Aberdeen 2 – 1 Celtic
What reaction do you expect from Celtic after a league cup exit to Ross County?
Under Ronny Deila, the same performance you usually get when there’s another big game that needs to be won.
Aberdeen deserved their win because they wanted it more and Celtic look like a side unable to fight or to be more precise, not willing to fight for their manager.
A wonder goal from Johnny Hayes and the obligatory conversion from a set piece killed off Celtic. Leigh Griffiths’ consolation was lucky if it raised a cheer from the travelling support, such is their ever decreasing faith in the manager.
Delia’s words are now hollow and the team’s efforts, equally so.
“I accept it’s a bad situation, but the situation is also that we are top of the league three points clear.”
Ronny is right, they are three points clear at the top of the table, but it is Aberdeen with all the belief that the miracle could happen, when really it shouldn’t.
The budget, the squad, the individuals with talent in that Celtic side suggest it should be an easy title win, but the one element that weakens the argument remains, the manager.
Backed by a board with players they feel are in the pay structure, some investments for future sales, some borrowed and some not wanted, but worth a gamble is how you sum up the recruitment.
A wiser manager may be able to mould a settled eleven and motivate them, but Ronny is not that man.
Let me tell you, nobody with any sense in the scottish media wants or forces a manager to get sacked.
Your eyes and ears do not deceive you. The Celtic team is rudderless and in need of a new direction to keep their title challenge alive.
They could limp their way to this title, but would you trust Deila to get you into the Champions League on the evidence of his time in charge of this team?
Ronny’s message was clear after the game. “We just have to keep calm, working and believe in the things we are doing.”
“Together we’re going to do it.”
Wise words, but clearly falling on deaf ears with his players and the fans.
The Celtic board are backing the wrong horse in this race and if Aberdeen do catch them and get their noses in front, there will be calls for more than the manager’s head for the inactivity and lack of leadership at critical points in this season.