What a joke our media is. Not at times, but all the way down the line. Imagine some desperate hack fishing for a story by asking Brendan Rodgers a question about whether or not the Celtic board would turn down some hypothetical bid from a Saudi club after the transfer window was shut. It’s a ridiculous query and the person asking it knows it is.
The transfer windows of Europe shut at exactly the same time, and so if it’s a risk then it’s one that we are sharing with every club on the continent. Every single one of them. The question could just as easily have been asked to Michael Beale except that his club would almost certainly accept any such offer no matter who it was from. And they are not remotely likely to be facing that dilemma anyway. Celtic, at least, has the sort of quality where we might.
It’s a cheap and easy story and one entirely without merit.
If the Saudis are still trawling for players when the European window shuts, I very much doubt they will be shopping in the SPFL, and if I’m being honest I do believe that Celtic would turn down any bid received after we could no longer buy a replacement, although Rodgers was much more cautious in his answer.
The obvious desire some in the media have for seeing us weakened is something I wrote about yesterday, and this question is another manifestation of it and a particularly naked one considering that it’s extremely unlikely to come about.
The player they most obviously have in mind, of course, is Reo Hatate, whose agent has already dismissed stories linking him to a move to Saudi as being without foundation and something in which the player has exactly zero interest. I’m sure they are also thinking about Abada and Kyogo to some extent; I think those scenarios are even less likely.
Nothing frustrates you more, as a Celtic fan, than this kind of loaded question and the double standard of knowing it would never be asked of a manager across the city. It’s a disgrace that Celtic bosses have to tolerate this stuff, and it’s a disgrace that it is allowed to go on. All that question represented was a chance at an easy headline.
But at the centre of it is a kind of desperate need that some of these Peepul have to imagine us weaker than we are right now. That’s what drives a lot of the reporting we have to put up with.
As every fan of this club knows, we are surrounded by people who are implacably hostile to us, and the manager knows that as well as anyone, just as the last one did and the one before him and on and on and on. It doesn’t matter what they are from; Norway, Ireland, England, Australia … they all come to feel the same way about our brand of “journalism.”
In short, they come to hate these people with every fibre of their being.