Once again, it’s the headline that gets me; “Celtic 2-1 Livingston: David Martindale admits Hoops deserved Livi win.”
That was from Sky.
As if there’s a living soul who could have argued the opposite. Martindale usually has an excuse or two. It is telling that last night he had nothing. No diverting, no flannel, no attempts at mitigation.
His team was beaten by the better side. The vastly better side.
But for poor first half finishing, which Ange himself is not best pleased about, it would have been the proverbial cricket score and Martindale knows it and we all bloody well know it.
The lead is nine points again. The goal difference stays 17 in our favour. In spite of the best efforts of the Mibbery, the team has now won its tenth game in a row in the league, the kind of runs which league titles are built on. This is what we do now.
Here are the hard numbers which bear out our superiority.
77% of the possession.
And guess what? That somehow translated into the familiar tale wherein we allegedly committed more fouls; 10 to their 8.
We had 23 shot attempts, to their measly 3.
Our keeper was barely troubled for the whole night, and some think that led to him sleeping on the job when they finally did get up the park and within distance of him. He was suitably pissed off with himself and the defence afterwards, which I think is pretty good actually. No ducking responsibility there.
We had ten shots on target to their two.
There are folk who will sneer that we only managed two goals from that, a 5-1 SOT to goals ratio.
But actually, the ratio was 3-1 because although we didn’t get it I am shamelessly “claiming” Abada’s goal for this analysis as in spite of the pitiful attempts to defend that decision by people kidding on they don’t know the offside rule, there was damn all legitimate reason for them to chop that off.
And we had ten corner kicks to their one, a stat which tells you exactly which ends of the pitch the game was played in. Here’s a clue; not ours.
So yeah, he “admitted” that Celtic deserved to win.
Because seriously, even he doesn’t have the brass ones to try to contend otherwise.
We weren’t at our best, but we were so, so much better than they were on the night.