Even Naismith appreciates Edouard's moment of Celtic class

By David Walton

December 21, 2020

When Craig Gordon wakes up this morning, the only thing running through his mind should be embarrassment.

Not because Celtic beat Hearts in the Scottish Cup final at Hampden you see. No, it’s his reaction to being absolutely done by Odsonne Edouard that was pretty shameful.

Edouard slotted home a panenka in yesterday’s cup final. Gordon then reacted by trying to throw the ball off of him during the celebration. It was absolutely ridiculous and saw the Hearts stopper pick up a yellow card.

And to make matters even more cringey for him, even anti-Celtic Steven Naismith was happy to acknowledge Edouard’s quality. The pro-Rangers striker, who spent five years at Ibrox, held his hands up and praised the Frenchman’s bottle.

As quoted by the Scottish Sun, Naismith said: “The biggest emotion is disappointment because we were so close. In the first half we didn’t get our timings right between knowing when to jump out of our shape and put pressure on them and when not to. That meant they dominated.

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“If a Panenka wins you the Cup, it wins you the Cup. I’ve seen many goalies, even in training, react the same way. It’s not that big a deal for me. To have the bottle to do that in the Cup final just shows you the quality of player that Edouard is.”

Celtic striker showed no disrespect to Gordon

It’s clear Gordon felt some level of disrespect with Edouard’s moment of magic. As if he wasn’t taking the penalty seriously perhaps. Or maybe Gordon felt he deserved more respect given the history he has with the Celtic players. He did spend six years here right enough.

But that would be fine if the panenka was in any way disrespectful. Is there an element of showboating to it? Sure I suppose so, but it’s also something that no goalkeeper expects their opponent to do.

Edouard will have known that Gordon was going to choose a way. He, therefore, decided to take a panenka knowing that the Hearts stopper wouldn’t have had a chance to save it.

Celtic striker Odsonne Edouard (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Where is the line of respect here? At what point does a penalty become disrespectful? All Edouard did in all seriousness was send the goalkeeper the wrong way. Surely just by firing it down the middle then you’re also disrespecting the goalkeeper? Or if you send him the wrong way?

Gordon should be totally ashamed of his reaction. He’s supposed to be a veteran of the game. Someone who can keep his head and play the role model role for younger players. At face value, it looks as though Gordon simply couldn’t take being done by Eddy.

The panenka is an absolutely glorious move if it can be pulled off. It’s like a nutmeg or a Cruyff turn. It’s sublime in nature and shows the character of a player to pull it off. Naismith’s comments on Edouard proves that there’s an appreciation of the quality shown with his actions yesterday. And given Naismith once again showed how anti-Celtic he is yesterday, that reflects dreadfully on Gordon.

In other news, this Celtic star was keen to rub salt in Hearts wounds yesterday as he enacted revenge.