As I sit here as an unemployed university graduate, possessing a bank balance which has not reached the mythical figures of £0 for almost a year (does anyone know how long your student overdraft remains interest free?), I really should have plenty to worry about in life. When will I get a job? Where will I get a job? Will I EVER get a job?
In reality though there isn’t “plenty” I am worrying about. Obviously my parents won’t want to hear this, but I’m pretty satisfied waking up at midday, taking the dog for a walk before spending the afternoon sunning (burning) my pale body in the garden.
I do have one worry however. One big worry, and it’s the same big worry every Celtic fan has at the moment. That is the increasingly likely prospect of crashing out of the Champions League tomorrow night before the competition has even really begun.
Last weeks defeat to Legia Warsaw was a disaster. I don’t need go through the match in any detail as I am sure that that particular nightmare will be etched into the memory of every fan who had the misfortune of witnessing it.
Tomorrow night, on the other hand, can be discussed. The outcome of the “home” leg is monumental to Celtic’s season, and future. I will be the first to admit that, like Frank McAvennie, I had never heard of our new manager until one morning in June, when, as is my daily routine, I flicked through every Celtic related twitter account I could find to see the name Ronny Deila popping up in almost every tweet. After doing a couple of hours research of my own I had convinced myself he was the perfect fit for us. A student of the game. Not only had he worked wonders at Stromsgodset, but he had spent time at Manchester City, Ajax, Barcelona and Borussia Dortmund, watching their training methods in order to improve his own footballing knowledge and progress as a coach. The articles on Ronny were vast as were the comparisons to the ever popular Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp. What was not to like? The video of Ronny stripping to his pants in celebration of keeping Stromsgodset in the Norwegian top flight had me sold. Not only did I agree with his footballing philosophies, but he appeared to have a lively, charismatic personality. Something I think you need to have if you are going succeed at a club like Celtic, otherwise the pressures from the fans and the media will get on top of you. It is something Neil Lennon had. Something Tony Mowbray, unfortunately, did not. I never want to hear the phrase “We’ll take it on the chin” muttered by a Celtic manager again.
If, as I expect, we go out of the Champions League tomorrow night, Ronny Deila must ensure the players have at least left everything they have on the pitch and have given a positive, winning, display. For his own future, he needs a win tomorrow night. Not necessarily the three goal margin which will see us through (as brilliant as that would be) but a win that will lift the team and the fans, and demonstrate that his ideas for the season will improve us as a team.