Amidst all the gibbering praise showering down on Ibrox in midweek, I was aware of two things.
First, how poor Hibs were in a second half where they seemed content to sit on their lead and not venture out of their own half. That was lamentable stupidity and they got exactly what they deserved for attempting it.
You saw it coming a mile off.
Secondly, when they were trying to play football – in the first half – they opened up the Ibrox defence almost at will. They scored twice, forced McGregor into a number of good saves and generally looked good enough to take at least a point.
This is what made the second half performance utterly inexplicable.
Still, the quality of their football in the first half served both as a warning to Celtic for what we can expect at Easter Road eleven days from now and also a good indicator of how we should approach the game when we roll into Ibrox on 2 January.
We have no reason to fear that fixture.
On the evidence of what we witnessed on Thursday night we have the players and the firepower to pull that defence of theirs to pieces, even if they have some key personnel back. The organisation of it was frankly shambolic.
If Hibs can open them up like that we’ll destroy them.
Their strategy might well be to sit back and try and contain us; good luck with that.
In front of their own fans, in a must-win fixture, that would go down like a lead weight. They cannot afford to, in no small part because we would almost certainly find a way to win anyway.
But if they come out and try to play football … well, to be frank, I expect that we’d flay them alive.
We’re a better team in every department and especially so when teams here are daft enough to have a go at us. I didn’t see a single reason to fear them … but every reason to be optimistic that the firepower at our disposal will be more than they can bear.
Hibs took the foot off their throat in midweek, allowing The Mooch to paint himself as some kind of tactical genius who turned around a one goal deficit to win the game. It is, of course, arrant nonsense because all Hibs had to do was keep on playing as they had in the first 45 minutes and they’d have been good for at least a point.
We will show no such mercy. We will press down hard.
That midweek performance should have filled their fans with dread.
That it has sparked euphoria is all the confirmation we needed that these Peepul aren’t playing with a full deck.