Celtic was a club founded on charity. That doesn’t mean that we always have to be charitable.
Yet when I heard that Aberdeen were going to have to face us with no fewer than eight first team players out, my first thought was about how unfair it was and whether or not we should offer to postpone the match.
Impossible, I know, but the thought surfaced.
Then, just as suddenly as it came up, something dawned on me; back when Celtic had not eight players but a full eleven out with injury a couple of seasons ago, nobody felt in the least bit sorry for us or made any such offer. We had to get on with it.
And that decided me on this matter and what I would write today even before I heard that a number of Aberdeen players had decided to go nightclubbing in the middle of a global pandemic. To call it stupid would insult stupid people.
Today, the SPFL has called off Aberdeen’s game, scheduled for this weekend.
Celtic’s match next weekend is certainly in the crosshairs. We have to resist that move, unless there is a clear-cut safety issue surrounding the fixture.
Reports today suggest that the Celtic game is not presently threatend … and nor should it be.
Moonhowlers and conspiracy theorists will have a field day … but they don’t need encouragement to squeal and bang on the padded walls.
It’s clear from yesterday’s news that something went badly wrong at Aberdeen.
Perhaps it offers us at least a partial explanation for the toothless, gutless performance against the Ibrox side at the weekend past. They certainly looked like a team who had one eye on the pub, or were going through the motions with a hangover.
The news that they were out on the lash displays a lack of discipline which would have had a junior manager booting backsides all over the place.
Any residual sympathy I had for them went the second I heard that.
Aberdeen’s management team have clearly failed to give these players the best guidance they can. Hey, either that or the management team up there is so weak the players paid not one blind bit of notice to what they were told, believing they could get away with it.
Either way, this should not have the slightest impact on other clubs, clubs who have followed the proper procedures and who’s players have acted responsibly. Celtic certainly cannot afford a fixture postponement this early, because our season is going to be crammed full of games as it is.
Unless the SPFL gives us a reason other than that Aberdeen will be disadvantaged we should be pressing ahead and preparing for the game.
Under no circumstances should we simply roll over and accept a call-off.
There is a suggestion that the government has enforced this; if true, the SFA and the SPFL should be raising ninety-nine kinds of Hell over it or should have point blank refused to cancel the fixture on anything other than public health grounds.
This is a shambles, but it’s a shambles entirely Made In Aberdeen.
They, and they alone, should have paid the price for it.
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