Celtic interim boss John Kennedy appears to have struck a nerve with Rangers supporters this weekend.
After yesterday’s 6-0 hammering of Livingston at Celtic Park, Kennedy has challenged his players to prove they are the best team in the country during next week’s Scottish Cup tie at Ibrox.
He told The Daily Record: “I have full belief in the squad we have here, that on our day we are still the best team in the country. One hundred-per-cent. That’s the reaction you have to have. There was always going to come a point where we had a setback.
“It was a big one for us this season but the best always bounce back. It’s easy to give up and say ‘oh, we’ve had our time’, but I have said it to the players, it is very much about how we respond to that.
“I think the last game and the 60 minutes at Ibrox we showed that. From my point of view in terms of our level of performance, how we can play and create, there were a lot of positives.
“We just have to be much more clinical at the top end and not be switching off at set-pay moments. That’s been the outcome of the games recently. We will be fully focused on that and we will try to build our performances.”
Listen, I understand that over the course of the season Rangers have been the better team this year. Kennedy understands that too. We’re not idiots, we can see the league table.
However, we know what the interim boss means here. He thinks his team can go and beat Rangers on their own patch and remind everyone of Celtic’s dominance over the last decade.
As Kennedy points out, Celtic deserved to win the last fixture between the two sides and we were also competitive in January before Nir Bitton’s sending off.
It’s not an absurd viewpoint to have optimism heading into next week’s fixture.
A quick look at the responses to this Daily Record tweet shows that Rangers fans are very tender about their champions status. We won’t be posting them here as too many of them are littered with the kind of language we could do without.
— Daily Record Sport (@Record_Sport) April 10, 2021
What I say to it though is this: if your team were really that good, would you be having a meltdown at the passing thoughts of a temporary Celtic manager?
All Kennedy is doing is trying to challenge his team to perform to a certain standard.
It’s not rocket science and it’s not worth the level of outcry on social media we’re seeing.
Now it’s over to the Celtic team to do their talking on the pitch. That’s the most important bit. Prove it.