Even as the Ibrox fans still reel from the Steven Gerrard defection, Brendan Rodgers went on TV and pledged his allegiance to Leicester City. Celtic fans rolled their eyes. We’ve heard all this before from this guy, because he said it all about us too.
Gerrard said much the same to the supporters across the city, and they were equally shocked when he turned out to be full of it. Their new boss has already said that he wants to manage down south, so the clock is already ticking on him before he really starts.
Celtic fans have seen and heard enough of this kind of badge-kissing nonsense to last a lifetime. We accept that there is no true loyalty in the game. Even Ange will leave us if the right offer comes along because everyone wants to manage in England although there is ample evidence that for a lot of managers it only really enhances their bank balance.
The thing with Ange is that he won’t waste any of our time with any of the fakery if the moment ever comes. He wouldn’t sneak out the back door either; that man would give us the respect of levelling with us, and I doubt he would leave midway through a campaign. He has too much respect for other people to indulge in what Rodgers does or what Gerrard has done.
Neither of those men would has a scintilla of loyalty, but it’s their almost casual dismissal of Scottish football which is most appalling, although our former manager has a better record to fall back on when it comes to the excuse that he had just outgrown the place.
Gerrard won a single title under weird circumstances and was a major flop in the cup competitions; Rodgers won every single trophy he competed for up here so if he thinks he’s too good for this place you can maybe see why he might think so.
But these two think they are too good for the clubs they are at as well. Leicester fans ought not to believe a word that comes out of Rodgers mouth. Gerrard’s contention that he has arrived right where he wants to be is so obviously pure bullshit that the press corps should have been laughing as the words were coming out of his mouth.
There is not a soul in Britain who doesn’t know that if the Anfield job became available tomorrow his lawyers would be exploring every possible way of getting out of his current contract before he’s even fully unpacked his pencils. Likewise, with Rodgers and Manchester United, a job that I don’t believe for one second that he would turn down.
His ego and that club were made for one another. He wouldn’t look back if it was available and on offer to him. But this is what that league has done to people. It has erased the old certainties and the old loyalties. Life is much simpler up here, but ridiculously complicated too by the fact that we know so many of our major figures want to be there.
There might be a change in the weather eventually, if TV deals collapse, if the well runs dry, if major investment into that league prevents clubs from spending fortunes they never had before … it would take a dramatic re-alignment of football to make it happen.
In the meantime, we shouldn’t trust any of these EPL-centric egomaniacs. They don’t care about us and they view the Scottish game with contempt. The worst thing is that they think of the fans of their current clubs the same way.
But at least that’s not our problem anymore.