The Decisive Absences For Celtic Yesterday Were The Ones The Boss Had No Choice In.

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Ange is getting it in the neck this morning from the armchair coaches who reckon the problem yesterday was that he made six changes. They forget – or choose not to remember – that we made nine for the Ross County League Cup game and won easily.

The biggest impact on the team yesterday did come from players who would usually have been in the side and who were not. But these weren’t guys the boss left out in the name of rotation; he had no choice in it.

Starfelt, Carter Vickers and Juranovic were injured.

And we felt their absence. It was obvious in how we lost both of the goals.

We were playing yesterday with a makeshift back four, and it told.

It was clear. You can rotate certain areas of your team better than others; a defence gets its solidity from consistent partnerships. The manager was robbed of that and the impact on the side was obvious.

Not that it offers any alibi for the failures of the midfield and the front men, but a game poised at 0-0 would have given St Mirren a dilemma about whether to defend with all they had or to chase a winner.

When a side has a lead that decision is largely made for them.

St Mirren, especially after the second, didn’t have to do more than contain us.

When your midfield and front men aren’t doing the job on a given day the defence simply has to be up to the task, and they let us down yesterday more than the forwards did.

But it’s hard to point the finger at them when there are three changes to the line-up in that area from the team that played last season, and none of them were tactical.

Ange took the hit yesterday when he accepted responsibility for the team selection, but on this one I think we need to cut the man some slack. Sometimes it’s out of a manager’s hands how much he chops and changes, and that was the situation here.

It was a horrible day, but we’ll move past it.

The most important game at Celtic is always the next one, and what we have to hope for is a fully fit squad to choose from.

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  • Gerry Boyle says:

    The biggest problem seemed to be Turnbull and Mooy were far too slow to transition the play compared to Hatate and O’Riley who are always on the front foot.

  • Peterbrady says:

    And no doubt the media scum will drag out zombies ebt filth from the deid club/team to say the Bhoys and Ange will collapse like a straw hoose ha ha no chance when the glibster puts his poison into sevco fat park and donkeyhurst we will see who folds down the sewers like the vermin they are HAIL! HAIL! COYBIG in Ange we trust.

  • Domsa67 says:

    Does nobody think the grey strips played a part? Celtic’s quick passing game wasn’t helped by the fact that it was more difficult to pick out a teammate with peripheral vision. Wrong decision to wear that strip. We should always wear the Hoops where possible.

    Anyhoo, let’s look forward to another year without a domestic defeat.

  • Saulgoodman says:

    9 changes against Ross County but they won , 6 changes yesterday + they lost + lost badly thats why he’s getting it in the neck + rightly so .

  • Roonsa says:

    St Mirren deserve a lot of credit for the way they approached the game yesterday. Celtic just couldn’t handle them physically at the back. So we defo missed CCV. I hope to Christ he is not out for long.

  • John Copeland says:

    Mikey Stewart knows the time of day ! When he states Celtic got bullied by St Mirren ,I pay attention .We don’t have the muscle power to bully teams ourselves ,CCV aside .It’s all fine to play fast, silky ,football ,but you also need guys in there who if opposition players leave some in ,have the balls to say ,hey you ,baw heid ,try that on me and see what happens ! With respect ,Daezen ,Reo ,Kyogo and Liel Abada are hardly middleweights ,are they ?If you accept it ,you better be prepared to dish it out ,too !

  • jrm63 says:

    We stopped passing the ball. Mooy and Turnbull were awful. The rot started in the middle of the park and Jenz and Welsh did not help them. They did not advance with the ball at their feet once. Questions have to be asked about starting Abada and Maeda away from home. Their contribution was zero. The really worrying factor is Hart. It is just not good enough from him in both games this week. Letting the ball go through you like that is just unacceptable.

  • Tim Buffy says:

    Jenz looks like Jullien Mark 2 against big, physical opponents.

  • MarkE says:

    I disagree with fans slating Turnbull, he was at the heart of most of Celtic’s positive moves.

    St Mirren set up against our system, not our players; even the first team regulars would’ve struggled.

    Jenz was fouled for their second. Welsh was fouled in their box but got nothing. A Celtic player was tripped/fouled off the ball just outside their box, again nothing.

    Granted CCV at the back might’ve done better, but this has been an ongoing problem, with Celtic’s defence being too narrow; we’ve lost a few goals through lack of defensive width allowing teams to get on the end of back post balls.
    Similarly, our weakness against counter attacks has never been properly addressed.

    Kyogo needs space to operate in otherwise its pointless playing him. Giakoumakis needs precise service to head or feet. Dribblers like Jota, Haksabanovic and Abada played through the middle would probably offer us more by way of forcing defenders to commit themselves and perhaps draw a foul

  • Aiden McKellar says:

    Mooy is a slow, ponderous old man. Wouldn’t get a game for St Mirren

  • SSMPM says:

    Agree about Mooy, can’t run but one of Ange’s elderly favourites so gets the gig. In fact I think Ange got it well wrong as you have James. From defence through midfield to the forwards. It’s not that there were 6 changes it was the players selected lack of energy and effort. Saints deserved their victory, played really well and most importantly tried.

  • Johnny Green says:

    You have identified three missing defenders as being the main reason for yesterday’s demise James and I don’t agree with that at all. Jenz for me is a better player than Starfelt, I would not ever have Starfelt in the team unless forced to because of injuries, Ralston for me is every bit as good as Juranovic, so no real loss there. However the loss of CCV is a major negative for our defence and we do need him first and foremost in every team. However, what state then are we going to be in if he gets a long term injury, major soapy bubble by the looks of things.

  • John says:

    It doesn’t matter what the personnel was we pride ourselves in the fact that we have two first teams and and we should have had enough to win that game. Unusual to have every player playing so poorly. Sometimes you just have to suck it up and move on.

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