The Daily Record has a piece up at the moment entitled “Japan boss in fresh Celtic snub as UK expedition skips Parkhead amid Hatate and Kyogo omissions.” The writer of this dire article is a guy called Ben Banks, who I’ve written about before.
He is one of the worst people working at a mainstream title in Scotland, little more than a clickbait blogger on a national title. His “articles” are usually weak, devoid of actual content and embarrassingly poor quality.
His piece tonight is all of that, but it’s also the latest in the media’s campaign to unsettle our players from Japan with the oblique suggestion that they’ll never be capped as long as they are here. Which, actually, is completely disregarded by the fact that their manager has consistently named Maeda to his squads and has continued doing it even as others are overlooked.
Hajime Moriyasu is causing himself nothing but trouble in continuing to overlook Hatate and Kyogo. Many in the Japanese media are unhappy with him for it, and his decision making is now under real scrutiny, and constant questioning.
Banks’ report is idiotic. It opens with a phrase that no creditable journalist would ever put in an article, far less on the very first line. “Hajime Moriyasu has seemingly missed out on visiting Celtic stars from the Land of the Rising Sun in his visit to the UK.”
The word “seemingly” is an awful one for a journalist to use. It’s clunky for a start, and shows him up as a poor writer. But it’s also a subjective word, and it straight away tells you that the entire piece is going to be speculative guff.
The whole article is based on a piece in the Japanese media, and the fact that it mentions other clubs but not Celtic. It’s a paper thin pretext for devoting a piece to.
“The Japan national team manager was in attendance at Brighton’s FA Cup semi-final with Manchester United on Saturday as Kaoru Mitoma featured for the Seagulls. He has also been to see Arsenal’s Takehiro Tomiyasu and Hudderfield’s Yuta Nakayama who are currently in rehabilitation, but there is no mention of Parkhead or Lennoxtown in Sponichi’s report,” he writes.
And my answer to that is “so what?”
Does it mean that he wasn’t in attendance at Celtic games, or just that the writer of the piece in Japan didn’t know that? Even if he didn’t attend, has this guy watched every game on the continent in which players from his country are taking part in?
Even if he hasn’t been to Celtic, does that mean he hasn’t watched our games?
A lot of managers do their long-range viewing of targets and international bosses do their picks, watching on wide-screen televisions … it’s not like there aren’t Celtic games being shown over there after all. And even without that, the Japanese media covers our games in detail and the exploits of Kyogo in particular. So what exactly is this story supposed to be about?
“Moriyasu then prompted debate when he said the quality of the Scottish league was a factor in his decision making. It is not known whether or not he will circle back to Scotland for a look at Ange Postecoglou’s Asian stars,” he writes, which tells you what the article is trying to do. It’s nothing short of a Daily Record effort at sending a message to these guys that they won’t be picked for their national teams whilst they are at Celtic Park.
It’s a scare story. And since it’s not directed at the fans, it’s clearly directed at the players.
Of course, it’s an utter waste of whatever effort it took to produce the piece because I’ll tell you what none of our Japanese players are doing and that’s wasting their own time, effort and energy reading clickbait garbage in The Daily Record.
So although this is appearing in a national title and with a clear intent, it’s pissing in the wind.
Still, as something clearly designed to cause up problems it’s worth highlighting and slapping down.
Doubtless it’ll be picked up and run with elsewhere, but honestly, it’s a shockingly poor attempt at stirring the soup, one that takes second hand information and puts an anti-Celtic spin on it.
You’d think we had a big game coming up or something.