The one silver lining Celtic can take from Rangers defeat

By David Walton

December 30, 2019

There aren’t many that will be thinking of the positives to come out of yesterday’s 2-1 defeat to Rangers at Parkhead.

No wonder, there was hardly anything to look back on with any fondness. It was a shocking performance from Neil Lennon’s side, whose bottle for the game must have serious question marks put over it.

For much of the contest, Celtic were second-best all over the pitch. We were getting over-run once again in the midfield whilst we couldn’t get anything going in the final third.

Celtic were abysmal yesterday (Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Yet despite all of this, there is a silver lining to take from the defeat. Had we managed to win, you could question whether the board would’ve seen enough to concern them into strengthening substantially. With an eight-point gap heading into the winter break, it wouldn’t have surprised you if we hadn’t recruited anyone when we returned in January.

What yesterday’s result and performance does do is open the board’s eyes. It alerts them to the fact that we’re anything but unbeatable domestically. If Peter Lawwell or Dermot Desmond thought we were strolling to nine-in-a-row, they can think again.

Lenny wants signings – time to back him

Neil Lennon has already confirmed that he wants to bring some players in next month (Daily Record). The board must be craving that too after watching the game yesterday.

Neil Lennon must be backed next month (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The result shows that there can now be no illusions by Celtic’s money-men that this squad is good enough. It badly needs more quality depth in several positions. Celtic will surely now be busier in January than they would’ve been with a win.

That should benefit us for the second half of the season. Lennon has consistently turned to his bench this season and received little reward for it. The likes of Tom Rogic and Leigh Griffiths aren’t offering enough for one reason or another. That’s despite the fact they’re big-name players in the current squad.

You only need to look back to last season to see how much of a positive January was in enabling to kick us on. Bringing in the likes of Timothy Weah and Oli Burke initially provided a boost and energy to our forward play. Whilst the latter eventually dipped off, Celtic undoubtedly came back after the winter break with a spark.

Nothing seemed to go right for us against Rangers (Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

In fact, last season we managed to win our first eight league games. Our first six were done with clean sheets. The new signings were crucial to that run, and something similar will therefore need to happen this year.

If Celtic can inject that bit of quality back into the squad, there’s every chance it will be us laughing at the end of the campaign. At the very least, yesterday’s events should make the board see that’s a necessity.