If Neil Lennon’s Celtic had stuttered and stumbled on the Tynecastle surface on Wednesday night, few could have blamed them. The pitch in the capital was an abomination for the visit of the Champions. It’s almost as if hosting an Edinburgh Fringe concert on it in early August wasn’t a good idea.
Had we dropped points then many supporters would have used the pitch as a pretty valid excuse. The players and management may even have joined in too. So just because we managed to navigate a tricky clash with relative ease, doesn’t mean that we should just accept our surroundings and move on.
Live on BT Sport in front of the nation, the playing surface would have done little to raise the appeal of the Scottish game. Many neutrals who turned the game on would have switched it back off just as quickly after seeing the turf cut up at every opportunity.
Tynecastle pitch was noted by some Celtic fans
Admittedly, it’s not Hearts’ duty to single handedly make the Scottish game look more appealing for broadcasters. Neither is it their prerogative to let us have everything our own way at their home. But surely they should be doing more to make sure that the game at least has a chance to thrive.
Some Celtic supporters were also keen to point out the shambles of a playing surface that Neil Lennon’s men were forced to put up with.
You see pitches down the park on a Sunday morning better than that embarrassment at Tynecastle
— Adam Lynch (@AdamLynch27) December 18, 2019
The groundsmen at Tynecastle should be sacked immediately, aye ok its hosing it down but the pitch is a quagmire.
— John (@Goose1167) December 18, 2019
Tynecastle pitch is embarrassing 😂
— Dean Coyle (@deancoyl3) December 18, 2019
Pitch at Tynecastle is appalling btw!!!! #leveller
— Mark McGuire (@markmcguire04) December 18, 2019
Tynecastle pitch is an absolute joke
— Jordan (@JordanCairns_21) December 18, 2019
Celtic won’t be back for some time
The whole event must have served as a real embarrassment to the Hearts hierarchy who have proven themselves to be pretty astute off the pitch in recent seasons.
Yes it’s December, and the weather wasn’t great, but you’re not telling me they can’t produce a better surface than that. Perhaps not grabbing the money in August from the Fringe would have been a smarter way to go about things.
From a Celtic point of view, let’s just be glad we won’t have to go there for a while yet. If Hearts’ current slump continues we won’t be back this season. And that may be pretty welcome from our point of view.