Celtic’s 3-0 victory over Clyde today is unlikely going to be one that lives long in the memory.
Although pleasing to see the team knocked in another three goals without reply, ultimately it was a pretty muted match in horrendous weather that we’ll be glad to move on from.
There was a bit of pressure on Celtic’s shoulders today with all the chat heading into the encounter surrounding Clyde’s 2006 shock over us. However, you’d have never known it by the way Neil Lennon’s team rotated team performed.
First-half goals from Olivier Ntcham and Scott Brown eased any nerves and a routine second half, including a scoring cameo from Vakoun Bayo, got the job done.
The most interesting talking points coming out of the encounter surround some of the players on the fringes of Lennon’s regular starting eleven.
What can we take away from Sunday’s match?
Don’t write off Shved yet
The status of Marian Shved has been an underlying story throughout’s Celtic season with it becoming to look like the Ukrainian winger might never get the minutes he needs to make an impact at the Hoops.
Prior to today’s match, he hadn’t even been including in a matchday 18 since October, making just two substitutes appearances since signing in the summer.
Included at Clyde though, it appears he is still very much in Neil Lennon’s plans.
He even came off the bench to show a bit of hunger and eagerness to impress in the final few minutes of the game, looking pretty sharp on the ball.
It may have been a cup game against lower-league opposition but the fact Shved was in the squad ahead of any homegrown youngsters suggests Lennon still sees something in the player.
Hopefully, he can prove to be reliable cover for James Forrest, who is still playing too many matches and must be kept freshest for our toughest tests.
Moritz Bauer is still eager to impress
Bauer’s loan move from Stoke City may not have worked out in the way he wanted last summer but that hasn’t quelled his desire to work hard and perform for the Hoops, based on today.
With Hatem Abd Elhamed first preferred and then youngster Jeremie Frimpong becoming a regular over both, Bauer has had to remain patient for his chances this term.
A recent change of formation has further pushed him out of the fixture with Forrest providing right wing-back duties.
Today’s match against lower-league opposition might not be the most motivating encounter for many loan players.
However, given a chance to impress today, the Austrian did well on the right flank and was one of our more industrious players, often stretching his legs to try and get beyond the opposition defensive line.
Frimpong remains the undoubted first-choice and it will be welcome when Elhamed returns but at least Bauer can step in when required without fuss.
Klimala is adjusting but there are positive signs
It would have been harsh to have expected a massive statement from Patryk Klimala on his first start in a Celtic jersey.
A match in devilish weather conditions is hardly the ideal environment to show off your skills.
He’ll definitely be disappointed not to have buried his big first-half one-on-one chance but overall there were glimpses of a confident player who can gel with others in the final third.
He also has good pace and decent enough movement that will hopefully allow him to continue to get into good scoring positions.
Coming out of the match with an assist after helping Scott Brown score, there can’t be too many complaints about his first start.
However, it’s clear he is not currently quite at the level that Odsonne Edouard and Leigh Griffiths are performing at, so it’d be expected they continue their flourishing partnership in upcoming matches.