Mikey Johnston’s performance against Rangers has been totally dismissed, but in truth, he deserves more sympathy than he’s getting.
There have been some on social media who have actually stated he was poor. Listing him in any category that relates remotely to poor is totally unfair on the highly-talented youngster.
Johnston’s appearance yesterday was his first Glasgow Derby experience as a player. It was also only his 13th game of the season. To say he should be turning up at Ibrox and stealing the show is totally unfair.
With Odsonne Edouard deemed not ready to start the contest yesterday, Johnston was thrown in at the deep end. It was a huge opportunity for him, but he certainly wasn’t helped.
In order for Celtic to get the best out of him, the flair players behind him had to turn up. The likes of Olivier Ntcham, Scott Sinclair, and James Forrest were absolutely dreadful. Ryan Christie gave it his all, but he also struggled to make an impact going forward.
Johnston would’ve been more impactful had the rest turned up
On the rare occasions Celtic did push up and cause a few problems, Johnston looked fairly sharp. On a couple of occasions, he took some clever touches past the likes of Connor Goldson and James Tavernier. Yes, they were forgetful, but it showed that Celtic didn’t make the most of having him in the side yesterday.
MORE CELTIC STORIES
Perhaps it was too much too soon for Johnston, but on another day he really could’ve done some damage. Stick Johnston in during any of the previous games where Celtic have dominated Rangers, and he would’ve had an absolute stormer.
The 1-0 loss at Ibrox simply can’t be used as something to hit the youngster over the head with. He did all he could with the dreadful service he was given throughout. Brendan Rodgers should be blaming the rest of the so-called “attackers” for Johnston’s ineffective display.
Celtic had a massive chance to really lay a fatal blow on Rangers’ title-chances. Six points with a game in-hand would’ve been enough to see them start racing away. Instead, they’ve allowed a massive gust of optimism sweep Ibrox.
Johnston was one of the players who deserves a pat on the back for his efforts. He showed promise when on the ball, but not enough around him did likewise.
At this point, fans should be wrapping an arm around him and letting him know he did well. Not just for confidence, but because he actually did.