David Potter’s Reflections: “A good decision, Mr McLean!”


Posted By kevingraham

Posted in Articles, Match Reports

A remarkable night’s entertainment! And here was me thinking that it was just a dress rehearsal for the big show in a fortnight! Well, that is true and the Scottish Cup Final is the game that matters, and Aberdeen showed enough to give us reason for concern. At times they were well on top, but crucially, our defenders, without necessarily showing any great degree of finesse or sophistication, held out and it was noticeable that after about the 70th minute, the Dons ran out of steam, the pendulum definitely swung in our direction and we finished the game well in control.

The goals were well taken, but there is a danger signal up in the undeniable fact that the best goal of the game was the one scored by Johnny Hayes. That man must not be allowed the space that he was given! Nial McGinn also had a good game, and it was one of the few games this season that anyone consistently got the better of Michael Lustig. There are lessons to be learned here, but without a shadow of a doubt, Scott Brown was sadly missed.

It was an odd game. Celtic looked as if they were heading for double figures at one point (they once gave Aberdeen 9 at Parkhead – remember that?) but then, by the end of the first half and for the first quarter of an hour of the second half, Aberdeen were well on top! I don’t think the Scottish Cup final is going to be like that. It will be all different.

At the risk of going against the orthodox pundits (including the Celtic ones!) , I was not convinced that that was a penalty when Gordon collided with Shinnie. Mr McLean, who had not a bad game, was not convinced either and it was certainly not clear cut. It was certainly not going to be a goal, for Shinnie may have got the first touch, but the ball was going nowhere! So, maybe not. A good decision, Mr McLean!

Quite a few odd things as well. Why does Chris Sutton not like Dedryck Boyata? Why do players of all teams take illegal corner kicks outside the quadrant? Why did no-one notice Shay Logan throwing the ball at Leigh Griffiths? Why did the said Leigh Griffiths not walk away? I’m no expert at lip reading, but I also thought he told a linesman to go and enjoy sexual intercourse as well at one point. And then he gets yellow carded for walking too slowly! You couldn’t make that up, could you?

So where are we? Well, we are still unbeaten. It would be nice to beat Partick Thistle and Hearts, but how frustrating and galling it would be to lose the Scottish Cup final! On tonight’s showing, it is not impossible, but I still think that we have the better players, and we should win…

Long term, we should certainly make a bid for Patrick Roberts. (Incidentally, that was a nasty one that Considine got him with, was it not?). But he was superb throughout, and  he is also such a level headed young man that it would be remiss of Celtic not to go for him, even if he costs a lot of money. We would know what we are getting!

Yes, a good game and a good night. I’m even charitable enough to offer congratulations to Chelsea as well! It doesn’t go down well, though!

Firhill for thrills next Thursday night!


  1. elbhoy
    Posted May 14, 2017 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

    I agree that Chris Sutton talks authorititavely, but sometimes still talks mince.

    That “obsession” with Dedryck?

    In the first minute, Dedryck nursed a bouncing ball back to Craig Gordon, but the error, if any at all, was Gordon’s. He simply took his eye off the ball as he went to grasp it. He had it and he dropped it. It was Dedryck who recovered things with Stockley ( I think) closeby, by passing the ball calmly to a colleague.

    After scoring the first goal, Dedryck got he ball caught under his feet near the touchline deep in Celtic’s half. He adjusted his feet & passed his way out of trouble.

    It’s no wonder Aberdeen play a long ball game on their own pitch. It is a poor surface & it’s only some 3 weeks since McInnes himself was complaining about it. Aberdeen took advantage of their own ground’s dodgy surface, to play a frantic pressing game when Celtic had possession & a long ball counter attack game to decent effect.

    As for the “ball’s not in the quadrant”, was I the only one shouting at TV?
    How is it such a sharp man can talk nonsense on such a basic issue?

    As for the “penalty”, I think the ref did the best he could & so got it right.

    My initial impression & from other replays was that Gordon got his fists to the ball. Later replays from a different showed that Shinnie got the touch. I have great sympathy with any official trying to call that perfectly. We have often been aggrieved at penalty decisions given despite the lack of clear evidence. From his vantage point Mr. Mclean was not convinced it was a penalty and correctly didn’t award it. I thought it was disappointing to hear the Aberdeen manager criticize the ref’s ability on the basisi on that decision. I thought the ref performed well in a game where several players should really have a hard look at themselves.

    In my opinion, Shinnie seemed to hold his right leg out (after touching the ball). In other words he knew the ball was going out of play & he had no chance of retrieving
    it. Simply, if he had wanted to touch the ball away from Gordon he would have jabbed it & drawn his leg down quickly to get round the keeper. He didn’t & left his leg up so that the diving Gordon would connect with it. He then went down on cue claiming a penalty.

    I only say all the previous to illustrate how players intentionally try to dupe (a zetgeist word) referees into awarding fouls & particularly penalties where normally the refs probably wouldn’t. I feel uncomfortable when I see any Celtic player doing it although it does seem to a rare occurrence.

    As for Shay Logan, he should have received a 2nd yellow for his assault with the ball on Griffiths but with the ref’s back truned his assistant failed to spot it. Perhaps the video panel will review this sequence and dish out some justice to Logan.

    However, the Police Commander should also examine all footage of Logan during this game and ask his officers why no one intervened directly with the player when he was actively seeking to create a breach of the peace within the Celtic support. I saw enough on the tv video to recognize some of what he was doing – so the question for the Police Commander is this:

    “If ans are held accountable for their good behaviour the why are some players immune from the same – some might say higher – standard of behaviour accountability in these circumstances?”

    Logan should have been “advised” by a sergeant/inspector at that part of the ground but maybe their Safety Advisory Group will have the courage to do something retrospectively so that the Polcie know what to do in future.

    Congarts of the award David. Well deserved.

  2. Posted May 14, 2017 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

    Yes the referee was correct not to award a penalty, as the Aberdeen player was (1) high boot! (2) he was showing his studs! Foul to Celtic . End of story!

  3. John Kane
    Posted May 14, 2017 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    Watching the game from a distance away (Ontario, Canada) I’m never going to have the same appreciation for how th fellow of play went on the night and how well our defence played, or indeed the team as a whole. What is clear is the fact that in five attempts, Aberdeen have failed to gain even a draw against BR’s team. No doubt they have tried different approaches and on Friday evening, with our captain missing they would have felt they had possibly the best chance of beating us.
    I have no doubt that Brendan and his staff as they have done throughout the season, will carefully analyze the game and make the necessary adjustments for the Cup Final, despite McInnes claiming we have something to think about for Hampden as though we were going to take them lightly. With Brown back and the possibility even of Dembele playing a part, so long as our players show up, then we will win comfortably, due to our class and attitude. That’s the massive difference with Brendan’s Celtic compared with last season and even under Lennie when Hampden all too often proved elusive.
    Here’s to a Treble! HH!

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