win on 29 December and make it eight.
That’s something to be thinking about anyway.
The team just looks wrong right now; I think it’s probably the fact that so many players have been moved about the pitch. Forrest and Christie look miscast, with James on the left and Ryan on the right instead of being played through the middle; we lost the potency of each.
Ollie is a good option in the middle of the pitch, especially in these games where you have to fight. But to include him means to move two of our best attacking players outside of their best areas, and that has blunted our attacking threat somewhat.
On top of that, some of the guys just looked tired and I can understand exactly why. We have played so many games in the last two months that it’s been ridiculous and on top of this we had international games during times when the players would have wanted a break … there are guys here who almost never get a full week off of playing football.
There are two games to go before they do, before they get a break which they badly need. What great form we in. The performances might not be as neat and sexy as they were, but we keep on getting the wins. We keep on putting the points on the board.
The importance of that cannot be underestimated.
Today belonged to Eddie, who got the winner and looks like he’s finding his feet again. Perfect timing. The St Mirren game will be followed up by Sevco’s visit to Parkhead and I don’t think they can touch him when he’s on form. He will be raring to go.
One other note of interest; Sam Cosgrove scored against us today. Again.
He also stupidly got himself sent off.
This guy has a quick temper and his tackle on Ajer was frankly disgraceful … but he is prone to rashness.
I try to look past it to see what else he has … and I wonder if he can be tamed.
He has some of Morelos’ problems with temperament … but he scores big goals in big games and I think he’s a footballer worth watching. If we need a big target man who gives us options on a day when we have to mix it up a little, he should be in the frame.
The red card was deserved. Ryan Christie’s booking was a shocker. And we were denied what I thought was a stonewall penalty to go with it. These kinds of decisions can have big impacts on tough afternoons. This was a dire display from the ref.
In the end it didn’t matter, but Neil Lennon will be well entitled to say his piece on some of the decisions. He’s also entitled to be well satisfied with the way this month has gone so far. We’re heading for the finish line now. Two games left to go.
Remember, you can still do our Slapping Sevco quiz at the link below … just answer the first question about who scored our first goal against the NewCo …