Tonight falls on the Celtic board and absolutely nobody else

By David Walton

July 28, 2021

It’s going to be so easy to point the finger of blame at Ange Postecoglou tonight, but the Celtic board are the sole culprits.

The Hoops lost 2-1 in Midtjylland this evening to see themselves bundled out of the UEFA Champions League qualifiers in a humiliating manner. Indeed, despite being the seeded side, Celtic still managed to produce a woeful display as they failed to see off the Danes.

You can definitely pick holes in one or two of the manager’s decisions. Why he made changes so late will likely be a hot topic. But you can do that with any manager after any defeat.

The fact is Postecoglou was thrown into UEFA qualifiers without signings in key areas. It’s not his fault he went into tonight’s game with Anthony Ralston, Stephen Welsh, and Dane Murray at the back.

It isn’t Postecoglou’s fault that so many of the players he’s working with were brought in by Neil Lennon. It’s also not his fault that his best players are either leaving or running out of contract.

Celtic "open talks" to sign Joe Hart | REACTION

Tonight falls on the Celtic board. They’ve been able to see since January that we wouldn’t have a right-back for this very night. They knew that Kris Ajer would likely depart and we would be short at the back.

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The Celtic board simply didn’t plan, and now we’re seeing the results

This all stretches back to a failure to forward plan back in January. A failure to be efficient in our transfer work and bring in Ben Davies. Instead, we were far too focused on the short-term. Too focused on keeping Lennon in the job with short-term moves that were never going to benefit us for these qualifiers.

You can say they’ve backed the manager with some of the signings made so far. That’s fine. Time will tell whether Postecoglou will be a success with his new players or not. But they certainly didn’t help tonight.

Carl Starfelt wasn’t available. Kyogo Furuhashi wasn’t available. The manager had one new signing on the pitch tonight. The rest of the contingent? All someone else’s signings.

Photo by BO AMSTRUP/Ritzau Scanpix/AFP via Getty Images

But tonight ultimately comes down to a failure to forward plan. We’ve left ourselves short in too many key areas and we’ve paid the price.

Look at the goals we conceded tonight. Both come from major defensive mistakes. Errors that more experienced pros would’ve snuffed out.

It’s easy to go in on the manager given his unknown reputation in Scotland. He’s an easy target. And yes we have enough to be putting Midtjylland away. But this falls on nobody other than the Celtic board.