This Is Ibrox’s Shot. If Celtic Leaves With A Win, Clement’s Countdown Clock Starts.

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If you missed Clement’s sit-down with the media today, it was every bit as arrogant, preening and stupid as you could have hoped for. He didn’t give us a shred of credit for the comfortable win over them at Celtic Park.

He accused Kyogo of producing magic he hasn’t seen him do against any other team. He played down the midfield performance of McGregor and said he thought that his own hapless players were just as good as him on the day.

The more sensible of the Ibrox fans must have been cringing. It was divorced from reality, and small-minded with it. I don’t expect him to say that Celtic’s performance that day was brilliant and that we left them in dust – although I think we did. But you do expect a little professional courtesy and respect and he couldn’t even muster those things.

“For sure for their second goal, an exceptional goal, that I didn’t see that player do in the rest of the season,” he said of Kyogo’s strike. Such a cheap shot, and one that he has to limit to this season because Kyogo has been producing that quality since he was signed.

On McGregor’s performance in the last game, I thought he was even more deluded. “”I don’t agree that he dominated the play at Celtic Park. There were moments that he was good on the ball but there were also moments where he wasn’t dominating the game. I think my midfielders also dominated the game in moments.”

Not only was he not willing to credit McGregor’s performance against his team, he took a shot at The Mooch whilst he was at it. I saw the first game and it’s true he was dominating but I don’t need to say too much about that,” he snarked.

This guy … this guy is just begging to be brought down a peg or two, and Brendan Rodgers is the perfect manager to accomplish that goal. And if he succeeds, Clement is going to find that the love-in that he’s been at the centre of ends right quick.

The thing is, Clement knows that.

He knows that every Ibrox boss gets a honeymoon, whereas every Celtic boss gets an interrogation. If he doesn’t know that then he’s not done his due diligence. He has to be aware that the same honey being poured on him was being poured on his predecessor and the guy before him and the one before him and the one before him ad infinitum.

He says he wants “passion” in his dressing room not mathematicians; he’s referring to the points that will separate the sides at full time, regardless of the outcome.

But he can do the math here just fine on his own. He took over a team which was seven points behind and there were few expectations on his shoulders. Now he’s the guy in charge of the side most of the hacks believe has it in their hands, and he knows as well as anybody what that means.

It means that instead of being the guy who came onto a sinking ship and delayed the inevitable, he’s now quite possibly the guy who rescued the ship and then … steered it onto the rocks. And that will have the Peepul asking hard questions about him when the season ends if that’s how things turn out. He has to win this title. After getting them in front, nothing less will do.

But someone should be clueing him into the next reality; teams are already starting to figure his out, which is why Motherwell were able to go to Ibrox and win. It’s why his team is back requiring the assistance of the Honest Mistakes to get them out of a hole.

We go there on Sunday with a slight edge in the league race, but they have the game in hand. Still, they pretty much need to win, they need to capitalise on the home advantage and for this one they have everything in their favour except that we’re starting to look really good again, and that means it’s not as big an advantage as they think.

Nevertheless, this is their home ground, in front of their own fans with none of ours available to back up the team. They have their hand-picked official on the park, and we’re going into it with two key midfield players who aren’t 100% fit.

By the start of the next campaign, we should have flexed our financial muscle and backed the manager. Crawford Allan will be gone. The next time we roll up at Ibrox we’ll do it with somewhere between 2500-3000 of our fans with us … and that’s no small number. With any luck we’ll have fit squad and even better players in it.

So, this is it for this guy. This is his shot.

This is his big moment. He needs to win or there will be tough scrutiny on him for the first time since he arrived in Scotland. Oh it won’t be the scrutiny that a Celtic manager gets, that won’t happen to this guy until he’s in an irretrievable tailspin and it will only happen then because the hacks are convinced that the club won’t recover until he’s gone.

But there will be no more chatter about how he strides across Scottish football as the all-conquering hero of their dreams, and having gotten used to that kind of hero worship it could one Hell of a high place from which to fall.

I personally think he realises all this, on some level, and that’s why he sounds the way he does. A guy talking about how he is looking forward to the game but who is snarking and sniping like someone who is feeling the pressure.

Rodgers, on the other hand, has been through all this before. When he says that he’s relaxed and that the players are relaxed I have no doubt that he means every word of it. He is the best manager in this country. That’s Clement’s real problem.

Come Sunday, I suspect that he’ll be left with no illusions about that, or about a bitter truth that will be waiting for him if Celtic win this league; his countdown clock will have started, and as every manager knows, that only stops once, and in one way.

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  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    Please, Please Brendan and your Hoops put him to the sword on Sunday…

    He was probably an alright guy until he drank whatever hallucigenic water at Liebrox that seems to send them utterly crazed in life…

    If he wins meeting some Sevco Huns that I know and can’t avoid will be bloody unbearable indeed !!!

    Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeezzzzzze Just win Celtic !

    • Nick66 says:

      Ah Clach, The loving Cup has touched his lips. If not then he must have tripped over the rusty bike and banged his head on the reversed kit man’s urn.

  • Mark James Callaghan says:

    Tight and our strengths we will boss this. Mid field battle. Cal Mac starts set the pace. Got this bhoys. HH

  • Nick66 says:


  • Effarr says:

    He seems to know a lot about players in a team he claimed not to watch only last week.

  • Jim M says:

    If we can start and play like we did at home to Athletico Madrid we’ll run over them , we have to go right from the start and let them run ragged chasing shadows.

    • Mr magoo says:

      Yeah he’s deffo been drinkin John greigs bile out of the loving cup.

      Poor bastard will be gone at seasons end with his nosferatu twin alex rae.

      I really really expect us to come away with a result today. We’d better cos I.m playin golf at 2.30 with a couple of sevconuts.


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