The shifting needle and today’s events that shuts down Laudrup’s reasoning | OneFootball

The shifting needle and today’s events that shuts down Laudrup’s reasoning

Logo: The Celtic Star

The Celtic Star

The lesser half of the most famous brothers in Danish footballing history, and former Rangers player Brian Laudrup – not even the best player in his family the Celtic fans used to note – has today been discussing the upcoming Glasgow Derby, which is now just over a week away. Laudrup of course was part of the team who managed to win 9 consecutive titles in the 90’s, yet fell at the final hurdle as the recently deceased and much loved Wim Jansen (RIP) lead his Celtic team to the league title in 1998, therefore halting the Danish stars hopes of getting a record breaking tenth title before departing Glasgow.

Laudrup feels that the events of the past few days has potentially swung the needle in favour towards the reincarnation of the successor club pretending to be the used to represent back in the 1990’s. With Callum McGregor and Yosuke Ideguchi both on the receiving end of Barry Ferguson’s boot boys on Saturday evening, and now looking almost certain to miss out next week, Laudrup believes this along with Joe Aribo arriving back from the African Cup Of Nations earlier than predicted puts the Ibrox club in the driving seat. No-one appears to have updated him about theRangers suffering their own bad news regarding injuries today, with Ianis Hagi undergoing surgery and being ruled out for the rest of the season!

Speaking in his weekly column in the Daily Mail, the 82 times capped former Denmark international had this to say.

“Nigeria’s surprise loss came barely 24 hours after Celtic captain Callum McGregor suffered a fractured cheekbone in their Scottish Cup tie at Alloa, with Yosuke Ideguchi another casualty. The midfield battleground has been altered. “Does that mean the needle is shifting in favour of theRangers? If you asked the two managers, I’m sure both would disagree. But looking from the outside, I would certainly prefer to be in Van Bronckhorst’s shoes.”

There is no doubt that the loss of McGregor and Ideguchi will be felt by Celtic, especially our club captain who has been a vital cog in the Ange Postecoglou system so far this season. If truth be told I expect only one of the two would have started the Glasgow Derby anyway as Ange will have most likely played Callum in the deeper role with Reo Hatate playing as the ‘number 8’.

Nir Bitton. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Barring anymore injuries I imagine Nir Bitton will now move into that position, someone who has been on top form this season, often receiving plaudits for his performances back in his preferred role. So yes, the loss of McGregor will of course have an impact but maybe not as great as it would be if we didn’t have a strong back up candidate for his position sitting in reserve.

Another thing that has piqued my interest in the last few days is the overreaction to Aribo being available. I’m sure it benefits his team having him back but it’s not like he’s put his stamp on this game in the past. I fail to recall any match where you could genuinely say he was the difference maker so I don’t feel like having to face the Nigerian international will effect the outcome of the game as much as many in the media are alluding to.

Laudrup goes on to state that ALL the pressure is on Celtic which I disagree with. He also mentions that Ange Postecoglou would come in for criticism if he was on the losing end of defeat next week. He said:

“As it stands with two vital rounds of games to come before the derby all the pressure is on Celtic. They’re playing at home on 2 February. They’re four points behind. Winning would mean everything to their hopes of finishing top in May, but a loss would be immensely damaging. “Also, for Ange Postecoglou personally, suffering defeat in two successive Old Firm (sic) games wouldn’t be nice. Criticism would follow. That’s simply management in Glasgow.”

I believe there is as much pressure on theRangers next week as there is on Celtic. Don’t forget their team have proven time and time again that they are bottlers when things get tight. Yes they won the league last season but there was absolutely zero pressure applied by Celtic who were self imploding at the time. When the pressure was on in the cups though they wilted. This again was the case a few months ago when they got dumped out of the league cup at the semi final stage.

This current Celtic team has clicked a lot quicker under Ange Postecoglou than anyone at Ibrox ever imagined. We are the team playing an exciting, fast paced brand of football that most teams can’t get anywhere near the level of. In all honesty we should be burying teams on a weekly basis, only a lack of composure in front of goals has prevented this but that will come.

I watched the second half of their game against Aberdeen last week and they were pedestrian. Compared to the football we play it is night and day and their players will know this and worry that if we take all 3 points next week the gap will be pretty much non existent (depending on the results in both clubs next two fixtures of course). So the pressure on them to try and snatch a result at Celtic Park will be huge.

Regarding the criticism Ange would receive if we lost next week, I believe Celtic fans would be able to look past one result and see that on a whole the job the manager has done so far in such a short period should be applauded. Even if the result didn’t go our way I think the title race would be far from over and when our injury problems clear up we will be a force to be reckoned with during the remaining part of the season.

Win your next two matches Celtic and let’s see who feels the pressure come next Wednesday.

Conall McGinty

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