For a while there Celtic fans were debating whether Maeda could have been player of the year. Then it was Kyogo. Then it was Aaron Mooy. Carter Vickers has had his turn. A rejuvenated Jota is in the running. If Tillman can make the shortlist Abada, with better stats, should already be on it. Now we’re discussing whether Hatate is the runaway leader.
The Player of the Year list will be almost totally dominated by our players. The organisers will say that’s not fair and they will throw a couple of others into the mix, but that’ll be just for show. Every one they put in there in the interests of “balance” leaves out a deserving candidate in the Hoops. Let’s see what their “sporting integrity” is worth.
The more pressing dilemma is the one facing The Mooch at the weekend, for how do you set up your team, in a winner takes all match, when the opposition has so many threats that it probably won’t even have all of them out on the field?
Celtic has the players to turn a game if need be. We have the players who can put their lights out from the word go, but if it comes to the crunch and we need to make changes we can easily do it. When so many of us are arguing about a player of the year contender, and who in the Celtic squad it should be, spare a thought (and a laugh) for The Mooch, who has to come up with a coherent strategy to tame every single one of our candidates.
Even the players who we aren’t talking about as player of the year possibles – McGregor, O’Riley, Turnbull, Haksabanovic, Oh – there’s talent and class there. There are goals in those guys, and they are raring to go in this match.
They do have players capable of threating us. This is why we can’t be complacent. But look at this team of ours, at the talent it has, at the firepower it has. If we turn up for business, we’ll get business done and if we do that they don’t stand a chance.