Yesterday, the ridiculous Daily Record off-shoot Football Scotland posted one of its worst articles in a long time. Entitled “5 Celtic assets Ange Postecoglou could face losing as manager admits ‘alert’ to key transfer exits”, it’s written by the notoriously honking Mark Hendry and it is every bit as bad as the headline might suggest.
Ange’s brief remark the other day about how we were ready for anything in the summer could have been promoted, as the man intended it to be, as a sign that we would not be caught short or taken by surprise by any developments.
But of course, some of the hacks are spinning it so that it sounds like the manager is resigned to the losing of virtually the whole playing squad. This article is a particularly noxious example of someone indulging in a little bit of wishful thinking.
So who are these five players? One of them is going to make you laugh. But I’ll get to him in a moment. Let’s do the other four first, and they are fairly obvious. Hendry might be letting his fantasies run away with him here but they are pretty dull stuff and if there’s a spark of even the most basic originality in them I can’t see it.
Liel Abada is first, of course. Because there are already rumours about him, rumours which won’t go away but to be honest have haunted him since he kicked his first ball for the club and showed what an asset he was going to be. Apparently the club is “willing to do business if the price is right.” Based on reports Hendry has read elsewhere of course.
Next up is Matt O’Riley, and what have I already written about him today? This is just another example of sheer laziness and lack of imagination with these people. He has a couple of good matches and all of a sudden he’s linked everywhere again. There is nothing concrete about bids for him so this is just smoke and mirrors, a favourite pastime of hacks who aren’t held to account for the rubbish that they occasionally write.
Next up, Hendry has Jota amongst those who could be leaving. There is, of course, not one word either rumoured or otherwise to suggest that this is the case, but that doesn’t stop this eejit from crossing his fingers and hoping for the best.
And of course at number four is Hatate. I bet you thought I was going to so Kyogo. But Hendry, for some reason, doesn’t include him in the article because he’s not the mystery man and strange choice at number five either … in fact the Japanese striker seems to be one of the few footballers Hendry actually seems to think will stay at Celtic Park.
Hatate, of course, is an obvious one.
He points out that Brighton have been sniffing and that’s kind of funny and lazy at the same time because of all the stuff yesterday about Mitoma and how he had the choice of both clubs and went to England (for the money.) Yet I think Mitoma made a huge mistake and I think Hatate would be doing the same if he moved to such a club, and actually it’s one of the areas where Hendry and I agree.
But he saved the best for last, and I suppose we’ve all really just been waiting for the first journalist to write the first story on this, and here it is; the first suggestion that we will struggle to hang onto our astonishingly good signing at right back, Alastair Johnston.
“If AJ can continue on his current trajectory it’s unfathomable that he won’t make it big and be plying his trade in England’s top tier down the line or, again, in one of Europe’s top leagues around the globe,” Hendry writes breathlessly.
Yeah but the point of this article is that Ange might lose him this summer or should someone remind Hendry of that fact? And you just know there is no earthly way that Celtic is parting company with this kid a mere six months after he signed.
That whole article stinks to high heaven.
I am only amazed that he didn’t throw Carter Vickers, Kyogo and Maeda in there just for the Hell of it. But in touting Johnston for a move it’s clear that this clown wants to stir the soup some. It reeks.