David Potter’s Reflections: “It was a clear push, and credit to Mr Collum,”


Posted By kevingraham

Posted in Articles, Match Reports

Not in all honesty, our best performance of the season, but it does preserve our unbeaten record in what was a hard fought game that was always likely to have a touch of “dig” about it. And we can expect more bitterness and self-pity from Motherwell on Saturday, I fear.

Let us first of all knock completely on the head any nonsense about that penalty being “controversial”. It was a clear push, and credit to Mr Collum, he did not hesitate. What made it “controversial” was the disgraceful reaction of the Motherwell players both at the award of the penalty and, even worse, at the full time whistle. Oh, dear, bitterness and hatred of Celtic does indeed run deep in these parts! A shame too because Motherwell have some good players and are a more than respectable side. You have a lot of be proud of Mr Robinson, but the behaviour and reaction of your players (and the pie and coin throwing fans) is not one of them!

That said, we had one or two disappointing performances last night. Just what has gone wrong with Stuart Armstrong? Brilliant last season, ordinary this season. And Tom Rogic? I have often felt that he is a lot better as a substitute for the last 30 minutes than a 90 minute man. Unfortunately, circumstances dictated that he was brought on a lot earlier last night, and he didn’t have a good game. Yet the fans only really turned on him after he shirked a tackle late in the game – something that says everything about the fans’ expectations of the normally whole-hearted Aussie. Mikael Lustig, admirable player though he has been, looked a little stale last night and possibly could do with a rest. He cannot really be blamed for the goal, though, because that was simply hard luck. Leigh Griffiths worked hard as always, but wasn’t really direct enough last night, and several times, I felt he might have done better to shoot on sight – something that would have had the advantage of surprise.

Craig Gordon, as I seem to say every week, has one major weakness and that is his kicking. As a shot stopper, he has few equals. He is in this respect as good a goalkeeper as we have had. His positional sense is occasionally wrong (although he his right oftener than he is wrong) but his kicking out has long been a weakness. I hate to sound like Chris Sutton with his favourite word “sloppy”  – but I can’t think of a better word!

But we cannot fault the team for their endeavour. The most heartening sight of the night was Scott Sinclair running to get the ball out of the back of the net after he had scored the penalty. He was not content with a draw. He wanted a win. So did we, but 1-1 it was – a result that in fact strengthens our position at the top of the League, given the result at Ibrox.

And now the bad news. Fir Park, Motherwell must be one of the worst grounds in Scotland. Coach parking is non-existent. A long, unpleasant and dark walk to and from the bus is necessary. Four ill co-ordinated and disjointed looking stands give an ugly look to the ground with all sorts of funny girders in funny places. The slope seems to be getting worse every time I go there, and it is a wonder that the media don’t make a lot more of it – but maybe that is because it is not so obvious from the Main Stand. The natives were distinctly unfriendly, although they did seem at one point to be willing to offer Leigh Griffiths a pie or two. The access and exits to the South Stand are painfully slow, and I shudder to think what would happen if there were a fire in one of these stairwells. You cannot get a clear view of the near goal from the badly contructed South Stand. For reasons like that, I hope that the next time we play at Fir Park, the game is on the TV. Far better to hear Chris Sutton saying “sloppy” than another trip to that less than totally pleasant stadium.

So, that one out of our system, time to really shut them up at Parkhead on Saturday!


  1. Posted December 1, 2017 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Robinson did not appeal the penalty award because he knows full well (no pun meant) that it was a penalty! The same on Wednesday, MC Gregor was pushed not just with one hand ,but two hands in his back! And as for last Sunday?, well if someone “tugs” at your arm running like Sinclair was, then that also is a penalty.! So come on Muppets from ‘Well, see what is there, and take your nurishment! Why not complain about that thug of yours, that nearly put Dembele out of the game for good, or are you all afraid the compliance officer may just come in and ban him?? Oops a daisy, careful as you go!!!! Hail Hail, oh and expect a doing of at least 4. -. 0 tomorrow at Paradise!!!!

  2. JOHN
    Posted December 1, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    spot on as usual.don’t know why so many tv pundits are so angry at the two penalties against motherwell when obviously they have not looked at different angles of tv video before opening their big gobs.the poor refs can’t win as they have got to judge the incident within seconds,no replays.i believe that refs are honest even when things go against celtic and other teams. Brenden Rodgers said he expected more penalties for the amount of attacking play his team does and I agree with him.seems to me there is a witch hunt on Celtics success,why are people so angry. in my opinion Brenden Rodgers is setting high standards in Scottish football and should be applauded not vilified.their is a nastiness in the air and I say to all detractors of celtic is get a life.

  3. Bigeal
    Posted December 1, 2017 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

    2 pens all season not many when you consider how much attacking we do, I’m always criticising Sinclair for staying up when he makes those runs into the box, you would think he had shot someone with the reaction from pundits and press.

  4. tom campbell
    Posted December 1, 2017 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    The penalties? In each case the referee was in perfect position to judge, within ten yards of each incident. Both awards were correct, although both were “soft” in the sense that neither was an obvious assault on a player … but they were penalties. One cannot be “a little pregnant”; one is pregnant or not. A foul in the box, committed by a defender, is a penalty.

    Motherwell? Those that live by the sword die by the sword.

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