Maybe it’s the frustration of a long day after a long yesterday after a long month so far after a long first three months getting to me, but I can’t deal with the latest Ivan Toney nonsense with the least equanimity or restraint.
He’s on the latest leg of his self-publicity tour of the English media, and the Scottish press is following it because they know it makes us look bad. I mean, amazing that this should be their motivation, eah?
So with that in mind, I just want to ask a couple of questions.
The first of them is, who really cares anymore?
Toney is not just yesterday’s news, he’s so distant news that we were still the holders of every Scottish domestic trophy when the issue was resolved.
I don’t know why our fans do this to themselves.
This is old ground, and the whole argument over it has been rendered pointless by circumstances.
Secondly, don’t we have bigger things to worry about than this recycled nonsense?
Why are we wasting a second of our time or our trouble or our energy on it?
Even angry about it this isn’t worth more than the ten minutes of my time it takes to have this rant and stick it up online.
It is by far the least consequential thing I’ve written all day and that includes messages to mates and a game review that I stuck up on Steam.
This is a Kit Kat and coffee break piece, written out of frustration.
We whip ourselves over the stupidest things. Toney has done well. Would he have done so well in Scotland, with pressure on his shoulders and expectations on him? We will never know.
And that’s the point; we’ll never know, just as we don’t know whether this was the Lennon veto or the Lawwell veto or some other set of complications. The only questions that matter here are the ones nobody seems to be asking on this pointless rake over the coals.
What have we learned from the fiasco of this season?
I hope, that we cannot continue doing things the way we have been, because the system clearly doesn’t work and it’s only amazing it hasn’t exploded in our faces a lot sooner.
At Celtic Park, someone wanted Toney enough to get him to the training ground.
But someone didn’t want him enough to get the deal over the line.
That’s a club working at cross purposes, where the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing but tries to cut it off the second it finds out. It’s the problem that was apparent in Rodgers’ showdown with Lawwell in the John McGinn window and again that January over Shved.
About Toney himself, I couldn’t care less. He’s not a Celtic player and my concerns are with those who are, and where we might go next as a club. What I’m concerned with is the process, and the total breakdown in the system and that’s where our focus should be.
Because Toney wasn’t the first, and neither was McGinn. Toney wasn’t the last either. We were still messing about in this fashion back in January, over Davies, a fiasco which only deepened the sense of crisis at the time and which, I think, was instrumental in bringing to an end the roles of at least two senior people at Celtic Park.
Toney is a symptom of the problem.
Let’s stop focussing on the symptom and get fully focussed on the problem itself.
Man, oh man, it’s past due.