Much has been said about the performances last night of the new players; none impressed more than Reo Hatate, who on his debut won the man of the match award and even garnered comparisons – by no less than Chick Young – to the great Nakamura.
Celtic fans have been effusive in their praise.
The blogs are giving it big licks on how superb he was. Ange professes not to be in the least bit surprised. He knew what he was buying after all, having seen the guy up close. There was never a doubt in his mind.
Back in the sands of time, I saw the media scorn another guy a manager had brought in because he knew his qualities beforehand.
But had there been a worldwide web no-one over here would have been surprised by the genius of Lubo Moravcik. It was known to people all across football, just nobody in Scotland, and none of our esteemed hacks were willing to do any research.
In some ways, their job is easier than it’s ever been.
All that information is available to them now. Which makes those who do fall asleep at the wheel ever more impossible to defend, because what else is it than a simple unwillingness to learn an inconvenient truth?
In this case, we’re talking about village idiot reject Alex Rae, who famously ranted about Hatate on the radio just a few weeks ago. He publicly disdained his “versatility”.
He was almost sniggering as he talked about a player who doesn’t fit naturally into one slot on the pitch.
Ange himself said that Hatate is predominantly a left sided player … last night he played through the middle, and the performance was so outstanding that the mind boggles at how good he’ll be when you see him in his intended role.
What last night certainly accomplished was to erase any doubts that we do have a footballer capable of playing in various different parts of the pitch. You could see it a mile away, from his very earliest touches on the ball; his confidence, his range of passing, his eye for exploiting any lapse or gap in the opposition side. The boy looks absolute quality.
Rae should be cringing. He has been humiliated big time here, and we’ve only see the first 75 minutes of what this player has to offer us. And he has no excuse. He only had to listen to those who’ve watched Hatate play to get it, like the US journalist who said that out of the three signings that this player might be the best of the bunch.
He could have gritted his teeth and accepted that our manager certainly knows what he’s talking about. If Kyogo isn’t evidence of that I don’t know what is; this guy has seen these players up close and knows everything about what they’ll provide.
Rae hates Celtic and that’s what motivated his idiotic rant.
It must have been obvious to him in the aftermath, when we all wrote about it, that he was at risk of being made to look an utter clown – like Johnson, who squirmed like a fish on a hook today in his interview with Beth Rigby – and that’s why he blatantly misrepresented the words that had come out of his own mouth when previously pressed on them.
But like Johnson, he’s caught by his words and can’t escape.
They are on the record. He did, on a public radio show, suggest that Hatate was overhyped because footballers are only comfortable in one part of the pitch, and then less than a minute later praised Ibrox’s new loanee on the basis of his versatility.
Well, Hatate delivered last night on the hype. He was superb.
Rae should be brought to book for his stupid remarks, and I know that when he emerges from his hidey-hole and turns up on Clyde that the handful of listeners who do have a spark of intelligence will be waiting for him, just as the likes of Jackson will have to eat humble pie for their own idiotic utterances.
Rae is a bad joke on the audience. This could not have happened to a worthier individual, unless it was Boyd himself. Rae has been made to look worse than a fool here.
He has been made to look … well, like Alex Rae.