Hartson blows with the wind: “I think Celtic need to do a miracle if they’re going to get the title back this season”

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The Celtic Star

When John Hartson appeared as a pundit on BBC Scotland earlier this season when they were showing one of the away European qualifiers he went all negative on Celtic, in total contrast to his usual ‘grass is always greener’ outlook when he’s a pundit on Celtic TV.

Chris Sutton likes to be controversial but at least he’s consistent and while he is clearly a Celtic man he isn’t scared to call out our club in his punditry nor is he afraid of the blue devil down river.

Yesterday Big Bad John was on Go Radio – in ‘mixed company’ as they say in Glasgow – so it was no surprise really that his Mr Positive persona was nowhere to be seen and we heard a return of that early season BBC gloom and doom from the Welshman as far as Celtic’s chances are concerned in the Scottish Premiership this season.

Hartson could have pointed out that both Glasgow clubs suffered at the weekend after punishing European ties last Thursday and while theRangers lost at home by two goals to Lyon, Celtic scored three in the heat of Seville but lost out by a single goal margin on a very tough away trip.

Betis Juanmi, left, celebrates after scoring his side s fourth goal during the Europa League Group G soccer match between Real Betis and Celtic at Benito Villamarin stadium in Seville, Spain, Thursday, Sept. 16, 2021. AP Photo/Miguel Morenatti

He could have noted that theRangers were fortunate to have a home match following the game at Ibrox against Lyon while Celtic were unlucky to not only be on the road but heading to an away ground were we usually struggle playing on that Poundland plastic pitch.

And he could have noted that both sides lost a goal a piece and that the only one they scored was by theRangers and that was perhaps the biggest Honest Mistake of the season so far as it was so blatantly offside. Have you seen it?

Instead Hartson went down a different track while in mixed company, claiming that Celtic now need a miracle to win the league. Maybe, or maybe the match officials actually doing their job would be sufficient to get that job done, John?

“I think (the)Rangers started the season as favourites for me anyway,” Hartson said. “Celtic are in a transition, they lost 10 players. Ange has had to come and completely build a new team. So there are going to be some hiccups from a Celtic point of view, particularly away from home.

“Nobody likes to see or hear it, certainly Celtic fans, but it was going to happen and I don’t think there’ll be any pressure or any panic on Ange.

“With his professionalism and his managerial record he’ll obviously think ‘I need to start winning games away from home’.

Livingston v Celtic Copyright: Andrew Milligan

“Maybe set up differently, I think they’ve got to be a little bit more pragmatic when they’re going forward in terms of being hit on the counter-attack, they’ve got to defend properly in that sense and put players back in position.

“But, as I said, I think Celtic are in a bit of a transition and I expect (the)Rangers to go on and win the league.

“I think Celtic need to do a miracle if they’re going to get the title back this season.”

And on that theRangers goal against Motherwell, didn’t someone try to warn Ange a few months ago about these Honest Mistakes in Scottish football? No? Must have imagined it…

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