Celtic will be counting the cost of Dubai trip for years, but the fans will pay price

By Euan Davidson

January 6, 2021

Imagine this scenario: your grandchild asks you “but Celtic looked so close to the 10, what happened?”. What do you tell them?

You could tell them that it was a combination of factors. For a start, the club panicked in the transfer market. Then, Lennon didn’t have a settled first team for weeks, and lost two derbies.

The final nail in the coffin, though? That could be the ramifications of Celtic’s trip to Dubai.

We’ve already spoken a lot about the ill-fated sojourn to the UAE, its conflict with the values of the club, the timing, and so on. Now, with the Daily Record reporting that Kilmarnock will cite the trip in an SFA complaint, don’t be surprised if it costs the club in terms of the league table.

It’s difficult to envision a scenario where Celtic aren’t punished in some form. Kilmarnock and St. Mirren were punished with 3-0 defeats for their Covid indiscretions (Herald).

If a situation develops in which Celtic players are forced to self-isolate, we could well see league postponements. The Bhoys already have three fixtures to honour, and are 19 points behind Rangers with those games in hand.

Celtic manager Neil Lennon / (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Celtic shambles will further anger supporters

That being the case, do you really think Celtic supporters won’t protest again?

Imagine losing out for good on a historic 10IAR because the players just had to travel to the United Arab Emirates during a global pandemic. It’s the kind of soap opera stuff that makes Scottish football so entertaining, but Celtic fans could do without more dramatics.

Losing any more points would be the death knell of the Bhoys’ title hopes. It’s bad enough to have essentially handed the 10 to Rangers on the pitch. But to add this nonsense is a kick in the teeth.

Especially when supporters have shelled out so much money this season, only to watch events unfold from home.

This board absolutely does not help itself. We have to ask if we’re using the same PR agency as the Conservative Party. Like the Tories, Celtic have lurched from one disaster to the next without a coherent strategy, and to the dismay of so many.

It’s utterly shambolic stuff. Kilmarnock have to use multiple team buses to get to games (Daily Record). They’re right to be annoyed at Celtic players lounging together by a pool in sunny Dubai.

Celtic is traditionally a working-class club for the people. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never felt more disconnected from the club in terms of their decisions and ethos.

Not only is the Dubai trip a massive slap in the face to Hoops fans suffering during the pandemic. By surrendering a historic title through incompetence and bureaucracy, the club have conspired to disappoint the supporters so comprehensively that it looks purposeful.