Mikey Johnston Did Well For Ireland, But That’s Not The Same As Doing It For Celtic.

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I was glad to see that Mikey Johnston last night continued his trend of putting in good displays for his national team. The media is saying he sent a “coded message” to Brendan Rodgers.

I read his comments. There was nothing particularly coded about them. But I can tell you what Rodgers will be thinking; what have you done for me lately?

Mikey Johnston can have all the good games for Ireland that he wants. The only way he wins the place in the Celtic team that he craves is when he can do it consistently for us.

He faces an uphill battle and as we know, earlier in the month he seemed to be coming to the reluctant view that it was maybe one that he wasn’t going to win.

With Maeda and Abada out injured and Celtic facing this spell of lots of games, this is the moment for him to work harder than he ever has and to dig in deep.

He might get a chance to come on at the weekend; if he does, he needs to grab it.

As it stands, either he or Forrest will play in Rome next Tuesday because in addition to those injuries Palma has a one match suspension.

If he gets selected, he will never have a bigger opportunity to show the manager what he can do, and all of his focus should be on preparing for the Motherwell match so that if he gets on, he can make it count.

And he needs to make it count, of course.

You get the impression that’s its slipping away from Mikey Johnston a bit now. He has been at Celtic Park a long time, and he’s still not made the breakthrough we all expected when he played in his debut season to a lot of acclaim.

He’s been unlucky with injuries, and wasn’t helped by being played out of position as a central striker on a number of occasions, to no positive effect. But he’s never convinced on a consistent basis, he’s never given us reasons to consider him a regular.

So time is running out, and whilst it is good to see that he turned in a good display for his country, the only ones that matter are the one he turns in for us, and so far there haven’t been enough of those.

He will get his chance soon … if he doesn’t grab this one it might be his last.

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  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Fine sayin he’s doin well for ROI, tho these games have been against Gibraltar and New Zealand. The likes of Oh for example, who ah think most Celtic fans, includin myself, have been thinkin he’s no good enough, he’s at least and at last, startin tae show a bit of the form we were hopin for and gettin in amongst the goals. He’s no been in the club anywhere near the length of time MJ has. If MJ gets this chance and there’s nothin there any different from his previous games, we should sell him on in January if we can. Even if he does show an improvement, he’ll need tae be consistent and no just for 1 or 2 games.

  • Johnno says:

    Last night was your typical mickey Johnston performance within a desperately poor Irish team?
    Wasn’t particularly hard to make himself a stand out, but against the might of New Zealand?
    As usual Johnston promised much, but as usual delivered next to nothing upon the final ball.
    So nothing new in what we have become so use to within the overall game of Johnston?
    He certainly has ability, but the problem within his game still remains as to be, that teammates haven’t a clue upon what Johnston is going to do with the ball when he’s in possession, so making runs remains a guessing game for those around him,and Johnston still lacks the ability to even pick out a teammates in a good position imo?
    Now you could put that down to not getting a run of games to build up an understanding of the player’s around him, but he’s never gained enough consistency to remain within a team in the first place?
    The defensive side of his game remains brutal to non existent, and still very capable of losing the ball in dangerous position to set up the counter attacks for the opposition?
    For a player that we once hoped had the potential to have a massive career with ourselves, and really hoped he would succeed also.
    But unfortunately has got to a stage now where I can’t see it ever happening for him now?
    Unfortunately we still find ourselves in a situation where player’s like Johnston and Mccarthy offer us nothing more than making up squad numbers for a European football campaign, yet still wouldn’t want to have to use them, especially when not being regarded as good enough for ourselves at SPFL level?
    This issue that haunts ourselves within CL football, will be tested to the max in Rome.
    But can anyone really see Johnston as being a potential match winner?
    I certainly can’t anyway

  • Darragh ó Conchobhair says:

    Best natural finisher at the club.

  • Allan Hayes says:

    Might be his last should read will be his last,this boy has had more opportunities than Shved,Bolingoli,Soro and quite a few others,we need to get guys like Siegrest,McCarthy, Bernabie,Kouabashi out,possibly move Johnson(Mikey) and Idiguchi also and bring in a striker,central (holding)midfielder,left back and a goalkeeper ? ????

  • Celticfcman says:

    Mikey is similar at this stage to James Forrest in his younger days before Brendan helped him unlock his potential. Both had injury issues. I know Forrest showed more success at the same age, but we all see the potential is there. Rodgers has had success with getting Johnston to take fitness seriously, and now that he’s truly available for selection, he’ll have his Ryan Christie moment. Our favorite blogger stated himself that he did not believe Forrest had that next level in his locker for a long time, until Brendan arrived. There is no rush, provided he stays healthy and continues to improve. He’s a far better risk than continuing to sign projects or old EPL guys past their prime.

  • Damian says:

    I’m not sure I can remember a player who’s had a longer time to make an impression at the club. He made his debut in 2017. He’s clearly a skilful player but his decision-making in the difference-making situations just isn’t good enough.

    Yes, it’s all well and good that he’s putting in some good performances for the Republic, but he debuted for ROI having made himself available for Scotland for four years, and didn’t manage to get a game – without Scotland being over-burdened with obvious talent in his specific position. There’s a reason. Ireland is also clearly going through a transitional phase and does not have a terribly good team at this time. If you’re not good enough to get a cap for Scotland, you’re not likely to be good enough for Celtic. Some decent performances against relatively poor opponents for a not terribly good Ireland team doesn’t change that.

    I’d be happy to be proven wrong on this, of course.

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